July 31, 2019

Twins’ AL Central lead is back to 3 games

Byron Buxton hit a home run, Miguel Sano cracked an RBI double and four pitchers, including the newly acquired, Sergio Romo, made it stand to edge the Miami Marlins 2-1 on Tuesday.

Even better, the Cleveland Indians ran into a buzzsaw by the name of Justin Verlander and were shut out on two hits to lose 2-0. The Twins win and Tribe loss means the club from Minnesota increased its cushion in the central to three games.

Jake Odorizzi improved to 12-5 after he allowed one run over five-plus innings, then three relievers, including Romo, pitched scoreless baseball the rest of the way. Ace lefty, Taylor Rogers, restored his ace status after he earned his 16th save on 12 pitches. And rather than Rogers setting up Romo, it was the other way around. In his inning of work, Romo induced two fly outs, hit a batter and struck out a batter.

Jose Berrios gets the ball Wednesday. I expect him to have a good game against a weak Marlins lineup.

Extra innings…

-After a steady diet of AL Central teams, the Indians finally met their match in the Houston Astros on Tuesday. Verlander struck out 13 over seven innings to improve to 14-4.

-Twins/Marlins is apparently not a big draw in south Florida after about 8,000 attended the game. Of course, one could say the game of baseball is not a big draw. The Marlins rank 15th out of 15 teams in the National League in attendance, according to Baseball-Reference.com. That’s pretty sad.

-After Buxton’s home run, the 2019 Twins now have 11 players with 10 or more home runs, which ties a franchise record, according to MLB.com. The Twins have now hit 206 home runs this season. The franchise record is 225, which was set in 1963.

COMMENTS

Hi, I’m Rolf Boone, Twins fan.

I became a fan of the Minnesota Twins after a friendly wager in the early 1980s. I survived Ron Davis, the meltdown in Cleveland, Phil Bradley at the Kingdome and then marveled at a rising generation of stars and two World Series wins in 1987 and 1991. Brad Radke made the 1990s bearable, while Kirby Puckett’s eye injury, exit from the game and eventual death made it almost too much to bear. The new century ushered in more talent — Joe Mauer, Johan Santana, Joe Nathan, Torii Hunter, Justin Morneau — and consecutive seasons of playoff baseball, followed by consecutive seasons of losing baseball. A winning season returned in 2015. So here we are. Go Twins.