July 5, 2024

Twins beat up on an old friend, win big 12-3

Pitcher Kenta Maeda, who spent three seasons with the Twins, took the mound on Thursday for the Detroit Tigers and wasn’t around for long after Minnesota scored nine runs on nine hits en route to a 12-3 win that was shortened by rain in the seventh inning.

The win gave the Twins a series win over the Detroit Tigers, their fourth straight, and now they await the Houston Astros who will be here for three games over the weekend.

The Twins banged out 14 hits and most of them came from three players: Jose Miranda, Ryan Jeffers and Max Kepler. Miranda was the big dog, collecting five hits in five trips to the plate with four runs scored and three RBI. Jeffers hit his team-leading 14th home run.

On the mound, Bailey Ober improved to 8-4 with a 4.12 ERA after allowing only one earned run across six innings with eight strikeouts. Reliever Cole Sands followed him and struck out the side in the seventh on 14 pitches.

Pablo Lopez gets the ball Friday.

Extra innings…

-Miranda’s 5-for-5 day included three doubles.

-There was a time when the Twins struggled to hit with runners in scoring position. That was not the case on Thursday after they hit .500 or 9-for-18 with RISP.

-The Tigers’ Maeda had a tough afternoon. He lasted all of three-plus innings, tossing 88 pitches over that span with three walks.

-And now for something completely different…

Public transportation is a necessary, convenient and timely endeavor being played out on a daily basis in communities across the country, including in the Twin Cities, home to Metro Transit. My son and I, who are again here for the week to see some Twins games, have ridden the local light rail and buses and we have had no problem getting around the area at a relatively reasonable cost. It’s a good transit system.

But the one thing that mass transit in this country cannot guarantee is safety, and I can tell that Metro Transit has had some challenges in this area, based on the number of police on board the trains, plus the fare checkers we encountered, which were new to us this year, and the regular reminders about checking your personal property and that video cameras are recording images.

I write this because of what we witnessed Sunday morning as we rode the Green Line train to U.S. Bank Stadium, then transferred to the Blue Line train to go to the Mall of America on a rainy July 4.

During our short trip, a woman suddenly appeared who was clearly high on something or in the throes of a mental health episode as she stood and danced and twirled and gesticulated, holding her head in her hands at times, while also sticking out her tongue. Spilling out of her bra and barefoot, she talked and sang to herself, and sometimes her “routine” seemed to come across as a mock strip tease. It never felt threatening or unsafe, but it was awkward and uncomfortable for those of us near her, all of whom sat in stunned silence.

When we finally disembarked, three police officers were headed in our direction. I wasn’t sure if they had been called to the scene. If not, they were about to witness firsthand what we did. Lastly, I had some explaining to do to my 12-year-old son, who, like me, didn’t know if he should watch or look away.

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.