July 26, 2023

Winning streak comes to an end as whiffs galore, bullpen sink Twins

The Twins’ four-game winning streak came to an end Tuesday as the offense went cold and the bullpen underwhelmed to hand the Seattle Mariners a 9-7 win.

And although Michael A. Taylor hit a home run in the bottom of the ninth to make it interesting, there was no walk-off magic after back-to-back games of it.

The Twins scored four runs right out of the gates, but couldn’t sustain that run production because the team struck out 18 times. The youth movement had an especially bad game as Alex Kirilloff, Matt Wallner and Trevor Larnach accounted for half of those strikeouts.

Making matters worse, the bullpen had an off night. Starter Pablo Lopez allowed two runs over seven innings with eight strikeouts, then Jovani Moran, Emilio Pagan and Oliver Ortega coughed up seven runs in the eighth and ninth innings.

The Twins still have a chance to win the series on Wednesday. Joe Ryan gets the ball.

Extra innings …

-The Twins are now 54-49 and lead the Cleveland Guardians by three games after the Guards picked up a game on them by beating the Royals, 5-1.

-The back-to-back walk-off wins: The 5-4 win over the White Sox on Sunday and the 4-3 win over the M’s on Monday.

-On July 26, 1967, the Twins split a doubleheader against the New York Yankees, winning the second game 3-2 in 18 innings. Rod Carew scored the winning run with a walk, a steal of second base, then advanced to third base on an errant throw from the catcher. Rich Rollins finally singled him home.

The New York Daily News lede for the doubleheader:

“The Yankees played 27 innings of baseball at the Stadium last night and managed to lose only one ballgame, an 18-inning late show nightcap won by the Twins, 3-2, in the longest game ever played by a Minny team.”

The Minneapolis Tribune lede:

“The fifth-place Twins needed their longest game in Minnesota history to break a seven-game losing streak with a 3-2 victory over the New York Yankees in the second game Wednesday night.”

Sources: MLB.com, Baseball-Reference.com, Newspapers.com


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.