It’s unfortunate, but true — we’ve reached a point in the summer where we’re playing near-meaningless, low-tempo contests against division rivals with similarly losing records. But even with the Royals having returned to ineptitude, the Twins can’t seem to beat them, as Kansas City took their second straight victory of the weekend.
Minnesota seemed to pack all of their energy into the first two minutes of the game. Joe Mauer doubled on a 1-0 count, and Eddie Rosario singled him in two pitches later to give the Twins their first and only lead.
The double was the 415th in Mauer’s career, making Joltin’ Joe the franchise leader in two-baggers, passing Kirby Puckett. Congratulations, Joe!
But the Royals struck back immediately, with recent All-Star and temporary Jose Berrios battery-mate Salvador Perez corking a two-run homer to right field, putting Kansas City on top by a run. Two innings later, Lucas Duda singled with the bases loaded to give the Royals a 3-1 lead.
Then the middle innings hit, and pretty much everybody checked out. Fans, players, broadcasters, umpires alike...did the middle innings even happen? Can you remember literally one thing from the fourth through the seventh tonight? No, you can’t, you liar.
I think I was checking out library books online but according to the box score, Lance Lynn was pulled after completing five innings of work and walking six Royal hitters. Altogether, Kansas City walked nine times on the night, while only issuing three free passes themselves, and striking out eleven Twins.
Both teams scored in the eighth: Eduardo Escobar and Whit Merrifield each had RBI ground-ball singles for their side. There would be no late-stage comeback in the ninth tonight; Wily Peralta set down the side in order, and the Royals took the series.
Tomorrow the Twins will be 9.5 games back of Cleveland and fighting off a sweep at the hands of the 68-loss Royals. This has been a year to remember.
1B Joe Mauer (3-for-4, R)
LF Eddie Rosario (2-for-4, R, RBI)
2B Brian Dozier (0-for-4, 2 K)
CF Jake Cave (0-for-4, 4 K)
C Bobby Wilson (0-for-3, K)
ROBOT ROLL CALL: