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Gud Twins Tourney, Minneapolis Mid-Round, Game 6: A scoreboard staring contest

But eventually, one team had to break.

6/1/02- Minneapolis, MN - Twins shortstop Cristian Guzman is congratulated by teammate Jacque Jones after Guzman hit a home run during the seventh inning that scored both players to add to the Twins lead, 4-1, over Anaheim at the Metrodome.
Onward, Cristian soldiers.

[The scoreboard] was like two people having a staring contest, each trying desperately not to blink.
-Dan Gutman, “World Series Classics,” on Game 7 of the 1991 World Series

TJ Division

(2) Scrabble Babble 0
(1) Wonder Years 2
Series tied 3-3

A singular truth about every pitchers’ duel, both hurlers shutting down offenses inning after inning, is that the game cannot end until a team scores a run.

In Game 6, that run came off the bat of Cristian Guzmán.

Pinch hitting for Jacque Jones, Guzmán hit a walk-off two-run home run to give the Wonder Years a 2-0 win and extend the series to a deciding seventh game.

Before Guzmán, the game’s story belonged to starters Pete Redfern (ONE) and Tom Zachary (QZX), both of whom set down batter after batter, each batsman coming to the plate only to return to the dugout with precise promptness. Redfern allowed just three hits while striking out 11 over seven frames, while Zachary, across one extra inning, allowed five hits, just as many as the men he struck out.

In the ninth inning, that story changed.

While Wonder hurlers Bill Dailey and Dick Hyde kept Scrabble bats quiet in the eighth and ninth, the Babble summoned Zach Duke from the bullpen, a choice that proved folly. Zoilo Versalles opened the ninth with a single, and the Years’ manager summoned Guzmán from the bench in Jones’ place.

That choice showed itself to be wise.

One game left in the Mid-Round.

MMR (Game 5) | MMR (Game 6) | MMR (Game 7)