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Reds 5, Twins 3: Who cares, we won the division

The Twins take the 3 seed and play Houston on Tuesday

Cincinnati Reds v Minnesota Twins Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

The Twins entered this game needing a win OR a White Sox loss to win the division.

The Chicago Cubs took all of the drama out of that for us by jumping all over Reynaldo Lopez early. He’s really just a gift that keeps giving to us.

After an uneventful first inning, Kris Bryant opened the second with his fourth home run of the year. A one-out single by back-up catcher Victor Caratini was followed by another bomba—this one courtesy the bat of David Bote. Lopez went ahead and walked the bases loaded, putting Jason Kipnis, Nico Horner, and Billy Hamilton on the bags. A two-run single by Cameron Maybin ended Lopez’ night, but not his line. Just to add some insult to injury, Hamilton stole home. It wasn’t a straight steal, as the Sox tried to catch Maybin, but still, its pretty funny. Hamilton added another run in the fourth with a longball of his own. Since the White Sox pitching staff are insistent on shooting themselves in the foot, the Cubs scored two more runs in the seventh on a throwing error by Jimmy Cordero. Just to raise our heartrates, the Cubs bullpen allowed five runs in eighth, and two more in the ninth—with a runner at third—before finally putting the game to bed. The Sox limped home with the 10-8 loss.

The game you probably cared more about had much, much less offense. No one broke through against Sonny Gray for the Reds or Rich Hill for the Twins until the fifth, when Gray made a rare mistake and balked in Jake Cave—without the benefit of a hit. Cave had walked, advanced to second on a fielder’s choice grounder, and taken third on a wild pitch.

Runs were traded in the sixth. A walk to Joey Votto (the Canadian that got away) ended Hill’s night, and a double by Eugenio Suarez brought Votto around. The Twins took the run back when a Max Kepler walk (boy, bet he wishes it had been Bauer today) and a Luis Arraez single put a runner in scoring position, and Eddie Rosario Sac Fly’d Kepler home.

Keeping the game tight, Henry Jesse Winkler doubled in the seventh, and then came in via a single by Freddy Galvis. The Twins threatened in the eighth with men on first and second and one out, but a double-play ball off the bat of Nelson Cruz erased that threat, so the game went to the ninth tied. Meat Raffle locked down the ninth and the Twins couldn’t score either. Thielbar came back for the tenth, and put out Galvis via pop-up before yielding to Sergio Romo. Romo gave up two singles, scoring the “ghost runner,” to put the Reds ahead, and issuing two walks giving the Reds the final margin of victory. Not a great outing for the bearded one, as he couldn’t find a single out. Jorge Alcala finally cleaned up the mess, after letting another of Romo’s runners score. The Twins also scored their ghost runner, but really, it doesn’t matter.

For the rest of the scoreboard watching, Cleveland beat Pittsburgh 8-6, Miami beat the Yankees 5-0, and Oakland beat Seattle 6-2. If my California math (h/t Bert) is right, that means the Twins, as a three-seed, should face the Astros, at Target Field. Perhaps Kenta Maeda and Rich Hill have some unfinished business to settle?


Everyone who commented here this season. Sincerely, thanks!
Rich Hill: 5.2 IP, 4K, 2 hits, 1 ER
Luis Arraez: 2-4



Roll Call:


I’m not enough of a Joel to give it to myself, so come get your (imaginary) trophies, Brandon and sandwiches.

# Recs Commenter Comment Link
8 TJ Gorsegner Go Twins Go
7 Brandon Brooks GO TWINS GO
7 Imakesandwichesforaliving bop it?
5 doomsdayshark Rooting interests for the day
3 doomsdayshark Blue Jays just lost
3 SooFoo Fan Billy Hamilton steals home, 6-0
3 BH-Twins It's a bit confusing, but if Toronto loses their game, which they are trailing to the Orioles, they can't catch NYY and the Yankees will stay #5, so the Twins wouldn't play NYY first
3 Uncle Lincoln Okay, screw it.
3 BH-Twins That must be it. No sane person would want to play LAD if given a choice. Except the Twins of course, a rematch of the '65 series would be the best :blush:
2 Uncle Lincoln I’d settle for a blown strike call on the White Sox if it means they lose.
2 BH-Twins I was hoping for the Twins to play Houston, but the way the White Sox are playing now, I'd rather the Twins win today and host Chicago.
2 cpappa 10-1 Cubbies
2 doomsdayshark Dammit, Baltimore
2 doomsdayshark Hill's been really impressive today
2 Matt Monitto Yes, that's also a balk with runners on
2 Joefishy Left foot moved first which starts the delivery
2 2wins87 I'm on board
2 BH-Twins I have a call..... Arraez will go 8 for 8 today with 7 doubles.
2 doomsdayshark And the Marlins are beating the Yankees 2-0
1 Joeyself Yeah, if I had my druthers, I'd pick Houston as the first round opponent.
1 BH-Twins We're going to need Polanco to hit the ball this week in the first series. He's tailed off a lot in September. Need the top guys on all cylinders for the playoffs.
1 BH-Twins none here either, but I sure didn't want the Twins playing Cleveland right now, the way they've been playing the past ten days. Now we're likely playing WSox or Astros
1 Uncle Lincoln Would be nice to see the Spiders draw the Yankees first round...
1 davethekid put Rogers in and CIN will win
1 Uncle Lincoln Which, in fairness, would be nothing compared to getting "Indians'd."
1 davethekid in a short 3 game series, I'd give CLE a pretty good chance with Bieber and their other starters to beat NYY
1 BH-Twins I just don't want to finish the regular season with one of those "free runner on 2nd base" games. Fortunately, extra innings in the playoffs will be played correctly.
1 TJ Gorsegner Welcome to my life, I routinely have to convert across three time zones
1 davethekid Yup - whew...
1 davethekid NL 8 slot race is hilarious
1 cpappa Ugh, lets just win cause the White Sox are trying a comeback
1 cpappa And of course the Cubs give up a lead off hit
1 doomsdayshark Nice work, defense.
1 cpappa You are effing cursing us
1 mefoolonhill Nice work, Romo!
1 timprov Pitching changes in both games at once.
1 cpappa If the Cubs blow this, this is on all of you hoping the Twins would lose to the Reds in order to get the Astros
1 doomsdayshark Whatever happens
1 doomsdayshark And the Cubs are bringing in a reliever with a 6.75 ERA
1 Imakesandwichesforaliving GO TWIMS GO
1 doomsdayshark Same.
1 doomsdayshark Are you TRYING to jinx us?
1 timprov Cubs win!
1 SooFoo Fan [no title]
1 BH-Twins It's completely unfair that SFG misses the playoffs, with the same record as Milwaukee. Throughout MLB history, tied records always played an extra game to decide it.
1 SooFoo Fan GO TWINS GO!!
1 Uncle Lincoln No Spider-love here.
1 doomsdayshark Cubs lead 1-0
1 Uncle Lincoln If nothing dramatic happens for either team in the next few innings, sure looks like the Twinkies will claim that coveted divisional Run-Differential crown from the Sox.
1 cpappa Personally I don't care if we play the White Sox or Cleveland again in the playoffs
1 Joefishy I need some ADD meds to follow this thread.
1 Brandon Brooks Lolololol
1 doomsdayshark HA!
1 Joeyself Yeah, it counts as a steal of home
1 doomsdayshark Ok, slightly less awesome
1 TJ Gorsegner factual statements
1 Joeyself This breakdown is too cool
1 Joefishy Yes. I don't need to see CWS or Cleveland.
1 Joeyself However, if I have to pick between Chicago and Cleveland
1 TJ Gorsegner Cy Hill
1 TwinBob Cubs keep adding on 6-0
1 trigonzobob But didn't that same seeding rule ...
1 Joeyself Agreed.
1 doomsdayshark Looking like the Twins going to win the division by default.
1 doomsdayshark The Twins haven't been as good
1 BH-Twins It's tough for GM's to sign guys to contracts like this, because so often they don't pan out. Fans want big signings, but the risks can be astronomical.
1 Matt Monitto ...a balk to open the scoring
1 doomsdayshark Amusing tidbit about the Chicago game
1 Brandon Brooks That is absolutely what I like to hear
1 doomsdayshark Mountain time is best time
1 Joefishy Mystery Meat.
1 TwinBob 3-0 cubs
1 TwinBob Let’s go Twins.
1 Joeyself I want the Yankees on the other side of the bracket
1 2wins87 Should have read the hitters mind rather than his catcher's
1 Joeyself Playing mind games with the hitter.
1 CCHOF5yearstoolate I looked away, and then back in time to see Arrraez running back on the field with a piece of gum.
1 BH-Twins I'm guessing he's from AA