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  • Game Score: Twins 7, Blue Jays 2


    Matthew Taylor

    Nick Gordon posted the best game of his young Major League career as the Minnesota Twins scored seven runs to beat the playoff-hopeful Toronto Blue Jays.

    Image courtesy of Jordan Johnson, USA TODAY Sports

    Box Score
    Pineda: 5 IP, 8 H, 2 ER, 1 BB, 2 K
    Home runs: Gordon (4)
    Top 3 WPA: Garver .245, Gordon .202, Buxton .180

    Win Probability Chart (Via FanGraphs)

    VQ8GkQlajl1i8ON5MWQyDaaqCIP3CrwfvkGC8UU9vaa6JlSzeJ-_oFPa2W8J180kq1NmiF4EudY-LHwb8QWz4bONc_Rk_nX-tU-snJ5cijsnurm31X9cbpkx2nHBXZvTRw5gJxno=s0

    The Minnesota Twins leaned on Michael Pineda on the mound tonight in what could be one of his final starts as a member of the organization. Big Mike provided a steady start for the Twins, tossing five innings, allowing just eight hits and two runs and striking out two.

    The first run the Blue Jays scored was right away in the top of the second inning when Lourdes Gurriel knocked an RBI double.

    The Twins quickly rebounded in the third inning, though, when they got a leadoff double from Byron Buxton followed by an RBI single from Jorge Polanco and later an RBI single from Mitch Garver.

    The Blue Jays quickly rebounded in the fourth inning when Teoscar Hernandez hit a solo home run off of Pineda to tie the game, his 30th home run of the season.

    After that, though, it was all Minnesota the rest of the way, highlighted by the bat of red-hot Nick Gordon who smashed a three-run home run in the bottom of the fifth inning and an RBI single in the seventh. The home run was Gordon’s fourth on the season, and his four-RBI game marks a career high for the long-time Twins prospect. Nick Gordon’s batting average is now up to .263 on the season with a respectable OPS of .711. Gordon continues to make a case for a roster spot on the 2022 team.

    The Twins’ bullpen was nails in relief of Michael Pineda as they received four scoreless innings from a combination of Nick Vincent, Caleb Thielbar, Luke Farrell and Ralph Garza, Jr.

    In the end, the Twins took the game 7-2 and won their third straight game to move their record to 68-85 on the season.

    Postgame Interviews

    What’s Next

    The Minnesota Twins will continue their four-game home series against the Blue Jays on Friday night, sending Bailey Ober to the mound to face off against former Twins’ ace, José Berríos.

    Bullpen Usage Chart

      SAT SUN TUE WED THU TOT
    Barraclough 32 0 35 0 0 67
    Vincent 0 40 0 0 13 53
    Thielbar 0 22 16 0 14 52
    Minaya 0 36 0 13 0 49
    Moran 34 0 0 0 0 34
    Farrell 0 34 0 0 19 53
    Duffey 0 0 11 12 0 23
    Alcalá 0 0 10 10 0 20
    Colomé 0 0 7 24 0 31
    Garza Jr. 17 0 0 0 16 33
    Coulombe 0 0 17 0 0 17
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    Great to see Nick Gordon's continued strong bat.  He's making a strong case to be a big piece of this team next year.

    Not going to complain about a Twins win, but saying that it wouldn't break my heart to see Jays rebound to win at least 2 in this series while the Red Sox beat the feathers out of the Yankees.

    In this train wreck of a season, I would take a lot of personal satisfaction see the Yanks sitting at home when the playoffs start.

     

     

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    Finally letting Gordon show what he can do. Baldelli seems hell-bent on ruining his career.  All the times they called him up just to let him sit on bench or get low level at bats.  Great job Nick.  

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    3 minutes ago, Whitey333 said:

    Finally letting Gordon show what he can do. Baldelli seems hell-bent on ruining his career.  All the times they called him up just to let him sit on bench or get low level at bats.  Great job Nick.  

    Look, if you have a problem with Baldelli, fine, but this comment is pretty silly.  Gordon has played 65 games in MLB this year and if anything Baldelli and company have tried to put him in positions to succeed and have a career in MLB, and kept giving him opportunities even when his performance at the plate warranted being sent back down to the minors. (please note that he was dreadful at the plate in July and August). If that's ruining his career, we should all be so lucky.

    It's great that he's playing well in Sept, but he still strikes out a lot, and can't hit lefties so let's calm down a little on Nick Gordon.

     

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    I know some want to write Gordon off as a miss.  However, if you look at the history of him moving up the ladder, he normally would have rough starts at each level and then after a bit of time he would increase his output.  I wish he would have been given a lot more playing time this year to have a much better idea of what he have moving forward. 

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    Yesterday was a really good story all around.  I do want the Blue Jays to get into the playoffs instead of the Yankees, but I will take this.  I am more and more convinced that Pineda will be back.  He takes time off every year, but when he is on the mound we get good quality.  Pineda, Ryan and Ober give us a start on next years rotation.  

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    1 hour ago, jmlease1 said:

    Gordon has played 65 games in MLB this year and if anything Baldelli and company have tried to put him in positions to succeed and have a career in MLB, and kept giving him opportunities even when his performance at the plate warranted being sent back down to the minors. (please note that he was dreadful at the plate in July and August). If that's ruining his career, we should all be so lucky.

    It's great that he's playing well in Sept, but he still strikes out a lot, and can't hit lefties so let's calm down a little on Nick Gordon.

    I think you're probably right about Baldelli here, though I would have loved to see Gordon get more chances at SS. He seems to have surprised the team with his promotion, grit and play this year - he may have a few surprises left.

    But you're wrong about calming down. :) Twins fans watched our young talent (Gil, Ynoa, Baddoo, Wade) bloom elsewhere in 2021 - we needed a young hero here, and Gordon's doing what he can to deliver.

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    23 minutes ago, Trov said:

    I know some want to write Gordon off as a miss.  However, if you look at the history of him moving up the ladder, he normally would have rough starts at each level and then after a bit of time he would increase his output.  I wish he would have been given a lot more playing time this year to have a much better idea of what he have moving forward. 

    I'm not writing him off, but we should temper expectations, and I object to the idea that Gordon has somehow been screwed over or obviously should have gotten a bunch more playing time. This is a player who had a truncated 2019 season due to injury and basically did nothing in 2020 as well other than rehab. He needed some time in AAA this year. He was awful in July & August and they still let him play through it. I get that people want him as the full-time SS for some reason, but I really doubt that's in his best interests, since there's no chance he's the opening day SS next year (or any year).

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    3 hours ago, jmlease1 said:

    I'm not writing him off, but we should temper expectations, and I object to the idea that Gordon has somehow been screwed over or obviously should have gotten a bunch more playing time. This is a player who had a truncated 2019 season due to injury and basically did nothing in 2020 as well other than rehab. He needed some time in AAA this year. He was awful in July & August and they still let him play through it. I get that people want him as the full-time SS for some reason, but I really doubt that's in his best interests, since there's no chance he's the opening day SS next year (or any year).

    You actually are hitting part of my point right on the head.  You point out he did terrible for a couple of months, which in his history of moving up levels he would do horrible at each level for a couple of months.  Everyone would say well he is struggling and clearly a bust, only to bounce back and have success at the level and people think he may just make it.  That is his trend to struggle at each new level.  

    I am not advocating for being SS, or even that he should play every day or anything.  I am pointing out that every level he played at he started slow and took a couple months to start turning it around.  I just wish in a lost season he got more playing time earlier and not bouncing back and forth so much to see what kind of value he may have going forward.  I am not ready to write him off just yet. 

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    1 hour ago, Trov said:

    You actually are hitting part of my point right on the head.  You point out he did terrible for a couple of months, which in his history of moving up levels he would do horrible at each level for a couple of months.  Everyone would say well he is struggling and clearly a bust, only to bounce back and have success at the level and people think he may just make it.  That is his trend to struggle at each new level.  

    I am not advocating for being SS, or even that he should play every day or anything.  I am pointing out that every level he played at he started slow and took a couple months to start turning it around.  I just wish in a lost season he got more playing time earlier and not bouncing back and forth so much to see what kind of value he may have going forward.  I am not ready to write him off just yet. 

    He was called up for good at the start of June, game 55. While things were looking pretty bad already, we were still only about 1/3 of the way through the season and I don't think most people were ready to write off the season yet. Would it have been fair to give him another 50 ABs in May when the team still had a chance to rebound? He played 18 games in AAA this season, it's not like he got buried there...and before that hadn't played in a game in almost 2 years.

    There seems to be this belief among many Twins fans that Nick Gordon has been treated unfairly or something, or that his performance demands that he be given a bigger role, and I don't quite understand it. 

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    15 hours ago, stringer bell said:

    Still not a fan of his defense.

    He has improved considerably, and no reason to think he has reached the limit of what he can learn. 
    He's also tough as nails.  Not many guys would go back for more of the punishment he has received.

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