In a night where Dodgers rookie Cody Bellinger hit for the cycle, and the Yankees and Red Sox duked it out for 16 innings, the Minnesota Twins pulled off perhaps the most impressive feat of them all: beating the Houston Astros.
For the second straight night, Brian Dozier led off the ballgame with a big fly. And, for the second straight night, the Astros quickly reclaimed the lead, with Yuli Gurriel doubling in Carlos Correa in the 2nd, and Jose Altuve stroking a solo Johnson in the 3rd.
But the Twins weren’t done! They loaded the bases with none out in the 5th and tied it on a Zack Granite double-play grounder. Then they loaded the bases with nobody out AGAIN in the 6th and were a bit more productive, as Eddie Rosario doubled in a pair to make it 4-2 Twins.
Ervin Santana led the pitching effort, as All-Star starters are wont to do, with a 6-inning start in which he allowed just two runs on five hits. He did issue five unintentional walks, which wasn’t ideal, and boosted his pitch count to 110 — hence the relatively short outing in an otherwise decent performance.
Tyler Duffey took over for the 7th and got a quick pair of outs, but -- blink — single, walk, single, bases loaded for Gurriel. Taylor Rogers (who had stranded 15 of 17 inherited runners) came in and showed Gurriel exactly whose neighborhood it was, getting him to ground weakly to second. Make it 18 of 20 inherited runners stranded, and make it the third time tonight that the Astros left ‘em loaded.
Rogers shut ‘em down again in the 8th, and All-Star closer Brandon Kintzler came in for the 9th. He had a monumental task: George Springer, Altuve, and Josh Reddick. He retired Springer, but hit Altuve with the pitch. Reddick grounded into a fielder’s choice, which meant Carlos Correa got to hit as the tying run.
Kintzler went to 3-0 on Correa, but got him to pop weakly to center field, and the win was sealed.
Tomorrow it’s Kyle Gibson vs. Mike Fiers, as the Twins attempt to win their first series post-Break, and the countdown to Bartolo Day grows ever smaller.
2B Brian Dozier (2-for-4, HR)
LF Eddie Rosario (2-for-4, 2 RBI)
SS Jorge Polanco (1-for-4 with a SLICK defensive play)
CF Zack Granite (0-for-5, 7 LOB)
Robot Roll Call:
|8||Can't Read Good||22|
|12||less cowbell, more 'neau||9|
|16||Pau from the sky-tinted water||3|
One more thing: the final tally for the poll was 17 votes for yes, the Twins should win tonight, and 11 votes for no. Those 11 will be tracked down and banned accordingly.