June 10, 2024

Twins blast Bucs with 7-run 10th, halt losing streak

The losing streak is over and now a new streak, the winning kind, is potentially at hand because the Twins head home to play three games against the lowly Colorado Rockies, followed by four more versus the somewhat improved Oakland A’s.

At any rate, the five-game losing streak is over after the Twins pounced for seven runs in the 10th inning to blowout the Pittsburgh Pirates 11-5 on Sunday and salvage one game from the series.

The Twins banged out 13 hits; Carlos Correa, Max Kepler, Manuel Margot and Ryan Jeffers accounted for nine of them.

Chris Paddack gets the ball Monday.

Extra innings…

-The streaky Twins have had a 12-game winning streak, a seven-game losing streak, a four-game winning streak and the just completed five-game losing skid. What’s next for this team?

-The series against the Bucs was quite literally painful, especially on Sunday, because three Twins were hit by four pitches. Willi Castro was hit twice (and he was not happy about it), Byron Buxton got hit in the back and Kyle Farmer was plunked, too.

-On June 9, 1926, Roy Smalley, Sr., came into this world and later became a ballplayer for the Chicago Cubs. He wasn’t as good as his son, who spent 10 of his 13 major league seasons with the Twins, but old man Smalley did hit for the cycle in a 15-3 rout of the Cardinals on June 28, 1950. That’s right: he singled, doubled, tripled, homered, scored two runs and drove in four more.

Chicago Tribune

“By way of proving that they were more than a little annoyed about being spanked twice by the Cardinals on Tuesday, the Cubs threw the book at the Gas House Gang yesterday to a tuneful 15 to 3 victory, thoroughly relished by 12,109 cash customers and 12,953 guests in Wrigley field.”

St. Louis Globe-Democrat*

“Just one day after winning a double-header from Chicago, the Cardinals absorbed their most one-sided shellacking of the season here this afternoon when the Cubs walloped them 15 to 3.”

How about the younger Smalley? Did he ever hit for the cycle? No, but he came close in a 10-7 win over the Oakland A’s on May 28, 1979. On that date, Smalley singled, doubled and homered.

Incredibly, the Minneapolis Tribune did not lead with Smalley’s exploits, but focused on two singles hit by John Castino. Smalley was reduced to a brief mention about getting a force out at third base. Huh?

The Oakland Tribune saw it much differently.

“There was a time when you could walk around the Minnesota Twins’ clubhouse and hear the thinly veiled slurs of nepotism against Roy Smalley.

“Yeah, the nephew screwed up today” or “The nephew managed a hit for a change.”

“No more and Roy Frederick Smalley III, nephew of Twins Manager Gene Mauch, showed why yesterday with a home run, double, single and four RBI in Minnesota’s 10-7 plastering of the Oakland A’s at Metropolitan Stadium.”

Kudos to the Oakland Tribune.

Smalley was an All-Star in 1979 and also received some MVP votes. He slashed .271/.353/.441 with 24 home runs, 95 RBI and 80 walks in a league-leading 729 plate appearances and played in 162 games.

*The newspaper that launched the career of conservative commentator Patrick Buchanan. Not an endorsement, just a fact.

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

COMMENTS

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.