MINNESOTA 5, KANSAS CITY 4 IN KANSAS CITY (10 INNINGS)
Date: Tuesday, May 19.
Batting stars: Cesar Tovar was 2-for-4 with a walk. Rich Reese was 2-for-4 with a walk. Paul Ratliff was 2-for-4.
Pitching star: Ron Perranoski pitched two shutout innings, giving up two hits and a walk.
Opposition stars: Jackie Hernandez was 2-for-3. Joe Keough was 2-for-4. Bob Oliver was 2-for-5 with a home run (his seventh) and four RBIs. Dave Morehead pitched nine innings, giving up four runs on nine hits and five walks and striking out three.
The game: With one out in the first, Mike Fiore and Amos Otis singled and Oliver followed with a three-run homer, putting the Royals up 3-0. The Twins got on the board in the second when Harmon Killebrew walked, went to second on a Reese single, took third on a ground out, and scored on another ground out. The Twins tied it in the third. Tovar led off with a single and Rod Carew walked. A double play followed, but Killebrew had an RBI double and scored on Reese's single to make it 3-3.
That's where it stayed until the eighth. Fiore walked with one out, went to second on a ground out, and scored on Oliver's single to put Kansas City ahead 4-3. The Twins tied it in the ninth when Leo Cardenas singled, went to second on a wild pitch, took third on a ground out, and scored on Tovar's single.
The Royals had men on first and second with none out in the bottom of the ninth, but did not score. In the tenth, Carew led off with a single and Tony Oliva followed with a bunt single. Killebrew struck out, Reese flied out to center with Carew taking third, and a wild pitch brought home the go-ahead run. The first two Kansas City batters in the bottom of the tenth went out. Keough then singled to center, but was thrown out trying to stretch it to a double. The out went 8-5--my guess is that it was a bloop single to short center, that both Carew and Cardenas went out to try to catch it, and it was a heads-up play by third baseman Frank Quilici covering second that ended the game.
WP: Perranoski (3-1).
LP: Future Twin Tom Burgmeier (0-1).
Notes: Jim Holt was in left field in place of Brant Alyea. Paul Ratliff was behind the plate in place of George Mitterwald.
Charlie Manuel pinch-hit for Bill Zepp in the ninth. Rick Renick pinch-hit for Holt in the tenth. Frank Quilici then entered the game at third base, with Bob Allison going to left and replacing Killebrew in the batting order.
Carew was 1-for-4 and was batting .411. Oliva was 1-for-4 and is batting .324. Killebrew was 1-for-4 and was batting .317. Tovar was batting .301. Zepp retired the only man he faced and had an ERA of 1.98. Perranoski had an ERA of 1.47.
Holt was 1-for-4 and was batting .158.
Luis Tiant started and pitched 7.2 innings, giving up four runs on eight hits and three walks and striking out three.
This was the best year of Bob Oliver's career. He batted .260/.309/.451 with 27 home runs and got the lone MVP vote of his career.
The Twins had now won six in a row and nine of eleven. The Angels were hot, too, so the Twins were not able to put any distance between them.
Record: The Twins were 24-10, in first place in the American League West, a half game ahead of California.