SP: Randy Dobnak: 7.0 IP, 6 H, 5 ER, 0 BB, 2 K (88 pitches, 53 strikes (60.2%))
Home Runs: Jorge Polanco (25), Ryan Jeffers (12)
Bottom 3 WPA: Randy Dobnak (-0.287), Josh Donaldson (-0.084), Byron Buxton (-0.067)
Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs)
Jorge Polanco gave the Twins a 1-0 lead in the first inning with his 25th home run of the season.
Polanco cut the Twins deficit to just two runs (5-3) with a two-out bloop double that scored Luis Arraez in the 8th inning.
In between, Ryan Jeffers launched his 12th homer with the Twins this season.
The Fu Manchu Returns
For the first time since June 19th, Randy Dobnak took the mound for the Twins. While it may be impossible to make a start in which one gives up five runs a good start, Dobnak did figure things out and provided the Twins with seven innings. Yes, he gave up five runs before recording the first out of the third inning. However, he retired the next 15 batters he faced. He got weak contact. He induced ground balls. He recorded 17 of his 21 outs on ground balls. He worked efficiently, and gave the bullpen a second straight day off... well, except for the eight-pitch outing from Ralph Garza.
It's hard not to wonder if things might have been different that Miguel Sano simply recorded the out at first bases on the Randy Arozarena broken-bat grounder to first. Obviously it's impossible to know, but Arozarena wouldn't have scored on Kevin Keirmeier's double that followed. Maybe that means one less run. Maybe two? Who knows, but the tone of the game sure changed at that point.
Here are some of Dobnak's postgame thoughts:
Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet