Minnesota’s post-All Star break scheduled loomed like thunderclouds in the distance: Houston (the best team in baseball) and New York (record versus Twins in last 25 years: 197-4). On the plus side, the Twins would open with Jose Berrios on the mound, giving them a shot against the Astros.
That isn’t what happened.
Berrios got hammered by the powerful Astros lineup, not escaping the 2nd inning in a 10-5 Houston victory.
The game started very well for the Twins, with the long-dormant Brian Dozier leading the game off with a solo dong. Any hopes of Minnesota competing for a playoff spot would be aided immeasurably by Dozier repeating his second half of 2016.
That bright spot was dashed with a quickness by Houston’s offense in the second. After striking out Brian McCann, Berrios issued a walk, then saw Jorge Polanco commit an error behind him, and then it just went all to shit:
- Marwin Gonzalez singled in a run.
- Alex Bregman doubled in a run.
- George Springer singled in a run.
- Jose Altuve walked.
- Josh Reddick knocked in a run with a sacrifice fly.
- Carlos Correa singled in a run.
- Berrios was lifted for Phil Hughes.
- McCann hit a 3-run dong off Hughes.
And that was your ball game.
To the Twins’ credit, they didn’t entirely give up the ghost. After Houston tacked on two more runs in the third off Hughes, Dozier laced a bases-clearing double in the top of the 4th to make the score 10-4.
After adding another run in the 5th, the Twins got very close to making it a ballgame in 6th, loading the bases with two outs for Robbie Grossman. Houston All-Star Chris Devenski came in, ran up a full count, then got him to line out. And that was pretty much it for excitement.
Byron Buxton was pulled from the game after appearing to tweak something rounding first on a double in that inning, because good things shouldn’t happen to the Minnesota Twins. It’s a groin thing, and it’s day to day. God bless America.
STUDS: Houston’s entire lineup, Dozier.
DUDS: Berrios, Hughes.
ROBOT ROLL CALL:
|5||less cowbell, more 'neau||25|
|14||Can't Read Good||8|
|24||Pau from the sky-tinted water||1|
Enjoy your weekend, everybody.