June 28, 2021

Twins rebound nicely after Game 1 dud

The Twins lost to the Cleveland Indians on Thursday, mustering all of six hits in the 4-1 loss at Target Field. After the 10-7 loss on Tuesday to the Reds, it amounted to two straight losses and a feeling that the Twins really aren’t ready for prime time.

But they won 8-7 on Friday and 8-2 on Sunday to take the rain-shortened series from the Indians. Saturday’s rainout will be made up as a September doubleheader.

The Twins are once again 10 games under .500 and have a two-game winning streak. So what does it all mean? Are they ready to turn the corner or not?

Their upcoming schedule suggests that if they want to make a move in the division, this would be the time to do it because most of July will be spent battling the AL Central. And they get a quick tune up with a three-game road series at Chicago to end June. The White Sox are 3-7 in their last 10 games while the Twins are 7-3.

Kenta Maeda gets the ball Monday.

Extra innings…

-The Twins made it look easy on Sunday, scoring six of their eight runs via the long ball. Andrelton Simmons hit a two-run shot, Josh Donaldson added a solo blast and Nelson Cruz teed off for a three-run home run, his 17th.

-Perhaps more impressive was J.A. Happ, who made a quality start to improve to 4-3 and trimmed his ERA to 5.83 from 6.09. He allowed two runs over six innings with seven strikeouts. Relievers Tyler Duffey and Caleb Thielbar pitched three scoreless innings.

-Sunday’s win was marred by an ugly incident in the Cleveland outfield after Josh Naylor, running in to catch a fly ball, collided with the second baseman and reportedly fractured a leg.

-The Game 1 dud wasn’t Jose Berrios’ fault. Berrios allowed one run over six-plus innings and struck out nine in the no-decision start.

-Friday’s 8-7 win was paced by Luis Arraez at the top of the order, who went 3-for-4, including two triples, and drove in three runs.

-How about old friend Kyle Gibson of the Texas Rangers? Gibson remains undefeated this season and improved to 6-0 after he shut out the Royals on two hits over seven innings with 10 strikeouts on Saturday. A check of Baseball-Reference.com shows that 80 percent of Gibson’s starts this season have been quality starts.


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.