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Twins 5, Tigers 4 (10 inn.): Kepler earns his robe, team sets sights on A.L. Central title

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The universe is working in the team’s favor.

Detroit Tigers v Minnesota Twins
Maximum Kepler and GarvSauce. What a duo.
Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

A lot of scoreboard watching was in store for us Minnesota Twins fans during tonight’s game. A Twins win is always good, but pair it with a Chicago White Sox loss and a New York Yankees loss and it would be a good Tuesday evening in Twins Territory.

The Detroit Tigers came in to Minneapolis and Homer Bailey was given the task of starting against the AL Central foes. This was Bailey’s first start since the first week of the regular season due to right bicep issues, but it didn’t seem like he missed a beat for the first three innings. Bailey sent down the Tigers in order for the first third of the game, notching three strikeouts.

However, the righty hit a wall in the fourth (figuratively speaking, he’s not Byron Buxton). After hitting Victor Reyes by a pitch and yielding a single to Willi Castro, a Miguel Cabrera RBI single got Detroit on the board. A walk to Jeimer Candelario to load the bases was the tipping point and skipper Rocco Baldelli got the hook out in favor of Cody Stashak, who promptly induced a double play and a flyout to prevent any further Tiger runs.

A couple members of the Bomba Squad showed up at Target Field this evening. Buxton launched a leadoff homer in the bottom of the first inning to give Minnesota an immediate lead while Mitch Garver - yes, Mitch Garver! - hit a 417-foot homer to left field to give the Twins the lead again. Detroit starter Tarik Skubal issued a single, walk, and HBP after that and was pulled for Jose Cisnero, who struck out Buxton on three pitches to end the threat.

Cody Stashak came out again for the fifth and got a strikeout and worked around a two-out double to close the inning out. Trevor May was issued the sixth inning and struggled, issuing three walks while facing five batters, leading to Tyler Duffey coming in with two outs. An odd play lead to an odd throw to Miguel Sano from Duff Man, and Sano was charged with an error on the play that lead to a Tigers run and a tie game. The Tigers kept chipping away by getting a run across in the seventh thanks to a leadoff double by Daz Cameron and an RBI single from Castro.

Daniel Norris and Joe Jimenez worked the sixth and seventh in full, allowing only one hit total to a Twins batter. Buck Farmer took over in the eighth and struck out Garver to begin the inning, but Max Kepler earned his robe with a solo shot to right field and tie the game.

On the flip side, Tyler Clippard pitched a quiet top of the eighth and Sergio Romo allowed a single (with a fantastic bare-handed leaping grab in foul territory by Josh Donaldson, Bringer of Robes) in the top of the ninth. However, the duo was able to keep any foes from crossing home plate. Gregory Soto worked around an Ehrie Adrianza walk in the bottom of the ninth to force extra innings, Robert Manfred style.

Taylor Rogers pitched the tenth, allowing back-to-back singles that lead to Victor Reyes scoring and giving Detroit the lead once again. A strikeout and lineout for the second and third outs closed out the inning and got the Twins to the bat racks for the tenth.

But no worries as the offense has started to click lately. With Jake Cave at second base and pinch running for Josh Donaldson, he scored on an Eddie Rosario single to tie the game at 4-4 off of Bryan Garcia. Garcia proceeded to get back-to-back strikeouts of Miguel Sano and Garver with Rosie stealing second on the second K. Kepler pulled through by hitting a single and getting Rosario home for the second walkoff of the Tigers on the season.

Twins 5, Tigers 4 (10 inn.)
W: Rogers (2-4) ??? lol
L: Garcia (2-1)

These two teams meet tomorrow for one final time this season. Baseball will still be the name of the game, 640p Central will still be the time, and Target Field will still be the place. Casey Mize (0-2, 6.08 ERA/5.97 FIP) will take the bump for the Tigers. Minnesota will counter with Kenta Maeda (5-1, 2.52 ERA/3.05 FIP).

MYSTERY BAG OF NOTES AND FACTS

  • WHITE SOX LOST TONIGHT!!! The Twins are only 0.5 games behind Chicago.
  • That’s about it.

STUDS

  • Cody Stashak: 2.0 IP, 2 H, 1 K
  • Eddie Rosario: 2-5, RBI, K
  • Mitch Garver: 1-5, R, RBI, 3 K, HR
  • Max Kepler: 3-5, R, 2 RBI, K

duds

  • Trevor May: 0.2 IP, 1 R (0 ER), 3 BB
  • Taylor Rogers: 1.0 IP, 2 H, 1 R (0 ER), K

COMMENT OF THE GAME THREAD

Never in my life would I figure that a “Spiders win” comment would get COTG, but it meant the Sox lost, plus doomsdayshark called it.

To balance the universe, I’ll award a full COTG point to Joefishy and his “do not disturb” comment a la Nelson Cruz.

ROLL CALL

Thank you all for a great final Tuesday game thread of the regular season! See you on the postseason side!