MINNESOTA 5, MILWAUKEE 2 IN MILWAUKEE
Date: Saturday, June 15.
Batting stars: Torii Hunter was 2-for-3 with two doubles and a walk. Doug Mientkiewicz was 2-for-5 with two doubles. Eric Milton was 2-for-4.
Pitching stars: Milton struck out eight in eight innings, giving up two runs on five hits and no walks. Eddie Guardado pitched a scoreless inning, giving up two hits.
Opposition stars: Richie Sexson was 2-for-4 with a home run, his seventeenth. Geoff Jenkins was 1-for-4 with a triple. Jayson Durocher struck out four in two shutout innings, giving up one hit and two walks.
The game: There was no score until the fourth, when the Twins broke through with four runs. Hunter drove in the first run with a doubleand another run scored on a ground out. With two out and a man on third, Luis Rivas was intentionally walked to get to Milton. Milton ruined the strategy with an RBI single and Jacque Jones followed with another RBI single. Bobby Kielty brought home a run in the fifth with a single. The Brewers got on the board in the seventh when Sexson homered and added a run in the eighth on a Mark Loretta double. They brought the tying run up to the plate with one out in the ninth, getting singles from Ronnie Belliard and Sexson, but ex-Twin Alex Ochoa popped up and Jenkins grounded back to the pitcher to end the game.
WP: Milton (8-5). LP: Jamey Wright (1-4). S: Guardado (19).
Notes: Jones raised his average to .319...Hunter raised his average to .304...Kielty was 1-for-3 with a walk and was batting .330...A. J. Pierzynski was 0-for-3 with a walk and was batting .325...Twins pitchers were now 3-for-7 in interleague play...The Twins were now 4-4 in interleague play...You may have noticed that I like highlighting players that most people either have never heard of or have completely forgotten about. Today it's Jayson Durocher. He was drafted by the Expos out of high school in 1993. He was a starter in the low minors through 1997 and didn't do badly, but the Expos were very slow to promote him, leaving him in Class A for four years. They moved him to the bullpen in 1998 and he did poorly, but maybe he just needed time to adjust, because he did much better in 1999 and reached AAA, doing very well there in seventeen games. It didn't impress Montreal much, though, as they allowed him to become a free agent. He was in the minors with San Diego in 2000 and with Texas in 2001, not pitching well at all in the Pacific Coast League. Milwaukee signed him for 2002 and, back in the International League, he again pitched well. After pitching well in twenty appearances, the Brewers promoted him in mid-June and, after ten-plus years in the minors, Jayson Durocher was in the big leagues. He made the most of it, going 1-1, 1.88, 1.00 WHIP with 44 strikeouts in 48 innings. Unfortunately, that was as good as it would get for him. He battled injuries in 2003, pitching only six games for the Brewers. He sat out two years, tried to come back in 2006 in AAA with Texas, but could pitch in only four games before his career ended. He has been a scout with Tampa Bay, but I could not tell if he still is or not. It's not a great playing career, but he had one really good season, which is one more than a lot of people ever have.
Record: Minnesota was 38-30, in first place by five games over Chicago and Cleveland.