MINNESOTA 8, SEATTLE 4 IN SEATTLE
Date: Friday, July 5.
Batting stars: Corey Koskie was 2-for-3 with two doubles and a walk. Bobby Kielty was 2-for-4. Torii Hunter was 1-for-4 with a grand slam, his nineteenth home run.
Pitching star: Eric Milton pitched a complete game, giving up four runs on seven hits and one walk and striking out three.
Opposition stars: John Olerud was 2-for-4 with a home run, his thirteenth. Mike Cameron was 1-for-3 with a three-run homer, his fifteenth. James Baldwin pitched six innings, giving up three runs on seven hits and a walk and striking out three.
The game: The Twins had a man in scoring position with none out in the second and one out in the third and failed to score. It looked like that might come back to haunt them, as Cameron hit a three-run homer in the fourth to give the Mariners a 3-0 lead. Olerud homered leading off the fourth to make it 4-0. The Twins finally got to Baldwin in the seventh. Koskie led off with a double and scored on a Matthew LeCroy single. Jacque Jones followed with a two-run homer to cut the lead to 4-3. The home run did not kill the rally. Bobby Kielty and A. J. Pierzynski singled off Jeff Nelson, a wild pitch tied it up, and a walk, a bunt, and an intentional walk loaded the bases. Hunter then unloaded them with a grand slam. This time it did kill the rally, but no one cared. It was an eight-run inning and the Twins had the game under control. Milton did not allow a baserunner after that.
WP: Milton (10-6). LP: Nelson (1-1). S: None.
Notes: Cristian Guzman was moved up to the leadoff spot, with Jones batting sixth. They each went 1-for-4, but of course Jones hit the two-run homer...Hunter's average was now .301...LeCroy was the DH, going 1-for-4. He was batting .320...Koskie had a ten-game hitting streak. He was 13-for-34 and nine of his thirteen hits were doubles. He also had a home run, meaning ten of his thirteen hits were for extra bases. He also drew five walks and stole a base. He would hit in one more game before his streak was snapped...Milton threw 119 pitches in the complete game. Later in Gardy's career, I doubt he would've let Milton pitch the ninth, especially with a relatively rested bullpen and a four-run lead. I can't prove that, obviously, and I'm not criticizing him for doing it. Milton was pitching very well. I just don't think that, say, 2010 Gardy would've had Milton throw a complete game in that sitaution.
Notes: The Twins were 49-38, in first place, leading Chicago by 7.5 games.