SP: Dylan Bundy: 5 IP, 2 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 1 K (65 pitches, 4 strikes (70%))
Home Runs: Carlos Correa (13)
Top 3 WPA: Dylan Bundy (.293), Emilio Pagan (.115), Caleb Thielbar (.110)
Win Probability Chart (via FanGraphs)
The Twins continue to lag early games, unable to manufacture more than a few runs, and struggled when players are on base. Luis Arraez and Gary Sanchez got things going in the top of the second and the third innings, only to be left stranded when batters couldn’t drive them home, which caught up with the Twins in the latter part of the game.
Carlos Correa, who has not been hot through July and August certainly made up for a slow month driving in two of the three runs, against the Angels. After Reid Detmers had struck out lead-off Byron Buxton, Correa came up to bat and hit a home run to center field to get the Twins their first run of the game. In the fifth inning, Max Kepler, who didn’t get a hit in the game, was walked in the fifth, but thanks to a sac-fly from Correa, Kepler was the second run of the game.
The Twins managed to get one more run on the board in the eighth, when Jorge Polanco, Luis Arraez and Gio Urshela joined forces to manufacture three singles, each one moving Polanco closer to home for the third run.
Dylan Bundy faced his former team tonight and had a beautiful game. Remaining scoreless through five innings, he threw one of the best games we have seen from him all season. No drama, no mess, just a very well-pitched game before handing the game over to Caleb Thielbar only for the purpose of the lefty-lefty matchup with Shohei Ohtani.
Thielbar and the bullpen did a great job keeping Ohtani and the Angels off the board, until the end of the eighth inning when Ohtani homered off of Jhoan Duran to give the Angels their first run.
Buxton started in center field. It was his first back-to-back games in center field since June 8th and 9th. The management, much to the annoyance of Twins fans, have structured his game appearances to allow him to recover, a tactic that clearly is working and his defense is a prime example of why those days off are working.
In the blink of an eye, the Angels came alive and rallied back in the ninth inning. Jorge Lopez had the Angels on the ropes as the inning came to a close with a 2-1 count on Magneuris Sierra. With two on base, Sierra swung at the 94 mph sinker and hit a triple, just out of the dive of Nick Gordon, scoring Jo Adell and Andrew Valesquez to tie the game. Sierra was waved around towards home as Gordon threw the ball to cut-off man Correa who got it home to Gary Sanchez just in time for the out, moving the game to the tenth inning.
The Twins lacked the ability to get any runs in the tenth inning, leaving the game wide open to the Angels. With runners on first and third, Luis Rengifo hit a sinking line drive into center field. Byron Buxton charged hard, dove and made the fantastic catch. He got up and threw out Ohtani at first base to end the inning.
The Angels continued to chip away at the Twins pitching before getting a walk-off homerun from Taylor Ward in the bottom of the 11th inning to win the game. A tough loss for the Twins who looked to complete a second straight shutout as late as the eighth inning.
The Twins finish out their west coast series with the Angels tomorrow and heading back home to face the Kansas City Royals and hope to see former teammate Brent Rooker.
Pitching matchup tomorrow:
Sunday 1:07 pm CST: Chris Archer (2-5, 4.02 ERA) vs RHP Davidson (1-3, 7.91 ERA)
Bullpen Usage Spreadsheet