Ober: 4.1 IP 6 H 4 R 4 ER 2 BB 2 SO
Home Runs: Jeffers (5), Kepler (6), Larnach (5)
Bottom 3 WPA: Robles -.456, Ober -.273, Colome -.117
Win Probability Chart (via Fangraphs)
Seeking a two-game sweep of Cincinnati and looking to extend their season-high winning streak to six, the Twins sent promising starter Bailey Ober to the mound Tuesday to face Reds lefty Wade Miley. Gilberto Celestino was recalled from St. Paul to take the place of Byron Buxton, now returning to the IL after fracturing his hand in Monday’s marathon game.
Ober continued his strong start, working efficiently in the first inning. He worked around a one out walk to retire the Reds on 19 pitches, including an up-in-the-zone fastball strikeout which has been important in his early success. Tuesday also offered a look at Alex Kirilloff at first base, which quickly yielded impressive results.
Despite surrendering the lead on a solo home run to Tucker Barnhart in the 3rd inning, Ober was again strong early with his combination of quick work, sharp breaking ball, strong command, and high fastball continuing to be effective. He was aided by some excellent defense from newly-recalled Gilberto Celestino.
The Twins took the lead in the fourth inning. Iron man Ryan Jeffers, who caught 12 innings last night and returned to start today’s matinee, crushed a home run to left field, giving Minnesota a 2-1 lead.
A Jesse Winker double allowed the Reds to retake the lead in the fifth inning after Ober loaded the bases with no outs. Tyler Duffey relieved Ober with men on 2nd and 3rd and one out. Duffey struck out Tyler Stephenson, before walking Tyler Naquin to load the bases and bring up Eugenio Suarez. Suarez singled to left, scoring a run before Winker was thrown out comfortably at home by Trevor Larnach. The Twins hit in the fifth inning trailing 4-2.
The 4-2 score held until the eighth inning. Alexander Colomé entered in relief for the Twins. Bad things immediately happened. Colomé immediately gave up a single to Tyler Naquin and walked Eugenio Suarez. Kyle Farmer reached second base after an error by Miguel Sanó. A Tucker Barnhart single, which looked like it shouldn’t have made its way through the infield, scored two more runs, stretching the Reds lead to 7-2 and perhaps extinguishing any hopes of a Twins comeback. Colomé induced a double play to end the inning, leaving the Twins with a five-run deficit.
Max Kepler trimmed the lead to 7-4 after a two run shot in the bottom of the eighth.
Trevor Larnach followed up Kepler’s home run with a 112 mph, 434 foot blast of his own, his fifth of the season, cutting the lead to 7-5.
After a Ryan Jeffers single, Miguel Sanó hit a 112.2 mph laser to left field which clipped the top of the padding on the outfield wall. It was ruled a double, and Kirilloff up with a chance to tie the game. Kirilloff came through, crushing the first pitch from Teejay Antone to right center field to score two runners and tie the game at seven.
After crushing the Reds bullpen, the Twins brought in Hansel Robles in the ninth inning. He gave up a double, hit a batter then surrendered a three-run home run to Tyler Naquin to put the Reds up 10-7 and surely put the game beyond the Twins reach, for the second time. Amir Garrett closed out the game for the Reds, snapping the Twins win streak at five.
Bullpen Usage Chart
After an off day Wednesday, the Twins will send José Berríos to the mound to face Cleveland. The Cleveland starter has not yet been announced. First pitch is at 7:10 CST.