After a difficult series against the Chicago White Sox, I was hoping the Twins would find their true form Friday night and blast a few home runs out of Wrigley Field for a convincing Game 1 win in their series with the Chicago Cubs.
But that was not to be. The Cubs scored a run in the first inning and that is all they would need for the next eight as the Cubs blanked the Twins 1-0.
Twins pitcher Rich Hill allowed one run over seven innings with five strikeouts, but Cubs pitcher Kyle Hendricks was just a little better, striking out 10 over eight innings. The Cubs scored a run on three hits; the Twins scored no runs on three hits. And that was the game.
Michael Pineda gets the ball Saturday.
-Pitcher Jake Odorizzi is headed back to the injured list for the third time this season after he developed a blister on his pitching hand that forced him to make an early exit in his last start.
-Catcher Mitch Garver has been activated from the injured list and was in the lineup Friday night. Garver has really struggled this season, and he did so again on Friday, striking out twice in three trips to the plate. To make room for Garver, the Twins sent Willians Astudillo to the team’s alternate training site in St. Paul.
-What happens when you’re the hottest hitter on the club? You get moved up in the lineup. Byron Buxton, who has made a home near the bottom of the lineup, hit leadoff on Friday and was only one of three players with a hit. The others: Josh Donaldson and Jake Cave.
-Friday’s pitchers’ duel lasted all of two hours, 34 minutes.