Twins Game Recap (7/21): Max Kepler Delivers Dramatic Walk-Off Win
Image courtesy of FanGraphsBox Score
Pineda: 5 1/3 IP, 4 H, 3 ER, 5 BB, 8 K, 58.7% strikes (64 of 109 pitches)
Bullpen: 3 2/3 IP, 3 H, 2 ER, 4 BB, 6 K
Home Runs: Kepler (24)
Multi-Hit Games: Kepler (3-for-6), Arraez (3-for-5), Adrianza (3-for-5)
Top 3 WPA: Adrianza (0.66), Kepler (0.53), Polanco (0.26)
Bottom 3 WPA: May (-0.47), Sano (-0.21), Castro (-0.20)
Another solid start for the offense
Just like yesterday, this Twins offense was off to a hot start in the first inning. It started with two straight doubles from Kepler and Polanco, followed by a one out single from Rosario but the Twins could only plate one run while making Mengden work. The offense kept rolling in the second inning when Kepler came to the plate with to men on and put MAXimum power into one for a three run bomb. Get it?
The Twins had some chances to put the game away early, especially with Mengden leaving after 3 2/3 innings, but they blew a two one one out chance in the third, the same situation in the fourth and then a bases loaded no out chance with the top of the order was squandered.
Pineda works through some struggles
As the offense couldn’t quite put a lot together, Michael Pineda was able to do enough to keep the A’s mostly in check. He struggled with his command all night and walked a season high five guys. For context, he walked just six in all of April, five in May and four in June. He came out after 5 and ⅓ innings and gave way to the bullpen…
The Twins bullpen is going to make the entire state of Minnesota implode on itself
After Pineda came out, Ryne Harper came into the game for the final two outs but it wasn’t clean. He gave up a hit to make the lead 5-3. The next pitcher was Trevor May and that did not go well. He threw 49 pitches and only 24 strikes, resulting in 3 walks, 2 hits and 2 earned runs over 1 2/3 innings. Long reliever Kohl Stewart was the only Twins reliever to have a good outing today. He went one inning, striking out two and giving up zero runs.
Since Monday, the Twins have been relatively short-handed in the bullpen with just seven guys. Taylor Rogers has thrown 41 pitches in the last three days. Parker, Littell, and Duffey all pitched the last two days, and Kohl Stewart is a starter. It seems like a trade is coming soon but fans are getting impatient quickly.
Frustrating Twins offense somehow pulls it off
The inning after the Twins gave up the lead, Polanco started the 8th with a leadoff double, followed by a groundout that was a saved hit by the shortstop, a Rosario pop up to third base and then a Sano swinging strikeout. It wasn’t looking good for Twins fans.
We all went into the bottom of the ninth inning extremely depressed and we had already moved onto football season. Luckily the Twins are really good! After a single by Arraez and a clutch RBI triple from Adrianza, Kepler came up with two out and a guy on third. He got his pitch from former Twins pitcher Liam Hendricks and lined it into left for the walkoff win!
Postgame With Baldelli
Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet
Click here for a review of the number of pitches thrown by each member of the bullpen over the past five days.
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