Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs)
The first inning of the game was all pitching for both sides. Sonny Gray, making his third start of the second half, only allowed one walk and retired Teoscar Hernandez on a 5-3 groundout that had its ruling overturned as a single. All-star Alek Manoah was on the mound for the Jays and retired the minimum with the Twins lineup getting Luis Arraez and Carlos Correa on flyouts and striking out Byron Buxton.
The people who came to Target Field Thursday night for a concert would be in for a treat of a pitcher's duel. Manoah’s streak of dominance would last through the next two innings as he continued to retire the minimum in the second and third against the Twins. Gray would only allow a walk to Matt Chapman in those same innings.
The perfect game bid remained for Manoah into the fourth but with one out, Correa hit a line drive single back to the mound. The deflection off Manoah’s glove hit him so quickly that he couldn’t recover the ball in time as Correa reached first base.
After getting Buxton out on a groundout, Manoah walked Jorge Polanco and Nick Gordon to get the bases loaded for Jose Miranda. Miranda worked a 2-2 count in his favor and received the nasty end of a Manoah fast ball that drilled him in his left arm. Miranda remained in the game following the hit by pitch which also scored Correa to give the Twins a 1-0 lead.
The Twins didn’t capitalize to score more runs with the bases loaded and walked back to the dugout with the first lead of the game.
This brought George Springer up to the plate with runners on first and second. Gray and Springer dueled to get a full count with Springer winning the battle to get the bases loaded for Vladimir Guerrero Jr. Gray worked Guerrero Jr. to a 2-2 count and eventually got him out on a ground out to Correa at short to keep the Twins in front 1-0.
The Twins got a runner on in the bottom of the fifth with a Gary Sanchez one out walk but Arraez and Correa came up short trying to get him home to add to their lead.
Gray was done for the evening following the fifth as he had thrown 96 pitches with only 50 hitting the strike zone. This brought in Emilio Pagan for the sixth. With one out in the inning, Pagan gave up a home run to Teoscar Hernandez that landed in the second deck of left field to tie the game 1-1.
Bo Bichette followed with a double to put the lead run into scoring position for Guerriel Jr. He was able to get Bichette in on an RBI single putting the Jays up 2-1. The Twins looked to be out of the jam as Whit Merrifield hit a ball to Miranda. Miranda’s throw to first was scooped by Arraez but fell out of his glove, scoring another run to make it 3-1 Blue Jays.
Pagan eventually got out of the jam but the damage was done as the Blue Jays now led 3-1 over the Twins going into the bottom of the sixth.
Buxton led the inning off with a strikeout but Polanco drew a walk to follow and Gordon advanced both himself and Polanco with a double to right-center field to give the Twins with two runners in scoring position for Miranda.
Miranda, looking to shake off the pain inflicted from a Manoah pitch earlier in the game, hit two foul balls off Manoah. The second went right into the hands of Dick Bremer as Miranda fouled it into the Twins broadcast booth. Following that, Miranda got an RBI fielder's choice to get the Twins back within a run.
The Twins were down 3-2 going into the seventh with Trevor Megill on the mound. Megill pitched well in the seventh as he only allowed one base runner on a Guerrero Jr. double.
Coming up short once again in the seventh, the Blue Jays took advantage of a cold Twins lineup for their turn in the eighth. The Jays added six more runs on six hits and a walk, including a three-run home run from Guerrero Jr. to give Toronto a 9-2 lead.
After a bumbling eighth, Duffey remained on the mound for the Twins ninth already having thrown 25 pitches. Duffey avoided any further runs being surrendered to the Jays. The Twins did not go down quietly in the ninth as Jake Cave hit his first home run since returning to the Twins clubhouse earlier in the week.
Cave’s home run would not be enough to start a rally as the Jays would shut down the Twins after Cave’s home run.
The Twins will play their second of four games against the Blue Jays Friday night with Tyler Mahle expected to make his debut with the team following his trade. Former Twin Jose Berrios is scheduled to make the start for the Blue Jays. First pitch is scheduled for 7:10 p.m. CT
Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet