The squad needed this one, and boy did they get it. The ascent begins today, folks.
Things got off to a quick start for the visitors in this one. For just the second time this season, Sir Byron Buxton was in the leadoff role. It turned out to be a savvy move by Rocco Baldelli, as the Twins started the tilt with back-to-back home runs from Buxton and Josh Donaldson. Then, after a walk to Nelson Cruz, Jorge Polanco parked a two-run bomb to put the Twins up 4-0 before Cleveland even had a chance with the sticks.
The Twins were back at it in the second. Alex Kirilloff singled, advanced on a wild pitch, and went to third on a Buxton double. After a Donaldson walk, Cruz came through with a single, driving in two more runs.
Amed Rosario (not to be confused with old friend Eddie Rosario, also a Clevelandian) knocked a solo shot to make it a 6-1 game, but Willians Astudillo crushed a homer in the top of the following frame to expand the lead back to six runs.
On the other side of the ball, J.A. Happ continued his impressive start to the season. He scattered four hits and a walk over seven innings, giving up two earned runs while striking out three. Somehow, he’s been the best starter on the staff so far this season, which is equal parts exciting and terrifying.
Mitch Garver sauced the Clevelandians with a pair of dingers. First came a solo shot in the fifth inning, followed by a laser in the top of the seventh that plated two runs.
Randy Dobnak pitched two scoreless innings with only one hit and three strikeouts, and the Twins eased out of Cleveland with a 10-2 victory.
- Oh, yeah, how could I forget: Byron Buxton was 5-for-5 with a home run, two doubles, and a stolen base. Is ... the best player in baseball on the worst team in baseball? (The answer is probably no to both of those questions, but Buxton will likely lead position players in Wins Above Replacements after today, and the Twins do have the worst record in all of MLB, so...technically, the answer is yes as of today.)
- While this wasn’t enough to say that the 2019 Twins are back ... three homers in an inning, four in three innings, and six for the game was a fun way to win. More of that, please.
- Did I mention that Happ is now 2-0 with a 1.96 ERA on the season?
- Hey — if the Twins score 10 runs, it doesn’t matter how worn-down and ineffective the bullpen is!
- Feels nice to win one, doesn’t it?
- Byron Buxton: 5-for-5, HR, 2 2B, 2 R, SB
- J.A. Happ: 7 IP, 2 ER, 4 H, 3 K, BB
- Nelson Cruz: 2-for-4, BB, 2 RBI, R
- Mitch Garver: 2-for-5, 2 HR, 3 RBI
- You know what? No duds today. We need this.