Who’s ready for a little late-September stat-padding? New managers Kyle Farmer and Jorge Polanco are, that’s who.
Don’t let the score deceive you — the Twins had a 14-0 lead in this one before allowing Colorado a couple of runs, as a treat. It was the kind of offensive explosion befitting a Coors Field game against a 102-loss Colorado Rockies squad; everybody in the starting lineup got in on the action and scored a run.
Given that none of those runs have any bearing whatsoever on the outcome of Minnesota’s 2023 regular season, I’ll keep things brief, but credit where credit is due.
Edouard Julien went 3-for-5 out of the leadoff spot, driving in three, adding a homer, and scoring twice. Max Kepler had a three-run, two-out homer in the sixth inning; Trevor Larnach only reached once, but did it in style with the Twins’ latest grand slam.
Matt Wallner also went yard, his a mere solo shot.
Meanwhile, Bullpen Night in Colorado went just fine for Farmer + Polanco’s Magical Arm Barn, featuring opener Emilio Pagan and bulk man Chris Paddack, who notably threw three shutout innings and notched four strikeouts. The only blemishes came from the late-inning gang; Caleb Thielbar allowed two homers, and Dallas Keuchel gave up four runs on six hits in nearly three innings of work to close out the game.
Of course, you wouldn’t be blamed for having your focus elsewhere tonight. The Chicago Cubs blew a 92% chance to make the postseason, as Fangraphs reported as recently as September 6th.
So too, the Cincinnati Reds saw a dream season die, as the Miami Marlins (and our boy Luis Arraez) punched their ticket to the playoffs. Meanwhile, the Seattle Mariners dropped out of the AL Wild Card picture, meaning the field is set in both leagues — just not the matchups.
The MLB playoff teams are set!— Talkin’ Baseball (@TalkinBaseball_) October 1, 2023
NL: Braves, Dodgers, Brewers, Phillies, Marlins, Diamondbacks
AL: Orioles, Rangers, Twins, Rays, Blue Jays, Astros pic.twitter.com/eAccwax7AW
Most notably to the Twins, the Texas Rangers are no longer in the picture as the Wild Card opponent. It is most likely to be Houston, and could only otherwise be Toronto.
So despite the personnel in place, the seeding will come down to Sunday. Keep on eye on the scores, and we’ll see you then. Most importantly, thanks to everyone for yet another wonderful year of community here in the Twinkie Town comment sections...you are all much appreciated and I always enjoy writing over the weekends to talk Twins baseball.
GO TWINS GO!
2B Edouard Julien (3-for-5, 3 RBI, 2 R, HR)
LF-RF Matt Wallner (2-for-4, 3 R, 2 RBI, BB, HR)
DH Trevor Larnach (1-for-5, R, 4 RBI, HR)
RP Chris Paddack (W, 3 IP, 2 H, 4 K)
NO DUDS! TWINS WIN!