The Twins won their second consecutive series on Wednesday with a 5-0 win over the Seattle Mariners. The Twins won 3-2 on Monday, were blanked 5-0 on Tuesday and then returned the favor the following day.
Twins pitching scattered five hits over nine innings, including a five inning, three-hit performance from Sonny Gray, who finally returned to the mound from injury after last pitching for the Twins on May 29.
It’s good to have Gray back as is the return of starter Joe Ryan, who had been sidelined by COVID-19. Ryan wasn’t as sharp in Tuesday’s loss, but both pitchers should provide a big assist to the Twins going forward.
The team is 6-4 in its last 10 games, but needs to step it up because the Cleveland Guardians are 8-2 over that same span and now trail the Twins by 2.5 games.
The Twins are off Thursday, then resume play Friday against the Arizona Diamondbacks. Devin Smeltzer gets the ball.
-The key moment in Wednesday’s win was Luis Arraez 2 RBI single in the eighth inning. He expertly worked his way to a full count, then drilled a single between second base and third to help the Twins take a 4-0 lead.
-Wednesday’s pitching win went to reliever Griffin Jax, who is now 4-0 with a 2.59 ERA.
-My father, son and I attended Monday’s game as part of a longstanding tradition to see the Twins whenever they come to Seattle. I thought the play of the game was when Arraez made a stabbing attempt at a line drive, deflected the ball into the air, and then almost caught it on the way down. Still, his run-saving block of the ball allowed him to double up a runner at first base.
-On June 15, 1980, the Twins were blown out by the Cleveland Indians 14-5. During the blowout, Twins manager Gene Mauch blew his stack after the Tribe pulled off some trickery to hurry the game along, according to the Minneapolis Tribune.
The game was twice delayed by rain. The second time was in the fourth inning, and that’s when Cleveland’s Toby Harrah decided to deliberately get picked off third base so that they could get to the fifth inning and make it a legal game.
“I kinda got caught sleeping,” said Harrah with a straight face after the game. But he couldn’t stop short of a sly wink and laugh, the newspaper reported.
Twins manager Gene Mauch had seen enough and raced out to argue with the third base umpire.
“Harrah is making a travesty of the game,” he told the paper. “He should be thrown out.”
Sources: MLB.com, Baseball-Reference.com and Newspapers.com