After losing five of their last six games, the Minnesota Twins travelled to eastern Wisconsin looking for a win to get back on track. The Milwaukee Brewers, on the tails of division foes for the National League Central and also on the back door of the second Wild Card spot, looked to get a win and stay in the playoff race. A nice two-game border battle between two former rivals got underway.
Everybody preached about how Martin Perez needed to pitch well tonight for the Twins. With a 6.04 ERA and 13 homers allowed in ten starts since the All-Star Break, he needed to perform tonight. His night wasn’t the greatest – he labored by pitching in full counts five times and had base-runners in each inning – but he was able to go six innings.
Pérez had some help from the defense tonight. With Ryan Braun on second base and Yasmani Grandal on first base in the third inning, Mike Moustakas grounded to the right side of second base out of the range of Luis Arraez. But no fear: All-Star Jorge Polanco came over from a shade on the left side of second to field the ball, do a 360-degree turn, and throw to C.J. Cron and get the out to end the threat.
The Brew Crew would break through in the fourth inning. With one out, Hernan Pérez was able to get a single, then pitcher Chase Anderson was able to lay down a bunt to Pérez (the pitcher), who made a wonky throw to Polanco, who was charged with an error by not catching the ball and allowing Pérez (the runner) to advance to third. The Brewers took advantage of it as Lorenzo Cain grounded into a force-out, scoring Pérez (the runner). After issuing a walk, Pérez (the pitcher) was able to induce a ground-out from Christian Yelich to end the threat.
Anderson allowed base-runners the first three innings and that third inning is when the Bomba Squad struck. The old adage – WALKS WILL HAUNT – held true as Anderson walked lead-off batter Max Kepler. Someone somewhere ordered a side of GarvSauce as Mitch Garver took a four-seamer to left-center field and into the home bullpen, giving the Twins a 2-0 lead. After a Polanco ground-out, Eddie Rosario drew a walk, and Miguel Sano was able to move him to third on a single to center field. Luis Arraez grounded out for the second out of the inning, but was able to bring Rosario home to make it 3-0. Cron would pop-out to end the threat.
Anderson was able to retire six more Twins batters in order before he was pulled from the game after the fifth. Pérez (still the pitcher) would face only seven more batters before seeing his night end after the sixth. Again, not a gem for Pérez (still the pitcher), but not a clunker: 6.0 IP, 1 R (0 ER), 4 BB, 3 K.
The Twins would tack on one more run in the top of the seventh off of reliever Jake Faria. Marwin Gonzalez would single and then move to second on a wild pitch. Ehire Adrianza, pinch-hitting for Pérez (the pitcher), would double to left field, plating Gonzalez and bringing the score to 4-1 in favor of Minnesota. Everyone else hated the idea of scoring more and went down in order, including Garver and Polanco on full counts.
Little did they know, they needed some more runs as Milwaukee flipped the game in the bottom of the seventh. Ryne Harper was called upon in relief of Pérez (yep, still the pitcher), and allowed a single to Keston Hiura, who came around to score on a double by Yelich, making the score 4-2, Twins. The old adage – CATCHER’S INTERFERENCE WILL HAUNT – held true as Granadal took one of Harper’s two select curveball choices just over the right field wall into that fancy seating area. Rocco Baldelli said, “lol no,” and opted for Tyler Duffey. He got himself into a jam and then got himself out of said jam, and that’s that.
SIRENS SOUND. BOMBA SQUAD ACTIVATED. The top of the eighth was a long half-inning as Craig Counsell wanted to take advantage of using as many pitchers as he can before the rule change takes effect next season. Trying to do the pitcher-batter match-up chess game, Counsell had Drew Pomeranz start the inning. He yielded a double to Rosario, a walk to Sano, and a fly-out to Arraez. Counsell then pitted Matt Albers against Cron, which lead to a full-count strikout. Then Counsell went and got Josh Hader against Marwin Gonzalez, who went full MarWIN Gonzalez and took the first pitch from Hader to the Milwaukee bullpen in left-center and gave the Twins a lead again by a score of 7-5. Jonathan Schoop struck out to end the inning because that’s Jonathan Schoop now, I guess.
Sam Dyson was able to send down the Brewers in order to cruise through the bottom of the eighth while the top of the ninth saw the Twins try to add some insurance runs, but failed miserably. Sergio Romo was able to pitch an almost-clean bottom of the ninth to close the door and secure the win for Minnesota, earning his second save with his new club.
These two teams meet for a get-away matinee tomorrow. First pitch will be at 1:10p Central with Kyle Gibson taking the mound for Minnesota. Some creep named TBD will take the mound for Milwaukee. Also to note is that if you like soaking in the baseball game with your eyeballs, this one will only be on the YouTube. It’ll still be on the TIBN for us radio lovers.
Twins 7, Brewers 5
W: Duffey (2-1)
L: Pomeranz (2-10)
S: Romo (19)
- The Cleveland baseball club lost to the Boston Red Sox tonight (thanks, Boston!), so the Twins are atop the A.L. Central again.
- This is the Twins’ first win in Milwaukee since August 10, 2017.
- Martín Pérez: 6.0 IP, 6 H, 1 R (0 ER), 4 BB, 3 K
- Jorge Polanco: 0-3, BB, E, but a good defensive play
Deep-fried chicken, mashed potatoes with homemade gravy, a biscuit, mixed vegetables, and a beverage of choice:
- CG19 and Brandon Brooks – both were able to answer the trivia question correctly. Dietrich Enns was the last Twins pitcher to get his first major-league hit in his first major-league at-bat in Milwaukee.
- Our site overlord, TJ, for calling a Garver homer tonight.
COMMENT OF THE GAME THREAD
THOSE WHO BELIEVE THE TWINS WILL WIN THE A.L. CENTRAL
Thanks to all for coming to the game thread tonight!