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8/30 GAME NOTES: Berrios Buries White Sox with 11 Strikeouts, Pair of Rosario Bombs in 11-1 Win

Posted by Brandon Warne , 31 August 2017 · 1,064 views

minnesota twins chicago white sox jose berrios eddie rosario
Please go to Zone Coverage here to read this story in full.

The Minnesota Twins came into Wednesday night with a 68-63 record. It might not mean much, but the 1987 Twins also headed into Aug. 30 with an identical record, en route to the first World Series in the franchise’s post-Washington D.C. tenure.

That 1987 team also caught fire late in the season, including perhaps most notably going 16-11 in September. In an era where only two teams from each league made the postseason, that 85-win club did the unthinkable — not only sneaking into the postseason but upsetting the heavily-favored Tigers.

Until the 83-win St. Louis Cardinals won the 2006 World Series, the ‘87 Twins stood as the team with the worst regular-season record to win it all.

Might 85 wins be enough to make the postseason again this year? Most of the projections seem to think so, albeit as a first or second Wild Card. Nevertheless, the parallels don’t stop there.

“They’re so hot here, it’s unbelievable,” said Seattle Mariners first baseman Alvin Davis in a pregame interview at the Metrodome on Aug. 16, 1987. “I can’t believe the difference between the team we played in Seattle and the team we’re playing here. Last night in the first inning, they looked like sharks — they really did — in a pool of blood.”

“They’re like sharks in a feeding frenzy!” said Mariners color commentator Rick Rizzs as Kent Hrbek launched a mammoth home run into the upper deck in center field at the Metrodome against Mariners reliever Scott Bankhead.

The Twins scored 14 runs in that drubbing, including eight in the first inning — the one referred to by Davis in his quote — off starter Lee Guetterman and reliever Mike Brown as well as three more off Bankhead in the second.

The Twins finished off a four-game sweep of the Mariners, and were on their way to the postseason.

Similarly, this Twins offense has been red-hot, and is showing no signs of stopping after an 11-1 win over the Chicago White Sox at Target Field on Wednesday night. Jose Berrios followed Ervin Santana’s magic show Tuesday night with one of his own, and it looks like Nos. 1 and 2 in the Twins rotation are catching fire when the team needs them most.

“It was a really good game,” manager Paul Molitor said. “I think Jose had one of his better games. He’s thrown some impressive ones along the way, but when you think about command and being able to put guys away with strikeouts. I think he got stronger, and didn’t want to come out of the game after seven. But after the long inning and the score getting spread out, we went ahead and got him out.”

The Twins showed little regard for White Sox starter Derek Holland, who less than a week ago had stymied them for just one earned run on three hits over six innings. That had been Holland’s first good start in quite some time, as he’d posted ERA marks in excess of 9.00 in each of the last three months coming into Wednesday’s start.