Remember last week, when Lance Lynn walked far fewer people than before, and we wondered if he was all fixed, now? The answer, then, was “who knows,” and it still is. This guy’s been pitching major-league baseball for a long time, and he’s quite aware this season isn’t his best. Is he a staff savior? No. Is he going to be better than he was in April? Almost assuredly, yes. How much better? Ask Criswell.
Given that Lynn’s problems thus far have revolved around walking batters, you’d be completely justified in ignoring this game once Lynn walked in a bases-loaded Angels run during the fifth inning. Assuming you were up that late, at all; I wasn’t. I’m fighting off a mild-yet-persistent stomach bug. (And, now, by clicking on this link, you’ve got it, too. Ain’t internet grand?)
But, if you didn’t set your alarm clock to catch the end, you missed a fun finish...
Down 4-2, Eddie Rosario led off the ninth with a solo dong, because that’s what Eds do. Robbie Grossman tried hard and struck out. Logan Morrison hit a double. Then the Chess Match Of Ancient Baseball Wizards began!
Mike Scioscia, the Gandalf, who’s been at his job since 2000, intentionally walked Max Kepler to put the go-ahead run on first and face Ehire Adrianza + Bobby Wilson. Paul Molitor, the Dumbledore, who began his HOF career before God invented Twitter, subbed in Mitch Garver for Adrianza. Garver singled; Morrison scored. TIE GAME. Then Molitor chose to replace Garver with pinch-runner Gregorio Petit.
A curious decision, as the hitter due up was Wilson, not exactly a famed gap-power threat (career OPS: .586). It’s unlikely Petit would be able to score, and his career OPS is .652. Wouldn’t you think Petit might be a better pinch-hitter, not pinch-runner? The go-ahead run’s on third, with one out, in the ninth. That’s more important than the runner on first.
Whatever. Wilson hit the ball far enough for Justin Upton to catch it and Kepler to scamper home. The Twins went ahead. Fernando Rodney came in, gave up atom balls hit directly at fielders (that’s the meaning of “atom balls,” get it? “At ‘em”), and Molitor was able to defeat Scioscia. This time. The duel’s not over, my old adversary. Tomorrow, we shall meet again, and who knows? Perhaps I shall have the better king & pawn endgame, yes? Mock me at your own ultimate folly!
Trevor Hildenberger faced four batters, struck out three of them, and this makes me very happy, I’m rooting for him. Matt Magill got the “win,” because baseball is wonderful. Robot Roll Call:
Comments Of The Game Thread: “My hat is so sideways” — Asthix / “So is our closer’s” — CG19. C’mon, CG19, it’s not THAT sideways. But it is, kinda.