August 8, 2022

About what I expected: Twins split 4-game series with Blue Jays

At least the Twins went a long way in erasing the memory of Thursday’s terrible 9-3 loss to the Toronto Blue Jays. They won on Friday and Saturday and then dropped a close one Sunday, losing 3-2 on a controversial call at home plate.

In the top of the 10th inning, Twins left fielder Tim Beckham threw out the Jays’ Whit Merrifield at home plate. But the Blue Jays challenged the out call at home and it was overturned in New York because Twins catcher Gary Sanchez allegedly blocked the base path to get the out. The counter argument, of course, is: Where else was Sanchez supposed to be? He fielded the ball at the plate where it was thrown, he made the out and it was overturned. Twins manager Rocco Baldelli, perhaps the angriest I’ve ever seen him, vehemently opposed the overturned call and was ejected from the game.

The Twins are now 57-51, but still lead the Cleveland Guardians by one game in the AL Central. They are off on Monday, then play two at Los Angeles against the red-hot Dodgers. Joe Ryan gets the ball Tuesday.

Extra innings…

-After Thursday’s 9-3 loss, the Twins designated for assignment or release reliever Tyler Duffey, who labored mightily to get five outs in the game. He tossed 44 pitches and allowed three runs on four hits, which included a home run. He finally exited with an ERA of 4.91. Duffey spent eight seasons with the Twins. He was inconsistent this season, but showed much better form in 2019 when he went 5-1 with a 2.50 ERA and struck out 82 batters in 57-plus innings pitched.

-Star Tribune columnist Chip Scoggins also points out that we may have seen the last of slugger Miguel Sano in a Twins uniform. Sano’s contract runs through 2022, but he’s also back on the 60-day injured list. The Twins can retain him on a $14 million option, but at that cost they are unlikely to do so, which would then make Sano a free agent. I don’t think he will be missed because the future at first base appears to be Jose Miranda, the former minor league player of the year who is playing more like a veteran than a rookie. Sano slugged 162 home runs over eight seasons, but he also was prone to injury, never hit for a very high average and has struck out more than 1,000 times.

-On Aug. 8, 1961, Twins pitcher Camilo Pascual, despite giving up an inside-the-park grand slam and a solo home run, drove in three runs of his own for a 6-5 win over the Boston Red Sox at Fenway Park.

Pascual singled, doubled and struck out 10 in nine innings to snap a Twins’ eight-game losing streak — a streak that included four walk-off losses.

“A new lineup and Camilo Pascual’s new-found batting skill combined to give Minnesota a 6-5 baseball victory over Boston Tuesday night and thereby snap the string of eight straight setbacks,” the Morning Minneapolis Tribune reported.

In 1961, Pascual went 15-16 with a 3.46 ERA, but he also pitched eight shutouts and struck out 221 batters.

-Slugger Harmon Killebrew had a monster year in 1961. He slashed .288/.405/.606 with 46 home runs and 122 RBI. He struck out 109 times, but he also earned 107 free passes to first base.

-And then there was this…


-And this…

Sources:,, Star Tribune,


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.