June 16, 2017

Series with Mariners ends on right note for Twins

It was a wild four-game series with the Seattle Mariners.

A blowout loss, followed by a blowout win — the Twins scored 20 runs on 28 hits — followed by a disappointing outing from Ervin Santana. But the series ended well Thursday after pitcher Jose Berrios went eight innings and limited the M’s to two runs.

Berrios is a changed man after he struggled in his rookie year with the Twins. Thursday’s win now makes him 6-1 on the season with a 2.74 ERA. He gave up five hits with one walk and six strikeouts. He also has five quality starts this season, pitching at least six innings with three or fewer earned runs.

Berrios has worked well with catcher and noted pitch-framer, Jason Castro, but Berrios on Thursday was once again paired with backup catcher (and relief pitcher) Chis Gimenez and did just fine. It didn’t hurt, too, that Gimenez homered twice in the 6-2 win.

The Twins split the four-game series with the M’s, but still maintain a two-game lead over the second place Cleveland Indians. But now things are going to get interesting because the Tribe come to town Friday for a four-game series, including a doubleheader on Saturday. The Twins have a good chance to widen their lead in the American League Central.

Extra innings…

-The Twins are 34-29. This time last season they were 20-43.

-Tuesday’s 20-7 win over the M’s was one for the record books. The Twins set a franchise record with 28 hits in that game. Eddie Rosario had four hits, including three home runs; Eduardo Escobar had five hits; Castro and Kennys Vargas had four hits; Max Kepler had three hits; and Robbie Grossman, Jorge Polanco and Brian Dozier had two hits apiece. Hard to believe that 3-time batting champ Joe Mauer was held to a single.

-Kyle Gibson earned his fourth win of the season in that blowout victory, but didn’t pitch all that well. He gave up six runs on 12 hits in six innings, but when you’re backed by 28 hits, I guess it’s hard to lose.

-Nik Turley gets the ball on Friday.




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.