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Twins Game Recap (9/14): Sano Grand Slam Overcomes Rocky Start for Win

The second contest of Saturday's doubleheader provided another bullpen game, but that is about where the similarities ended. Things didn’t look to be going the Twins way early, but a five-run eighth inning ensured, and the Twins secured, the double-header sweep, beating Cleveland 9-5.
Image courtesy of FanGraphs
Box Score
Starter: Lewis Thorpe 3.2 IP, 7 H, 5 ER, 4 BB, 6 K, 59% strikes (49 of 83 pitches)
Bullpen: 5.1 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 6 K

Home Runs: Eddie Rosario (29), Nelson Cruz (37), Miguel Sano (28)
Multi-Hit Games: Jorge Polanco (3-for-5)

Top 3 WPA: Jorge Polanco (.256), Eddie Rosario (.243), Miguel Sano (.213)
Bottom 3 WPA: Lewis Thorpe (-.302), Max Kepler (-1.00), Luis Arraez (-.077)

Eddie Rosario started game two of the doubleheader off right as he hit his 29th home run on the season to score Jorge Polanco and put the Twins up 2-0 early. That early lead wouldn’t hold nearly as long as one had hoped.

Lewis Thorpe continued the parade of bullpen arms that passed over the mound Saturday. While game one resulted in a shutout, Thorpe wasn’t as sharp. Instead the Indians scored two runs in the first and another three in the fourth before Thorpe left the game with the Indians leading 5-2.

In the sixth inning the Twins began to chip away at the Indians' lead with a Cruz home run. It was then in the eighth inning when all of Twins Territory could exhale and then celebrate as the Twins erupted for five runs. With Sano’s first career grand slam being the biggest of exclamation points on the Twins' night and putting the Twins up 9-5.



While Sano will be the one remembered, Polanco and the relievers should not be overlooked. Polanco, along with going 3-for-5 on the night also scored three of the Twins nine runs. After the exit of Thorpe, the Twins pitchers allowed only one hit, issued no walks or runs, and struck out six Indian batters.

That puts the Twins 5.5 games up in the Central and the Indians are now in danger of missing out on the playoffs all together. I will allow your imagination to insert an earlier tweeted premature farewell tweet here...

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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55 Comments

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terrydactyls1947
Sep 14 2019 08:35 PM

Yesterday was Friday, September 13.It was the 147th and 148th games of the year putting the Twins 91% of the way through the season.The Twins hit 4 home runs for a season total of 283 home runs.The Twins are now 2 home runs behind the Yankees for the new MLB single-season home run record.

    • glunn, Jerr, Brandon and 2 others like this

The way Thorpe was throwing I was begging Rocco to get him out of the game.Once the Indians were up 5-2 I thought the game was squandered and lost.Thank goodness the bullpen held and the bats finally got hot.Sano with the big bomb was fantastic.We have two out of three in the bag do I dare hope for a sweep with all the bullpen arms used up?So happy we are up 5.5 games with teams looking to pack it in left to play.

    • glunn and SF Twins Fan like this
That road field advantage is so sweet! Great wins today and Graterol looked unhittable
    • glunn, PATwinsfan, wabene and 3 others like this
Let it SANO!!!!!
    • glunn, wabene, FlauerPauer and 1 other like this
Before the season started I was in Vegas and played a wager on the Twins to win the division. All year long I've been kicking myself, why didn't I put more on them. Then I would kick myself why did I squander that money. Back and forth all year long. What a wonderful ride.
    • glunn, Jerr, blindeke and 2 others like this
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Brock Beauchamp
Sep 14 2019 08:53 PM
18 innings of bullpen on the road against one of the better rotations in baseball.

Two wins.

Pretty much everyone called this, right?
    • Seth Stohs, glunn, birdwatcher and 21 others like this

We are 3 HRs away from having 5 players with 30 HRs on a team.That has to be a record of some kind?I know the Dodgers with 4 was a big deal once upon a time.The 87 Twins just missed that feat when Puckett only had 28 HRs.

 

    • glunn and Nine of twelve like this
Graterol! Team really rose to the occasion, a sweep tomorrow would bury Cleveland.
    • SF Twins Fan, FlauerPauer and Nine of twelve like this

Well THAT was...um....what is the word....oh yes......AWESOME!

    • Danchat, SF Twins Fan and Nine of twelve like this

That was a TEAM win. And what a win.

 

I woke up this morning to see the Twinks had the 1st game in hand, and even the Gophers had eked out a win. Left for a hike after the 1st inning, and got back just after the Sano Salami! The grizzled vets stepped up and bailed out the kid, and it was a beautiful thing to see.

 

It's quite a nice surprise that the much-maligned Twins BP has really stepped it up this month, and especially in those 2 games today, when it counted most. We got a series win, which is what we needed, and the rest of our schedule is against the Central's bottom-feeders, but this ain't over yet. Let's go out there tomorrow, boys, and bury these guys in front of their own fans.

 

There's a sweet, small indie movie called Jawbone- the tried-and-true aging-boxer-in-search-of-redemption tale. The anti-hero goes into the intimidating atmosphere of the undefeated stud's gym, in front of his family, friends, and rabid supporters. His calm-demeanored corner man tells him, "Look over there. He's a bully. And he's surrounded by bullies. When that bell rings, I want you to walk across that ring, and break his heart."

 

That's what I want. I wanna break their hearts tomorrow.

 

Does that make me a bad person? 

;-)

 

*Edit time:I see we're also tied for the season series, soooo......

    • scottz, brvama, Dantes929 and 1 other like this

 

 

Graterol! Team really rose to the occasion, a sweep tomorrow would bury Cleveland.

Oh I think they are already buried,..but I'm all for shoveling another load of dirt on them tomorrow for good measure!

    • gunnarthor, Danchat, wabene and 2 others like this

 

We are 3 HRs away from having 5 players with 30 HRs on a team.That has to be a record of some kind?I know the Dodgers with 4 was a big deal once upon a time.The 87 Twins just missed that feat when Puckett only had 28 HRs.

 

That would be a record, 12 teams have had four 30 home run hitters.

1977 Dodgers

1995 Rockies

1996 Rockies

1997 Rockies

1997 Dodgers

1998 Braves

1999 Rockies

2000 Angels

2000 Blue Jays

2004 Cubs

2006 White Sox

2009 Phillies

 

Twins have 3 down and 2 close, Dodgers have 3 down and 1 close, Red Sox and Astros both have 2 down and 2 close.  

 

Oh I think they are already buried,..but I'm all for shoveling another load of dirt on them tomorrow for good measure!

Yup, a 5.5 game lead is more than enough, IMO. Sweeping this doubleheader solidified it. Just think about it, if things went wrong today, we'd have just a 1.5 game lead. 

 

Just fantastic baseball, boys. Rosario, Cruz, and Sano were all in the midst of slumps and came through, and every single pitcher except Thorpe did their jobs today. Well played, everyone!

 

What did I say about playing games on the road? It just seems to cure this team's woes. They are 26 games above .500 on the road and just 8 above in home games.

    • glunn, Jerr, blindeke and 4 others like this
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stringer bell
Sep 14 2019 09:30 PM

While nothing is clinched, I will now feel much better if Cron and Kepler aren't in the lineup tomorrow or for the next series. I do hope that Cave and Gonzalez make appearances soon, which could keep lineups on a par with what they were today.

 

Cruz left early, more wrist discomfort?

    • glunn and wabene like this

This was a really fun day.

    • glunn and Sconnie like this

Can we call out everyone at the FAN for giving up on the Twins too? Power Trip, Common, and Barreiro all buried the Twins on Friday, declared this series the beginning of the end for the club, blah blah blah. That made the doubleheader sweep even sweeter, I gotta say.

 

I love the depth and resilience of this club.

 

Bullpen has really been stepping up, and its great to see. 

    • birdwatcher, Sconnie, railmarshalljon and 1 other like this
Worried about a 1.5 game lead, and Twins end day with a 5.5 game lead, instead. Fun day to be Twins fan, to say the least!
    • ashbury, birdwatcher, Jerr and 3 others like this
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Brock Beauchamp
Sep 14 2019 09:46 PM

 

Graterol! Team really rose to the occasion, a sweep tomorrow would bury Cleveland.

Two wins today virtually buried Cleveland. Maybe they'll show up with fire tomorrow, maybe they'll lay down dead.

 

Either way, it probably doesn't matter much. They were just gut-punched in a pretty serious way. They had ALL the advantage going into this series but just lost a double-header against a crippled team throwing 18 innings of bullpen at them.

    • ashbury, glunn, denarded and 5 others like this
Would be nice to rest some guys!

C- Castro
1B- Astudillo
2B- Schoop
3B- Sano
SS- Torreyes
LF- Rosario
CF- LaMarre/Miller
RF- Miller/LaMarre
DH- whoever wants the ABs. Not Cron.
    • David HK likes this
Hats off all around, but the bullpen deserves the lions share of the credit. Fantastic job.
    • glunn, Blake, Jerr and 8 others like this
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Brock Beauchamp
Sep 14 2019 09:57 PM

 

Would be nice to rest some guys!

C- Castro
1B- Astudillo
2B- Schoop
3B- Sano
SS- Torreyes
LF- Rosario
CF- LaMarre/Miller
RF- Miller/LaMarre
DH- whoever wants the ABs. Not Cron.

That's what Monday is for. Put the fork in Cleveland and then rest people. There are literally two weeks left in the season and you have one game remaining against the only competitor for the division, a game you can put them 6.5 back and basically coast the rest of the way.

 

Win tomorrow, then you can rest everyone off and on for two weeks.

 

If the Twins win tomorrow, they can basically play like Detroit from here on out and still win the ALC.

    • glunn, Jerr, Sconnie and 6 others like this

Don't worry about rest now, put the dagger in.Most of these guy have had plenty of rest the last few days.I can see keeping Kepler out and maybe Cruz, but let's bury Cleveland.

    • glunn, Jerr, IndianaTwin and 4 others like this
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IndianaTwin
Sep 14 2019 10:19 PM
What is the team total for home runs after the doubleheader sweep today?
Worried about Kepler. Last swing, actually last 2 swings, were painful to watch. We need a healthy Kep!
    • USAFChief, blindeke, SF Twins Fan and 1 other like this

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