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All-Time Twins Tournament, Puckett Round, Day 2: You have to score to win

Two shutouts move the series along.

Dave Boswell
The Wizard of Bos.
Photo by Louis Requena/MLB via Getty Images

Two bullpens got a very nice breather.

Minneapolis Sectional

(16) 2017 Twins 6
(13) 2003 Twins 0
Series tied 1-1

Jose Berrios pitched eight scorless innings. He only needed one.

The ‘17 offense battered Brad Radke, scoring two runs in the first inning and striking several key doubles to tie the series with a 6-0 shutout.

‘17 claimed a multi-run lead before Radke recorded an out, as Brian Dozier and Joe Mauer led off with singles before Miguel Sano doubled them both home.

That was all Berríos would need, as the right-hander allowed just two hits — none after Jacque Jones’ second-inning double — over eight frames.

While Berríos worked, so did the offense, adding to their lead one inning later on Dozier’s RBI double. Radke settled in, but did not make it through the sixth inning; with two on and two out, Jason Castro hit a two-run double of his own, stretching the lead to 5-0 and chasing Radke from the game.

Reliever J.C. Romero proved not immune to ‘17’s bats, as Sanó hit a solo home run in the seventh to complete the scoring.

With Berríos four pitches shy of 100, Adalberto Mejia pitched a perfect ninth to bring the game to its conclusion.

Stars of the Game
‘17 — SP José Berríos: 8.0 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 2 BB, 6 K
‘17 — DH Miguel Sanó: 2-5, HR, 2B, R, 3 RBI
‘17 — 2B Brian Dozier: 3-5, 2B, R, RBI
‘03 — RP Rick Reed: 1.1 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K

St. Paul Sectional (played)

(7) 2019 Twins 0
(3) 1969 Twins 5
‘69 leads 2-0

While ‘69 outhomered their total in Game 1 of the Kirby Puckettt round, they did not score 14 runs as in the previous game. It made little difference.

Graig Nettles went 3-4 with one of three ‘69 solo home runs on the day and Dave Boswell combined with two relievers to shut out ‘19 5-0.

‘19 muscled seven hits off Boswell in six innings, but were unable to push any runs across the board, dropping their second straight game to open the series.

In contrast, ‘69 threatened ‘19 starter Michael Pineda from the first inning, as a single, walk, and hit batsman loaded the bases with one out before César Tovar grounded into a double play to end the inning without adjusting the scoreboard.

Perhaps that was why Nettles decided not to rely on silly things like baserunners to open the scoring the next inning, cracking a two-out home run to put ‘69 up by one. An inning and three batters later, Tony Oliva echoed Nettles’ blast with one of his own.

‘69 kept hitting Pineda in the fourth, deciding that baserunners can be productive after all. Tovar singled, stole second, took third on a throwing error, and scored on Leo Cárdenas’ sacrifice fly. ‘69 put two more men on base on Nettles’ double and Ted Uhlander’s single, but Pineda struck out Rod Carew to keep the score at 3-0.

But one-run innings add up when a team tallies enough of them, and ‘69’s next, the sixth inning, saw Pineda’s departure. John Roseboro singled with one out and moved to second on Cárdenas’ ground ball. With Nettles due up, ‘19 went to Martin Perez to set up a lefty-on-lefty matchup. Nettles apparently did not care with which hand the pitcher threw, as he singled in Roseboro on Pérez’s second pitch.

Harmon Killebrew capped the scoring in the seventh, blasting a two-out, full-count pitch from Pérez 430 feet.

By this point, ‘69’s bullpen had taken over and picked up where Boswell left off, relievers Jerry Crider and Bob Miller limiting ‘19 to one hit over the final three frames.

Stars of the Game
‘19 — 1B Miguel Sanó: 3-4, 2B
‘19 — RP Zack Littell: 1.0 IP, 0 H, 0 R, BB, 0 K
‘69 — 3B Graig Nettles: 3-4, HR, 2B, R, 2 RBI
‘69 — SP Dave Boswell: 6.0 IP, 7 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 6 K
‘69 — RP Bob Miller: 2.0 IP, H, 0 R, 0 BB, 0 K
‘69 — RF Tony Oliva: 2-4, HR, R, RBI

Walter Johnson Round: Day 1 / Day 2 / Day 3 / Day 4 / Day 5
Harmon Killebrew Round: Day 1 / Day 2 / Day 3 / Day 4 / Day 5
Kirby Puckett Round: Day 1 / Day 2 / Day 3 / Day 4 / Day 5 / Day 6 / Day 7
Joe Mauer Round: Preview / Game 1 / Game 2 / Game 3 / Game 4 / Game 5 / Game 6 / Game 7