It was back to business for pitcher Joe Ryan and the Twins, the team finally beating the Cleveland Guardians for the first time in eight games on Sunday.
Ryan, who appeared no worse for wear after he missed out on a near no-hitter during his last start, fired seven-plus innings of shutout baseball and Luis Arraez (who else?) delivered a key hit in the 3-0 win.
Sonny Gray gets the ball Monday in the final game against the Guardians this season. Good riddance.
-Ryan is now 12-8 with a 3.61 ERA on the season.
-The Twins are back to .500 at 73-73, six games behind the Guardians in the American League Central. The Chicago White Sox also won 11-5 over the Detroit Tigers and are now only 3.5 games back of the Guards.
-Houston Astros pitcher Framber Valdez, the man who lulled the Twins to sleep during 2020 postseason play, made his 25th consecutive quality start on Sunday to set a new major league record. The record was previously held by New York Mets pitcher Jacob deGrom. DeGrom was none too shabby himself on Sunday, striking out 13 Pittsburgh Pirates in five innings.
-The Twins’ Arraez remains one point ahead of Boston’s Xander Bogaerts in the American League batting race. Arraez is hitting .317 to Bogaerts’ .316.
-Arraez and Carlos Correa on Sunday had five of the Twins’ 10 hits.
-The Twins turned three double plays in the Sunday win.
-Twins rookie Matt Wallner had two hits.
-If the Twins were somehow to tie the Guardians by the end of the season, the Twins would still lose out because a 163rd game is no longer played. Instead, a tie breaker, based on which team won the season series, determines who advances to the postseason. And the Guardians have already done that.
-Twins center fielder Gilberto Celestino made a nice catch on Sunday and radio play-by-play man and ex-Twin Dan Gladden, who I often think needs to show a little more enthusiasm, seemed refreshingly excited by Celestino’s catch.