Bailey Ober gets allowed to start the sixth inning, is quickly yanked, yet Minnesota’s one offensive burst against José Berríos is enough to notch Ober the W (despite the Twins going 0-for-everything with RISP).
More importantly, CG19 and gintzer win our bobblehead giveaway contest! CG19 kinda violated the “random number” spirit of using the last pitcher’s final ERA digits, and doing so only once Minnesota had a late lead and bullpen-by-numbers Baldelli was very likely to bring in Alex Colome (requiring some pretty simple math to figure out his probable ERA)... but what the hey, the rules is the rules. Plus, per his description, CG19’s only Twins possessions are “a 2007 Twins lunchbox and a stuffed animal Twins piranha,” which are pretty cool possessions, so it’s fitting that he gets to take his pick of our prizes tonite. And fitting that gintzer gets stuff after his epic commenting session on Wednesday.
1: Marcus Semien (pronounced “love juice”) leads the league in extra-base hits; he does a double here, but Bo Bichette (pronounced “be cranky at”) can’t score him. Minnesota gets two on with none out, and Berríos escapes it. I make the prediction that “either Sano hits a dinger here or Berríos keeps the Twins scoreless tonight”; we’ll see how that goes.
2: I don’t usually make baseball predictions, because they are Dumb. Anybody can read stats, and identifying which stats mean more than others for a particular player/team/game is something experts should do, not idiots who want “I was right!” internet points. That said, I’m right so far, and the Twins can’t get anything off La Makina.
3: My prediction about my prediction being Dumb was Smart! Simmons (boo!) walks, Arraez (yay!) triples him in, and Lord Byron strokes a Dong. Some fan somewhere wins $1600 for that Arraez Qwik Trip triple, which (I think) is a pool that goes up $50 every triple-less game. Good for that fan. Shoulda entered the bobblehead contest, though — what’s money when you can own Precious Memories? (Responds winner, were they to read this, “I could buy those on EBay for $50 and have $1550 left over,” because winners are no Fun.) Twims 3-0
4: I mean, one of these days, I’ll actually quit by just posting STINKY BUTTS SWEATY NUTS over and over in the gamethread until I get banned, although tonight’s not that night. Ober is quietly pitching very well against a very good offense. Meanwhile (actually, later), the Twins AGAIN start this inning with two guys on base but get nothing, because Berríos is very good and the Twins offense less so.
5: Bailey only has 72 pitches, but he’s thrown five scoreless innings, so his night is probably Ober. Radio mentions that Kyle Gibson hit a home run. Would you like to see it? Here you go! I didn’t know he was a Phillie now; they gave him a fun homer hat to wear.
6: Again, my predictions about predictions being wrong are perfect! Ober does start the inning, and gets to throw 10 more times before Semien longballs him and that’s No More Fun for You. Berríos has ten strikeouts, the equivalent of six when adjusted for Non-Twins lineups. Us 3, Blue Jays NOT Bluebirds 1
7: Radio is talking about how Jorge Alcala (he pitched after Ober) and Juan Minaya should give fans “hope for next season.” Umm, whaaaaat? Berríos gets gone, too, which cheers up Ryan Jeffers so much (two strikeouts) that he leads off with a double. This ends just like the previous two times Minnesota had a guy on second with no outs, AKA, FAIL (Simmons popping up a bunt attempt to the catcher doesn’t help).
8: Duff Man knows when to hold ‘em. Young Jays fireballer Nate Pearson knows when to fold ‘em. Sanos when to walk away, and nobody Runs.
9: Bizarrely, Toronto’s good hitters decide to swing very early against Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad “closer” Alex Colome, and Twims win!
This loss drops Toronto two games behind the forking Yanquis for the WC with eight games left, which more than one TTer thinks to be lame. Still, Jays, if ya can’t beat the bad teams when it counts... well, the teams with a zillion times more payroll will pass you. Robot Roll Call:
COTG goes to trigonzobob for A) noticing I accidentally typoed Berríos’s baBIP as .777, and B) being the only commenter who didn’t want gifts, merely accurate numbers, which are The Greatest Gift Of All.
Tune in tomorrow at 6:10 for the Rod Stewart-sounding Jays pitcher Robbie Ray against Minnesota’s shouldn’t-be-a-starter John Gant... tune in a bit earlier to catch Justin Morneau being made a member of the Twins’ Hall Of Fame. Which isn’t quite the Hormel Row Of Fame, but it’s still pretty neat for him. Tonight's radio broadcast had fun appearances by other 2000s Twins, and there could be more on Saturday!