The streak is over. All is right. The Twins will never lose again.
Okay maybe not, but it’s still nice to get this losing streak over and done with, even if the offense hasn’t exactly turned things around.
Michael A. Taylor provided all of the offense for the Twins, who never really put together any consistent threats throughout the game. His two-run shot in the top of the 5th put the Twins up 2-0 to finally scratch some runs across against Toronto starter Yusei Kikuchi.
Sonny Gray took the mound for the Twins and was his typical dominant self the first two times through the order. However, that pesky third time came around and Gray ran into trouble once again despite smooth sailing up to that point.
Toronto managed to get a couple guys on ahead of the top of the lineup in the bottom of the 5th. Hit machine Bo Bichette singled in the Blue Jays’ first run of the game. Vlad Jr. followed with a walk to load the bases before Sonny managed to get Brandon Belt and Matt Chapman to end the threat.
With Gray only at 76 pitches, but struggling, the Twins pulled their starter in favor of Jovani Moran who got two quick outs before giving up a two out single. Brock Stewart came in to finish the inning, but gave up an RBI double to pinch hitter George Springer.
Griffin Jax pitched a scoreless 8th and gave way to Jhoan Duran, who didn’t have the prettiest outing, but undoubtedly left the game as the Twins’ MVP. Duran hit Santiago Espinal with a pitch and surrendered another double to Springer, giving the Jays 2nd and 3rd with no one out. But Duran buckled down to get Alejandro Kirk to ground out to second, holding the runners, and then striking out Bichette.
With two down and first base open, Vlad Jr. was intentionally walked to face Brandon Belt. With the count 3-2 and the bases loaded, Belt destroyed a ball that was hit directly at Willi Castro at second base. Somehow, on to the 10th.
The Twins were able to scrape one more run across via a Michael A. Taylor sac fly that likely would have been an out at home if the ball didn’t take such a large bounce off the turf.
Duran came back out in the 10th despite throwing a ton of high-stress pitches in the previous inning, but the Twins desperately needed a win and only had trust in Duran at that point. Duran gutted out the inning, picked up the win, and finally ended the Twins’ losing streak.
It took almost flawless pitching in big spots and a couple of lucky bounces, but a win is a win. After his performance, Duran will likely be unavailable for the remainder of the series, but there’s not much more you can ask for from your future All-Star closer.
Michael A. Taylor: 1-3, HR, 3 RBI
Royce Lewis: 4-4
Jhoan Duran: 2 IP, 10 batters faced, 1 win secured
Not a dud in sight, Twins win!!!
Comment of the game goes to our good friend Joel. He won a hotly debated toe wrestling match. Sandwiches wanted to challenge the decision but the victory took place right in front of an umpire, so his hands were tied. To the victor go the spoils.