The most important thing you need to know is that the Twins lost on a walk-off bloop single to center field that scored the winning run from first.
If that’s ALL you needed to know, that could have been the entire recap, but some of you sticklers may want details, so here they come. Look out, because I’m just gonna toss them out there and be indiscriminate about their landing spot.
Twins got the lead first in this one. Josh Donaldson singled home Cruz in the first half-inning of the game, but the fourteenth half-inning of the afternoon, because the home team didn’t bat in the bottom half of their seventh inning earlier in the day, meaning the game finished after the thirteenth and the fourteenth was saved until tonight’s first. With me so far?
Well, so is Akil Baddoo, whose bases-clearing triple in the second swung things right round, baby, right round to the Detroit Tigers. But wait! Donaldson strikes again, with a solo shot to left in the fourth (his 14th round-tripper so far this summer.)
Minnesota tied the game in the fifth, when Nelson Cruz produced the team’s only run of a minor rally with an RBI ground-ball single. The score would hold until the eighth. The eighth, you say? Yes, but not a NORMAL eighth — a Rob Manfred Presents: The Eighth Inning eighth.
Pitching recap, real quick - apart from the second-inning difficulty, Maeda turned in a good line. Five innings, three runs on three hits, and eight strikeouts over 90 pitches. The Tigers relied on a more patchwork effort to get through their defensive innings, but they won the game, so give them a break.
Nelson Cruz was hit by a pitch in the top of the eighth to put two men on. No, he didn’t split into two — there was already a guy on second, remember? That guy on second (Nick Gordon, by the way) scored on a lucky little wild pitch, moments after advancing to third base on a sacrifice fly.
4-3 Twins, bottom eighth.
But you already know where this is going! I spoiled it in the beginning, and presumably, some of you also watched the baseball game. With one out, Manfred runner Derek Hill swiped third, then scored when Jonathan Schoop put one through the right side.
With two outs and Schoop at first, Miguel Cabrera hit a towering pop-up into center field — a weak little nubber so expertly placed within the outfield, that after what felt like three minutes of hangtime, nobody had gotten to the ball. Gordon and Andrelton Simmons arrived to the landing zone a second too late, and an alert Schoop was trucking it along the bases.
A better relay back in might have made things interesting, but the actual play wasn’t close; Schoop scored, skip skap, skee skoo, ski, ska, studs time.
DH Nelson Cruz (2-for-3, RBI, R)
3B Josh Donaldson (2-for-4, 2 RBI, R, HR)
RP Hansel Robles (2 IP, 2 K)
C Ryan Jeffers (0-for-4, 2 K)
RP Taylor Rogers? Manfred makes duds difficult... (0.2 IP, 2 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 2 K)
Actually, you know what? No. Rogers isn’t a dud. Rogers allowed one hit and struck out two. Then he gave up a walk-off single on A POP FLY WITH AN XBA OF .000. Congratulations, Manfred. Somehow, this hit is your fault too. A walk-off single with an XBA of .000. WHAT?!
ROBOT ROLL CALL: