clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Twins 2, Pirates 0: Go Figure

A surprising turn of events

Pittsburgh Pirates v Minnesota Twins Photo by David Berding/Getty Images

This afternoon, the Minnesota Twins scored two runs. In the bottom of the fourth inning, Ed Julien lofted a deep drive to left field that barely missed the bleachers—but was enough to let Donovan Solano trot home from third. In the sixth, Julien got a double past the Pirates outfielders—again plating Solano.

MLB: Pittsburgh Pirates at Minnesota Twins
The Canadian provided the offensive pop today
Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

But the real story today was the remarkable pitching performance from Dallas Keuchel.

A former AL Cy Young Award winner for the Houston Astros in 2017, Keuchel had not been an effective major league moundsman since the pandemic-shortened 2020 campaign (with the Chicago White Sox).

When the Twins signed him earlier this season, it smacked of “minor league depth”—a guy to fill out the St. Paul Saints starting rotation. But when Joe Ryan went on the IL with a groin pull, Dallas took the Target Field bump on August 6 against the Arizona Diamondbacks.

That first Twins start: 5 IP, 1 ER (decent)—but 8 hits allowed and zero strikeouts.

Keuchel’s next effort? Total system failure. In Rockyland, the Philadelphia Phillies boxed him for 6 ER in 1.2 innings. Again, Keuchel failed to induce a K of backwards or forwards variety.

Minnesota Twins v Philadelphia Phillies
No answers to be found
Photo by Tim Nwachukwu/Getty Images

It seemed for all the world like Dallas was done in a Twins uniform.

But with Ryan not quite ready to return and recent off days giving a respite to other Twins starters, Keuchel drew the opening nod again today. The results personified why baseball is a sport that will never be figured out:

Dallas Keuchel threw 6 perfect innings against the Pittsburgh Pirates. He even recorded three strikeouts! Only a Reynolds double with one out in the seventh brought Rocco Baldelli out of the dugout and saw a clearly-emotional Keuchel leave to the standing ovation of the 25,987 Target Field faithful.

From that point, the high leverage wing of the Minnesota bullpen—Jax, Thielbar, & Duran—locked down the back end.

MLB: Pittsburgh Pirates at Minnesota Twins
The only person to cross home plate
Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Folks—you just never know. Will Dallas Keuchel ever start another contest for the Twins? TBD. But for one glorious afternoon in August, he proved to his fans, his teammates, and—probably most importantly—himself that he can still ply his trade at the highest of levels.

Your final: Minnesota Twins 2, Pittsburgh Pirates 0.


-Keuchel gets this category to himself.


Comment of the Game

davethekid gives an update on the growing AL Central lead!