DETROIT 9, MINNESOTA 2 IN MINNESOTA
Date: Saturday, August 2.
Batting stars: Michael Restovich was 2-for-4 with a double. Denny Hocking was 2-for-4 with a double.
Pitching star: Joe Mays pitched 1.1 scoreless innings, giving up a hit and a walk.
Opposition stars: Alex Sanchez was 2-for-3 with two stolen bases (his thirty-first and thirty-second) and a walk. Craig Monroe was 2-for-4 with a three-run homer, a double, a walk, and two runs. Ramon Santiago was 2-for-4 with a stolen base (his fifth) and two RBIs. Warren Morris was 2-for-5 with a triple, a double, and three RBIs. Mike Maroth pitched 5.1 innings, giving up one run on nine hits and three walks and striking out three.
The game: The Twins loaded the bases in the first and had men on first and third in the second, but were turned aside each time. It cost them, as the Tigers scored four in the third. Morris doubled and scored on a Bobby Higginson single. Kevin Witt singled and Monroe hit a three-run homer to make it 4-0 Detroit.
The Twins put two on in the third and again in the fourth but remained scoreless. They finally broke through in the sixth when Restovich singled and scored from first on a Hocking double. They got another run in the seventh when Doug Mientkiewicz walked and scored from first on an A. J. Pierzynski double, cutting the lead to 4-2.
That was as good as it got for the Twins, though. The Tigers put it away in the eighth, scoring five times. Carlos Pena hit a one-out triple. A walk and a hit batsmen loaded the bases with two out. Ramon Santiago scored two with a single, a walk re-loaded the bases, and Morris hit a three-run triple. It was 9-2, and that's how it ended.
WP: Maroth (6-15). LP: Rick Reed (5-10). S: None.
Notes: Matthew LeCroy started behind the plate in place of Pierzynski. Hocking was at third in the continuing absence of Corey Koskie. Dustan Mohr was in left, Restovich in right, and Stewart at DH.
Pierzynski pinch-hit for LeCroy in the seventh and stayed in the game at catcher. Jacque Jones pinch-hit for Mohr in the seventh and stayed in the game in left field. Todd Sears repalced Mientkiewicz at first base in the ninth. Alex Prieto pinch-hit for Luis Rivas in the ninth.
Restovich was batting .400. Stewart was batting .317. Jones was 0-for-1 and was batting .309. Pierzynski was 1-for-2 and was batting .305.
Reed pitched seven innings, giving up four runs on eight hits and one walk and striking out five.
Mays lowered his ERA to 6.42.
As you can see above, the Twins missed lots of scoring chances in this game. They stranded twelve and were 1-for-15 with men in scoring position.
I'd forgotten how hot Restovich was when he first came up. He obviously didn't bat .400, but he had a fine season and one would've thought he'd be in line for more playing time in 2004. Instead he started the season in Rochester. He was up for about two months but got just 47 at-bats. Granted that the Twins had Jones, Hunter, and Stewart, along with Lew Ford, to play the outfield. Still, given that their most-used DH in 2004 was Jose Offerman, it seems like there should've been more at-bats available for Restovich.
Tiger players with a Twins connection include Warren Morris, Craig Monroe, Eric Munson, Matt Walbeck, and Maroth.
The Twins again missed a chance to go over .500.
Record: The Twins were 54-55, in third place in the American League Central, 4.5 games behind Kansas City. They were 3.5 games behind second-place Chicago.