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Oakland 6, Twins 2: Khris Khrushs Twins (simulated)

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Play Ball!

Wild Card Round - Tampa Bay Rays v Oakland Athletics Photo by Thearon W. Henderson/Getty Images

Since there is no baseball, and there is supposed to be baseball, lets simulate baseball. Every day, I’ll run a simulation of the game that should have happened via Out Of The Park 21, and write up a recap.

First things first, the kind folks at OOTP gave me a copy of the game to use for writing purposes with baseball shut down, and I want to thank them very much for doing so.

For the purpose of this simulation, I am going to start with the default “Live Start” roster in OOTP. That means that Randy Dobnak, Jake Cave, and Cody Stashak made the team. Everything else, I’m going to deal with as realistically as possible as it comes up. I’ll also try to have these up around the time the real game would have ended.

On to baseball though!

The Twins just couldn’t get their bats going today, as they dropped the first game of the young season to Oakland. Jose Berrios didn’t have a great day out there, but was really just hurt by one big inning. In the second inning, specifically, Matt Chapman and Mark Canha hit singles to start the inning with two on and no outs. Khris Davis then smacked a 389 foot dinger to left, putting the Twins in a 3-0 hole. Berrios dropped the next three batters in order to escape with no further damage. The third inning also started out rocky for the young right-hander, as Marcus Semien would lead off by putting a 1-1 pitch into the left field stands. The next three batters again went down in order.

Meanwhile, the Twins hadn’t managed to put a baserunner on through three, as their first trip through the order resulted in nine straight retirements for Oakland lefty Jesus Luzardo. The Twins finally got a hit in the bottom of the fourth, as lead-off man (Oops, I need to adjust the line up) Josh Donaldson singled on a liner past the shortstop. Donaldson then advanced on a fielder’s choice by Luis Arraez, and scored from second on the following at bat, when Nelson Cruz hit a hot grounder that snuck by the shortstop and into left field. Cruz moved to second on a single by Miguel Sano, but the inning would end with the score 4-1 Oakland, with a Jorge Polanco 6-4-3 double play ball.

Oakland took back the run in the bottom of the fourth, with Mark Canha singling to left field, and taking third on a double by the pesky Khris Davis. Canha didn’t try to test Eddie Rosario’s arm at least, but scored a couple batters later when Chad Pinder grounded out to Polanco. Pinder was the last batter Berrios would face, as he made an early trip to the showers, and Matt Wisler got the final out of the fourth.

An uneventful fifth for the Twins only added another single, this time by Byron Buxton, between a pair of K’s. Wisler kept the As off the scoreboard for the fifth as well. The sixth inning similarly saw just a single for the Twins, from Nelson Cruz. More notably, however, Cruz stole second. Yeah, I’m just as puzzled as you are. The Oakland half of the sixth inning saw Davis do even more damage, this time leading the inning off with a massive 420-foot solo shot to dead center. That was the only damage of the inning, as Wisler sat the next three batters down.

Jorge Polanco said Polanc-no to letting Oakland run up the score, and lead off the away half of the seventh with a 409 foot shot to left-center. He had no help though, and the next three batters went down in order. That ended the scoring for the day. Sergio Romo put away five consecutive Athletics to get through the seventh and two-thirds of the eighth inning, and Cody Stashak walked Khris Davis and allowed him to take second on a wild pitch before escaping unscathed.

The Twins tried to threaten in the ninth, when Nelson Cruz and Miguel Sano drew back-to-back walks, but the next three men made outs, and the game ended with Oakland on top.

WP: Jesus Luzardo LP: Jose Berrios SV: Liam Hendricks

Notes:

  • This game took forever, clocking in at three hours, fourteen minutes. So much for pace-of-play
  • It was a chilly, rainy day in Oakland, and less than 35,000 people showed up for opening day.
  • Jorge Polanco is on pace for 162 homers. Khris Davis is on pace for 324.

STUDS:

Nelson Cruz: 2-3, BB, RBI, SB
Jorge Polanco: 1-4, HR, RBI

DUDS:

Jose Berrios: 3.2 IP, 5ER
Mitch Garver: 0-4, 2K, 2LOB
Max Kepler: 0-4, K, 2LOB
Luis Arraez: 0-4, 1LOB
Eddie Rosario: 0-3, 1K, 1LOB

Tomorrow: At Oakland, 9:07 CST gametime (look for the recap around midnight, or first thing in the morning.)