Tag Archives: clutchiness

2003 Rewind: Game One Hundred Nine

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 JonesHunter, 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.

2003 Rewind: Game One Hundred Two

MINNESOTA 6, CLEVELAND 5 IN CLEVELAND

Date:  Friday, July 25.

Batting stars:  Doug Mientkiewicz was 3-for-5 with two doubles and two RBIs.  Shannon Stewart was 3-for-5 with a double.  Torii Hunter was 2-for-5 with two RBIs.

Pitching star:  Eddie Guardado struck out two in a perfect inning.

Opposition stars:  Milton Bradley was 3-for-4 with a double.  Ryan Ludwick was 2-for-4 with a home run, a double, and two RBIs.  Coco Crisp was 2-for-5.

The game:  It was all Indians early.  In the first Crisp doubled, an error put men on first and third, and Bradley hit a two-run double to put Cleveland up 2-0.  In the second, Ben Broussard walked, went to second on a ground out, and scored on Crisp's single to make it 3-0.  In the third Bradley singled and scored from first on Ludwick's double to increase the lead to 4-0.

The Twins started coming back in the fourth.  Singles by HunterA. J. Pierzynski, and Jacque Jones loaded the bases with one out.  All the Twins could do, though, was score on a ground out to cut the lead to 4-1.  They scored again in the fifth, but again missed a chance to do more damage.  Cristian Guzman walked and scored on Stewart's double.  Luis Rivas walked and Mientkiewicz singled to again load the bases, this time with none out.  But again, all the Twins could do was score on a ground out, so they remained behind at 4-3.

Ludwick homered leading off the bottom of the sixth to make it 5-3.  In the seventh the first two Twins struck out, but Rivas walked and scored from first on a Mientkiewicz double and Hunter followed with an RBI single to tie it 5-5.

The Twins took their only lead in the ninth.  Guzman singled and stole second.  With two out Mientkiewicz came through with a double to make it 6-5 Twins.  The Indians went down in order in the bottom of the ninth.

WP:  LaTroy Hawkins (8-2).  LP:  Danys Baez (0-7).  S:  Guardado (24).

Notes:  Denny Hocking was at third base in the continued absence of Corey Koskie.  Stewart was again in right and Morneau was again the DH.

Stewart raised his average to .310.  Jones was 1-for-4 and was also batting .310.

Kenny Rogers pitched six innings, giving up five runs (four earned) on eight hits and a walk and striking out four.  James Baldwin pitched two-thirds of an inning without giving up a run to make his ERA 2.35.  Hawkins retired both men he faced to make his ERA 2.55.

Jake Westbrook started for Cleveland.  He pitched 6.2 innings, giving up four runs on seven hits and three walks and striking out six.

Stewart was 15-for-27 in his last seven games.  He had three doubles, a home run, and four walks over that stretch.  He had also scored at least one run in each of those games.

This was Ludwick's first home run as an Indian.  He had hit one for Texas the year earlier, when he was up for a month.  He wouldn't get regular playing time in the majors until 2007, when he was St. Louis.  He ended with 154 major league homers, with a high of 37 in 2008.  That was the year he made his only all-star team and also won his only Silver Slugger award.  That year really stands out for him.  He batted .299/.375/.591, compared to career numbers of .260/.330/.451.  His next highest numbers in all those categories came in 2012, when he batted .275/.346/.531 with 26 homers.

Despite the chances they missed, the Twins stranded just seven and went 4-for-14 with men in scoring position.

The win moved the Twins back to .500.  Could they get above it this time?

Record:  The Twins were 51-51, in third place in the American League Central, 5.5 games behind Kansas City.  They were 1.5 games behind second-place Chicago.

Lara Recaps: Game Thirteen

LARA 6, MARGARITA 5 IN LARA (10 INNINGS)

Batting stars:  Gorkys Hernandez was 3-for-5 with two RBIs.  Ildemaro Vargas was 3-for-6 with a double and two RBIs.  Josmar Cordero was 2-for-2 with a walk.

Pitching stars:  Nestor Molina pitched four innings, giving up one run on two hits and three walks and striking out four.  Yapson Gomez struck out two in two perfect innings.  Leonel Campos pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit and a walk and striking out one.  Derian Gonzalez pitched a perfect inning.

Opposition stars:  David Rodriguez was 3-for-4 with a home run (his second), a walk, and two RBIs.  Eguy Rosario was 2-for-5.  Henry Centeno pitched 5.1 innings, giving up one run on five hits and two walks and striking out one.

The game:  Cordero singled home a run in the eighth to tie it 3-3.  In the top of the tenth, a wild pitch scored one run and Rodriguez singled home another to make it 5-3.  In the bottom of the tenth, with two out, Lara got consecutive RBI singles by Hernandez, Deiner Lopez, and Vargas to win the game.

WP:  Gonzalez (1-0).  LP:  Alfred Gutierrez (2-2).  S:  None.

Notes:  Cordero is batting .414.  Vargas is batting .355.  Gabriel Moreno is batting .342.  Yordanys Linares and Carlos Rivero are each batting .333.  Yonathan Mendoza is batting .325.  Jecksson Flores is batting .318.  Jose Tabata is batting .308.

Jesus Sanchez gave up a run in one inning and has an ERA of 2.79.  Gomez has an ERA of zero.  Campos has an ERA of 2.35.

Each team used seven pitchers.

Lara stranded 12 and Margarita stranded 11.

Record:  Lara is 9-4  in first place in the West Division, two games ahead of Magallanes.

Next game:  Lara hosts Zulia tonight.

Gigantes Recaps: Game Sixteen

ESTRELLAS 5, GIGANTES 0 AT GIGANTES

Batting stars:  None.

Pitching stars:  Montana DuRapau struck out two in two perfect innings.  Randy Rosario pitched a perfect inning and struck out one.  Fernando Romero pitched a perfect inning and struck out all three batters he faced.

Opposition stars:  Rainel Rosario was 2-for-3 with two home runs and three RBIs.  Socrates Brito was 2-for-4 with two doubles.  Jeremy Pena was 2-for-4 with a home run, his second.  Domingo Acevedo struck out three in three shutout innings, giving up a hit and two walks.  Joey Payamps struck out four in two shutout innings, giving up one hit.

The game:  Estrellas scored single runs in the second and third and three in the eighth to put it away.  Rosario hit a two-run homer and Pena a solo shot in the eighth.

WP:  Payamps (2-1).  LP:  Scott Harkin (0-1).  S:  None.

Notes:  Logan Moore was 0-for-1 and is batting .375.  Kelvin Gutierrez was 1-for-3 and is batting .364.  Ronald Guzman was 0-for-3 and is batting .323.

DuRapau and Romero each has an ERA of zero.  Rosario has an ERA of 1.29.

The Gigantes used three pinch-hitters and a pinch-runner.

The Gigantes were 0-for-8 with men in scoring position.

There was a 1:14 minute rain dealy.  There was supposed to be a second game, making it a doubleheader, but it was postponed.

Record:  The Gigantes are 8-9, but are only a game and a half behind first-place Estrellas.  They are a half game behind fifth-place Licey.

Next game:  The Gigantes host the Toros del Este today.

2003 Rewind: Game Sixty-six

ARIZONA 9, MINNESOTA 2 IN MINNESOTA

Date:  Saturday, June 14.

Batting stars:  Corey Koskie was 2-for-3 with two walks.  Cristian Guzman was 2-for-5.

Pitching star:  Juan Rincon struck out four in 3.1 scoreless innings of relief, giving up two hits and no walks.

Opposition stars:  Miguel Batista struck out seven in six innings, giving up an unearned run on four hits and three walks.  Alex Cintron was 3-for-4 with two doubles, a walk, and three runs.  Luis Gonzalez was 3-for-5 with a double and four RBIs.  Carlos Baerga was 2-for-4 with two doubles, two runs, and two RBIs.  Rod Barajas was 2-for-4 with two doubles and three RBIs.

The game:  Cintron hit a one-out double and scored on Gonzalez' two-out single to put the Diamondbacks on the board in the first inning.  The Twins had a pair of singles in the bottom of the first but did not score.  Back-to-back doubles by Baerga and Barajas made it 2-0 in the second.  The Twins again put two on in the bottom of the second but did not score.

Arizona broke it open in the fifth.  Tony Womack singled, Cintron walked, and Junior Spivey was hit by a pitch to load the bases.  Gonzalez doubled in two runs.  An intentional walk to Mark Grace re-loaded the bases.  A force out at home made two outs, but back-to-back ground-rule doubles by Baerga and Barajas brought in four more runs, making the score 8-0 Diamondbacks.

The Twins got on the board in the sixth.  Koskie singled and an error put men on first and third with none out, but Torii Hunter's RBI ground out produced the only run of the inning.  In the seventh, consecutive one-out singles by Luis RivasLew Ford, and Guzman produced another run.  Koskie walked to load the bases, but Justin Morneau grounded into a double play to end the inning.

Arizona added a run in the ninth on a double by Cintron and a single by Gonzalez.

WP:  Batista (4-3).  LP:  Joe Mays (7-4).  S:  None.

Notes:  Matthew LeCroy was behind the plate in place of A. J. Pierzynski.  Morneau was the DH.

Ford replaced Jacque Jones in left field in the sixth inning.  Tom Prince pinch-hit for Doug Mientkiewicz in the sixth and stayed in the game behind the plate, with LeCroy moving to first base.

Morneau was 0-for-4 and was batting .400.  Jones was 0-for-3 and was batting .307.

Mays started for the Twins and pitched 4.2 innings.  As you can see, he didn't do badly for the first four, but his line was eight runs, eight hits, two walks, and four strikeouts.

Guzman had two hits in each of the last four games.  He was 8-for-19 with a triple.  He raised his average from .255 to .268.

The Twins stranded 10 and were 1-for-9 with men in scoring position.

I remember Batista, but I'd forgotten he was around so long.  He played in eighteen seasons, playing until he was 41.  2003 was right about in the middle of his career.  He never had a season in which he didn't have at least one relief appearance, but he was primarily a starter through 2008 with the exception of 2005, when he made 71 appearances out of the bullpen for Toronto.  2003 was probably his best season:  he was 10-9, 3.54, 1.33 WHIP.  He was never great, but with a few exceptions he was never really bad, either.  For his career he was 102-115, 4.48, with an ERA+ of 100.  He appeared in 658 games, 248 of them starts.  He pitched 1956.1 innings.  Control, or rather a lack of it, contributed to keeping him from being better:  he walked 4.1 per nine innings and the only things he ever led the league in were walks (96 in 2004) and wild pitches (14 in 2006).  A guy who can be counted on to be average has value, and that value kept Miguel Batista in the majors for quite a long time.

Record:  The Twins were 38-28, in first place in the American League Central, five games ahead of Kansas City.

Gigantes Recap: Game Four

ESCOGIDO 3, GIGANTES 1 AT ESCOGIDO

Batting star:  Ronald Guzman was 2-for-3 with a double and a walk.

Pitching stars:  Dustin Crenshaw struck out six in five innings, giving up three runs (two earned) on seven hits and a walk.  Raynel Espinal pitched a perfect inning, striking out one.  Marcos Molina pitched a scoreless inning, giving up one hit.

Opposition stars:  Joe Dunand was 2-for-3 with a double.  Denyi Reyes pitched four shutout innings, giving up two hits and striking out two.

The game:  Escogido scored three in the first and that was all they needed.  Chas McCormick singled, stole second, and scored on a Cesar Puello single.  An error and a walk loaded the bases.  With one out, Julio Y. Rodriguez had an RBI single and Dunand hit a sacrifice fly, making it 3-0 Escogido.

The Gigantes had a man on second with one out in the first, a man on third with one out in the second, and a man on second with one out in the sixth, but did not score.  They finally got on the board in the ninth.  Guzman and Rafael Lantigua started the inning with singles, bringing the tying run to the plate.  A ground out and a sacrifice fly brought home one run, but they also made two outs, and a strikeout ended the game.

WP:  Franklyn Kilome (1-0).  LP:  Crenshaw (0-1).  S:  Steven Wilson (1).

Notes:  Lantigua is batting 1.000.  Abiatal Avelino was 0-for-3 and is batting .417.  Guzman is batting .375.  Carlos Peguero is batting .333.

Espinal has an ERA of zero.  Randy Rosario pitched a third of an inning without giving up a run and has an ERA of zero.  Yunior Marte retired both men he faced and has an ERA of zero.

Gigantes manager Luis Urueta was ejected in the seventh inning.  He was thrown out by the first base umpire following a walk.  I don't know what the call was that prompted him to get tossed.

The Gigantes were 0-for-8 with men in scoring position.  Escogido was not that much better at 2-for-11.

Record:  The Gigantes are 2-2, tied for fourth with Escogido.  The Toros del Este remain in first place, but are still just 1-0 due to rainouts.

Next game:  Following an off day, the Gigantes host Licey on Friday.

Gigantes Recap: Game Three

GIGANTES 9, AGUILAS 8 AT GIGANTES (12 INNINGS)

Batting stars:  Jose Siri was 3-for-4 with a double, a walk, and two runs.  Abiatal Avelino was 2-for-5 with two walks and two RBIs.  Carlos Peguero was 2-for-5 with a walk.  Oneil Cruz was 2-for-5.  Richard Urena was 2-for-6 with a double.

Pitching stars:  Tiago Da Silva struck out three in three innings of relief, giving up one run on one hit and one walk.  Carlos Ramirez struck out two in a scoreless inning, giving up two hits.  Domingo Tapia struck out two in a perfect inning.  Ramon Ramirez pitched a scoreless inning despite giving up a hit and two walks.  He struck out one.  Wily Peralta pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit and striking out one.  Yerry De Los Santos struck out all three men he faced.

Opposition stars:  Victor Robles was 3-for-5 with a home run, a walk, and two RBIs.  John Nogowski was 3-for-6 with three RBIs.  Deivy Grullon was 2-for-4.  Wilmer Difo was 2-for-5 with a double, a walk, and two runs.  Juan Lagares was 2-for-6.

The game:  Robles homered leading off the game to put Aguilas up 1-0.  The Gigantes took the lead with two in the bottom of the first.  Siri doubled and a pair of walks loaded the bases.  Juan Francisco then delivered a two-run single to make it 2-1 Gigantes.

It went to 4-1 in the second.  Siri walked and scored on an error which sent Ronald Guzman all the way to third.  A wild pitch scored Guzman.  Aguilas got back into it in the third.  Edmundo Sosa doubled and scored on a two-out single-plus-error by Lagares.  Melky Cabrera then delivered an RBI single to make it 4-3.  Aguilas tied it in the fourth.  Difo doubled, went to third on Grullon's single, and scored on a double play.

The Gigantes took the lead back in the fifth.  With one out Peguero and Urena singled and a hit batsman loaded the bases.  Curz and Siri each had an RBI single to make it 6-4 Gigantes.  Each team scored once in the seventh, bringing the score to 7-5.

Aguilas went back in front in the eighth.  Singles by Rodriguez, Difo, and Grullon loaded the bases.  With one out Robles had an RBI single and Nogowski had a two-run single, making the score 8-6 Aguilas.  The first two Gigantes were retired in the ninth, but Gilberto Celestino singled, Ronald Guzman walked, and Avelino delivered a game-tying single to send the game to extra innings.

There was no scoring in the tenth or eleventh.  In the twelfth we started the "man on second" rule.  It did Aguilas no good, as all three of their batters struck out.  An intentional walk started the bottom of the inning.  A bunt/fielder's choice loaded the bases.  Peguero then hit a sacrifice fly to end the game.

WP:  De Los Santos (1-0).  LP:  Jose Adames (0-1).  S:  None.

Notes:  Avelino is batting .556.  Siri is batting .462.  Peguero is batting .364.  Celestino and Webster Rivas are each batting .333.  Guzman is batting .308.  Urena is batting .300.

The teams combined to use twenty-one pitchers.  Aguilas used twelve and the Gigantes used nine.  I still don't know for sure if there's a three-batter minimum, but there may be, because the only pitcher to face fewer than three batters did so to end the inning.

The Gigantes have gone to extra innings in each of the last three games.  I don't know what the major league record is, but three seems like it has to be pretty close.

The Gigantes again had a ton of scoring chances, going 5-for-18 with men in scoring position.  They stranded 18.

Record:  The Gigantes are 2-1, tied for second with the Tigres del Licey.  The Toros del Este are in first place, but due to rainouts have only played one game.  They are, of course, 1-0.

Next game:  The Gigantes are at Escogido tonight.

Gigantes Recap: Game Two

ESCOGICO 9, GIGANTES 6 AT GIGANTES (12 INNINGS)

Batting stars:  Abiatal Avalina was 3-for-4 with two walks and three runs.  Jose Siri was 3-for-6 with two runs.  Ronald Guzman was 2-for-6 with a double.

Pitching stars:  Rogelio Armenteros struck out five in three shutout innings, giving up no hits and one walk.  Randy Rosario pitched a perfect inning.  Montana DuRapau retired all four men he faced, striking out two.  Ramon Ramirez pitched a scoreless inning, walking one and striking out one.  Yunior Marte pitched a scoreless inning despite allowing three walks.

Opposition stars:  Jim Haley was 2-for-4 with a double and a walk.  Josh Lowey pitched three innings of relief, giving up one run on three hits and a walk.  Tai Tiedemann struck out four in two innings, giving up an unearned run on no hits and no walks.

The game:  The Gigantes struck first.  In the first inning Siri singled, Avelino walked, a ground out moved them to second and third, and Kelvin Gutierrez delivered a two-run single.  The lead went to 3-0 in the third when Avalina singled and scored from first on Guzman's double.

Escogido got on the board in the fourth when Wander Franco walked, went to third on a wild pitch-plus-error, and scored on another wild pitch.  Each team scored once in the fifth.  For Escogido, doubles by Otto Lopez and Jimmy Paredes plated the run.  For the Gigantes Siri singled, stole second, and scored on an Avalina single, making the score 4-2.

It went to 5-2 in the seventh when Avalina walked, went to third on Guzman's single, and scored on an error.  In the eighth, however, Escogido scored three times to tie it.  Ivan Castillo doubled and Franco singled, putting men on first and third.  A ground out scored a run and Haley's single again put men on first and third.  A hit batsman loaded the bases and Julio Y. Rodriguez hit a two-run single, knotting the score at 5-5.

There was no score in the ninth.  There was no score in the tenth.  There was no score in the eleventh.  So, in the twelfth, we used the "start with a man on second" rule.  For Escogido, a strikeout and a walk put men on first and second.  Haley doubled home the go-ahead run, a sacrifice fly brought home another, a walk and a hit batsman filled the bases, and Tres Barrera's two-run single made it 9-5 Escogido.  The Gigantes scored one on an error, but did not bring the tying run up to bat.

WP:  Tiedemann (1-0).  LP:  Ryan Kussmaul (0-1).  S:  None.

Notes:  Gigantes batters walked nine men and hit five.

The Gigantes again had a ton of at-bats with men in scoring position and could not cash them in.  They went 2-for-22 with men in scoring position, stranding twelve.  Escogido was 6-for-20 with men in scoring position, stranding eleven.

The Gigantes used twelve pitchers, six of them for less than an inning.  I couldn't tell if they have a three-batter minimum rule, as each pitcher who faced fewer than three batters did so to end an inning.

The Gigantes have opened with two extra-inning games.  I don't suppose that's a record or anything, but it does seem at least somewhat unusual.

Record:  The Gigantes are 1-1, tied for second place with three other teams, a half game behind the Toros del Este.

Next game:  The Gigantes host Aguilas tonight.

2003 Rewind: Game Forty-seven

SEATTLE 5, MINNESOTA 2 IN SEATTLE

Date:  Friday, May 23.

Batting stars:  Dustan Mohr was 3-for-4 with two doubles.  Torii Hunter was 2-for-4.  Jacque Jones was 2-for-5.

Pitching star:  Tony Fiore pitched three shutout innings, giving up one walk and striking out one.

Opposition stars:  Mark McLemore was 2-for-3 with a home run (his second), a walk, and two runs.  John Olerud was 2-for-4.  Jamie Moyer pitched five innings, giving up two runs on four hits and three walks and striking out three.  Bert Blyleven's favorite pitcher, Shigetoshi Hasegawa, struck out two in two shutout innings, giving up two hits.

The game:  The Twins had men on first and second with two out in the first, but did not score.  The Mariners jumped on Brad Radke for three runs in the first inning, although the defense did not help him any.  Ichiro Suzuki reached on an error, Carlos Guillen walked, and Edgar Martinez hit a one-out single, loading the bases.  Olerud then hit a potential double play ball, but Cristian Guzman missed the throw at second base, allowing two runs to score.  Mike Cameron hit an RBI double, making it 3-0 Seattle after one.

The Twins got one back in the second, but missed a chance for more.  Todd Sears led off with a single and Mohr doubled, putting men on second and third with none out.  A ground out scored one, but a strikeout and a fly out ended the inning.  The lead went back to three in the bottom of the second, as McLemore led off with a home run to make it 4-1.  It went to 5-1 in the fourth on singles by McLemore and Dan Wilson, a sacrifice bunt, and a sacrifice fly.

The Twins scored in the fifth, but again missed a chance for more.  Luis Rivas and Jones opened the inning with singles, putting men on first and third with none out, but a ground out scored the only run they got, making the score 5-2.  And that was it.  The Twins got a man to second a couple of times, but never got the tying run up to bat.

WP:  Jamie Moyer (7-2).  LP:  Radke (5-4).  S:  Kazuhiro Sasaki (7).

Notes:  Sears was at first base in place of Doug Mientkiewicz.  Bobby Kielty was the DH.

Jones was batting .343.  Mohr was batting .320.

Radke pitched five innings, giving up five runs (two earned) on nine hits and two walks and struck out none.  His ERA was 5.43.

The Twins were 0-for-7 with men in scoring position and stranded eight.

This was the only season in which Moyer made the all-star team.  He went 21-7, 3.27, 1.23 WHIP.  He finished fifth in Cy Young voting that year, one of three times he finished in the top six.  He was age forty in 2003, so he would only play eight more seasons.

Record:  The Twins were 27-20, in first place in the American League Central, 1.5 games ahead of Kansas City.

Gigantes Recap: Game One

The Dominican League started play last night.  As with the Mexican League, we've chosen a team at random to follow.  Our team will be the Gigantes del Cibao.

GIGANTES 8, AGUILAS 5 AT AGUILAS (10 INNINGS)

Batting stars:  Juan Francisco was 3-for-6 with three doubles and four RBIs.  Kelvin Gutierrez was 2-for-4 with two walks and two runs.  Carlos Peguero was 2-for-4 with a walk.

Pitching stars:  Chris Ellis struck out three in three shutout innings of relief, giving up only a walk.  Rayman Guduan pitched a perfect inning.  Ramon Ramirez pitched a scoreless inning, giving up a hit.

Opposition stars:  Robel Garcia was 1-for-3 with a home run and a walk.  Rangel Ravelo was 1-for-4 with a home run.

The game:  In the first inning walks to Jose Siri, Ronald Guzman, and Gutierrez loaded the bases with one out.  Francisco then delivered a two-run double to put the Gigantes up 2-0.  Aguilas got on the board in the second on a Garcia homer, making it 2-1.

Each team scored one in the third.  For the Gigantes, Peguero and Wilin Rosario singled and a sacrifice fly scored the run.  For Aguilas, Wilmer Difo walked, went to second on a ground out, and scored on an error, leaving the score 3-2.

There was more scoring in the fourth.  For the Gigantes, singles by Jason Krizan and Guzman put men on first and third.  A force out scored a run.  Francisco doubled, putting men on second and third, and a wild pitch brought home a second run.  For Aguilas, Ravelo homered.  It was 5-3 Gigantes through four.

The bullpens then settled in.  The Gigantes loaded the bases with one out in the eighth but did not score.  It cost them, because Aguilas tied it in the bottom of the inning.  Walks to Difo and Victor Robles put men on first and second with one out.  Melky Cabrera singled home a run and Juan Ligares singled home another, making the score 5-5.

Neither team scored in the ninth, so we went to the tenth.  No "start with a man on second" rule here, at least not in the tenth inning.  The Gigantes didn't need it.  Guzman walked, Gutierrez singled, and Francisco hit a two-run double.  Webster Rivas had an RBI single to make it 8-5 Gigantes.  Aguilas got a two-out single in the bottom of the inning but did not bring the tying run up to bat.

WP:  Guduan (1-0).  LP:  Junior Fernandez (0-1).  S:  Ramirez.

Notes:  Lots of big-leaguers are playing for Aguilas, including Melky Cabrera, Victor Robles, Juan Lagares, Rangel Ravelo, Wilmer Difo, Luis Castillo (not the former Twin), Buddy Boshers, and Neftali Feliz.

The Gigantes stranded 15 men and were 3-for-20 with men in scoring position.  Twenty at-bats with men in scoring position is a ton of at-bats.  Aguilas had only five at-bats with men in scoring position, going 2-for-5.

Richelson Pena started for the Gigantes.  He pitched four innings, allowing three runs on two hits and a walk and striking out one.

Record:  The Gigantes are 1-0, tied for first place with the Tigres del Licey.

Next game:  The Gigantes host Escogido tonight.