Tag Archives: home runs

2003 Rewind: Game One Hundred Thirty-six


Date:  Sunday, August 31.

Batting stars:  Denny Hocking was 4-for-4 with a home run (his third), a double, a walk, two runs, and three RBIs.  Torii Hunter was 3-for-5 with a double and two RBIs.  A. J. Pierzynski was 2-for-3 with a walk.  Luis Rivas was 2-for-4 with a double, a walk, a stolen base (his fourteenth), and three runs.  Matthew LeCroy was 2-for-5 with a walk and two RBIs.

Pitching stars:  Carlos Pulido pitched 2.2 scoreless innings, giving up two hits and striking out two.  Grant Balfour pitched a perfect inning and struck out one.  Joe Mays pitched 1.1 scoreless innings, giving up a hit and a walk.

Opposition stars:  Hank Blalock was 4-for-5 with a home run (his twenty-fourth), a double, and three runs.  Alex Rodriguez was 3-for-3 with a two-run homer (his fortieth), two walks, three runs.  Mark Teixeira was 3-for-5 with a three-run homer, his twentieth.  Rafael Palmeiro was 2-for-4 with a home run (his thirty-second), a walk, and two runs.  Laynce Nix was 2-for-4 with a walk.  Einar Diaz was 2-for-5.  Jason Jones was 1-for-3 with a home run (his third) and two runs.

The game:  LeCroy had an RBI single in the first to put the Twins up 1-0.  In the bottom of the first Blalock doubled and Rodriguez and Palmeiro hit back-to-back homers to make it 3-1 Rangers.  Jones homered in the second to make it 4-1.  In the third, two singles and a walk loaded the bases with one out.  Nix singled home one and Jones hit a sacrifice fly, increasing the Texas lead to 6-1.

Hocking hit a two-run homer in the fourth to cut the margin to 6-3.  In the fifth, the Twins had men on first and second with two out.  Hunter doubled home one, an intentional walk loaded the bases, and accidental walks to Dustan Mohr and Hocking tied the score.  In the sixth Rivas led off with a double and scored on LeCroy's single to put the Twins in front 7-6.

The Rangers came back in the seventh.  Blalock led off with a home run to tie it.  Rodriguez walked Palmeiro singled, and Teixeira hit a three-run homer to give Texas a 10-7 lead.  But the Twins refused to go away.  In the eighth, LeCroy walked and Corey Koskie singled, putting men on first and third with one out.  Hunter singled home a run and Pierzynski hit a sacrifice fly to make it 10-9.  Hocking led off the ninth with a single, Stewart walked, a bunt moved the runners up, and Jacque Jones hit a sacrifice fly to tie it 10-10.

The momentum was all with the Twins, and it did them as much good as momentum usually does.  Nix led off the ninth with a single, was bunted to second, went to third on a wild pitch, and scored on Diaz' single to win the game for the Rangers.

WP:  Francisco Cordero (4-6).  LP:  Eddie Guardado (1-5).  S:  None.

Notes:  Hocking remained at short in place of Cristian Guzman.  Stewart was in left with Mohr in right.  Michael Ryan pinch-hit for Mohr in the eighth and went to right field.  Jones pinch-hit for Doug Mientkiewicz in the ninth.  Hocking moved to first base, with Chris Gomez coming in to play short.

Ryan was 0-for-1 and was batting .333.  Stewart was 0-for-5 and was batting .310.  Jones was batting .308.  Pierzynski raised his average to .301.  Mientkiewicz was 1-for-5 and was batting .300.

Brad Radke started and lasted just 2.1 innings, allowing six runs on nine hits and a walk.  He struck out none and his ERA went back up over five at 5.02.  His game score of 14 was his second-lowest of the season, ahead of an 8 in his second start of the season.

Pulido's ERA remained zero.  Balfour had an ERA of 1.65.  J. C. Romero allowed four runs in two-thirds of an inning to raise his ERA to 5.20.  Mays lowered his ERA to 6.30.

Texas used three pitchers with connections to the Twins.  Starter R. A. Dickey pitched 4.2 innings, allowing six runs (five earned) on eight hits and four walks and striking out four.  Ron Mahay pitched 1.1 scoreless innings.  Aaron Fultz allowed two runs in a third of an inning.

There were six home runs in the game.  Five of them were hit by the Rangers.

Chicago won and Kansas City lost, so the Twins remained tied for second, but fell farther out of first.

Record:  The Twins were 71-65, tied for second in the American League Central with Kansas City, 1.5 games behind Chicago.

2003 Rewind: Game Eighty-one


Date:  Monday, June 30.

Batting stars:  A. J. Pierzynski was 3-for-4 with a home run (his ninth) and two runs.  Bobby Kielty was 1-for-3 with a home run (his ninth) and a walk.

Pitching star:  Juan Rincon pitched 4.1 innings, giving up one run on one hit and two walks and striking out one.

Opposition stars:   Magglio Ordonez was 2-for-3 with two home runs (his thirteenth and fourteenth), a walk, and three RBIs.  Jose Valentin was 2-for-4 with a two-run homer, his twelfth.  Willie Harris was 2-for-5 with a triple.  Carlos Lee was 1-for-3 with a home run (his thirteenth), a walk, and three runs.  Joe Crede was 1-for-4 with a two-run homer, his seventh.  Jon Garland struck out seven in seven innings, giving up two runs on five hits and two walks.

The game:  It got late early, as they say.  Harris led off the bottom of the first with a triple and scored on an Aaron Rowand single.  Crede hit a two-run homer in the second.  In the third Rowand walked and scored on a Frank Thomas double.  Ordonez followed with a two-run homer.  After an error, Valentin hit a two-run homer, making the score 8-0 White Sox.

There's not a lot to say after that.  The Twins got on the board in the seventh on back-to-back homers by Kielty and Pierzynski.  In the eighth Ordonez and Lee homered.  The Twins got one more in the ninth when Pierzynski singled and scored on a Lew Ford double.  And that was that.

WP  Garland (6-6).  LP:  Joe Mays (8-5).  S:  None.

Notes:  Ford was 1-for-3 and was batting .357.  Corey Koskie was 1-for-3 and was batting .309.  Doug Mientkiewicz was 0-for-2 and was batting .302.  Jacque Jones was 1-for-2 to get back up to .300.

Mays lasted just 2.1 innings, allowing eight runs (seven earned) on six hits and striking out two.  His ERA was 6.30.

Micheal Nakamura gave up a run in 1.1 innings.  His ERA went to 7.82.  He had been with the Twins for 22 games and had appeared in 12 of them.  He then would be sent down to AAA and would not return the rest of the season.  He went from being used every day to being in Rochester in a big hurry.

Eight of the ten Chicago runs were scored on homers.  Two of the three Twins runs were scored on homers.

This was Rincon's second-longest appearance of the season.  He had gone five innings on April 6, his first game of the season.  He had six other games in which he pitched three innings or more.

We are now half-way through the 2003 season.  Kansas City was swept in a doubleheader, so despite getting beaten badly the Twins moved into first place.

Record:  The Twins were 43-38, in first place in the American League Central, a half game ahead of Kansas City.

Random Rewind: 1989, Game One Hundred Twenty-five


Date:  Wednesday, August 23.

Batting stars:  Greg Gagne was 4-for-5 with two doubles.  Kent Hrbek was 3-for-4 with two two-run homers (his nineteenth and twentieth) and three runs.  Tim Laudner was 2-for-4 with a double.  Brian Harper was 2-for-4 with two runs.

Pitching star:  Juan Berenguer struck out three in 2.1 scoreless innings, giving up two hits.

Opposition stars:  Ozzie Guillen was 3-for-4.  Ivan Calderon was 3-for-5 with a home run (his twelfth) and two runs.  Carlos Martinez was 2-for-4 with a walk.  Carlton Fisk was 2-for-5 with a three-run homer, his tenth.  Sammy Sosa was 2-for-5.

The game:  The White Sox got two singles and a walk in the second but did not score.  In the bottom of the second, consecutive singles by HrbekDan GladdenCarmelo Castillo, and Laudner as well as a sacrifice fly by Al Newman put the Twins ahead 3-0.  In the third Harper singled and Hrbek hit a two-run homer, to make it 5-0.

Chicago put their first two men on in the fourth but did not score.  In the sixth, however, they got back into the game.  Calderon led off the inning with a home run.  With one out, consecutive singles by Martinez, Sosa, Steve Lyons, and Guillen and a run-scoring ground out produced three more runs, cutting the lead to 5-4.

The Twins increased their lead in the seventh when Harper singled and again Hrbek hit a two-run homer to make it 7-4.  They added a run in the eighth when John Moses singled, went to third on a ground out-plus-error, and scored on Gagne's single, making the score 8-4.

They needed them all.  With one out in the ninth, Scott Fletcher and Calderon singled and Fisk hit a three-run homer to cut the lead to 8-7.  The next two batters flied out, however, and the Twins held on to win.

WP:  Roy Smith (10-4).  LP:  Greg Hibbard (3-5).  S:  None.

Notes:  Newman was at second base, as regular Wally Backman was given the day off.  Castillo was in right field in place of Randy Bush.  Bush was used as a pinch-hitter and stayed in the game in right field until the eighth, when Moses pinch-hit and then went to right field.  Laudner was the DH.  Jim Dwyer got the most games at DH with 73 and Gene Larkin had 41.  Others with double-digit games at DH were Harper (19), Laudner (19), Hrbek (18) and Castillo (16).

The Twins leading batter was Kirby Puckett at .333.  He would finish at .339.  Harper was batting .321.  He would finish at .325.  This was the first time Harper was actually given a starting job, at age twenty-nine, and he certainly made the most of it.

Smith started for the Twins and pitched 5.1 innings, allowing four runs on nine hits and two walks and striking out one.  He had pitched very well for the first five innings, but threw ninety-eight pitches.  1989 was his first full season, and it was his best:  10-6, 3.92, 1.34 WHIP.  He would play for two more seasons, but would not come close to matching those numbers.  He was a fairly big guy, 6'3", 200 pounds, but as I recall he did not throw very hard.  He struck out 4.7 betters per nine innings throughout his career, which would seem to support that memory.

Reardon had not pitched since August 19, and then faced just one batter, and so was presumably just brought in to get him some work.  It nearly backfired, as he gave up the three runs in the ninth.  The play-by-play indicates that the next batter hit a long fly ball, so he came close to allowing the tying run.  He did not have a particularly good season in 1989, going 5-4, 4.07, although with a WHIP of 1.10.  He had thirty-one saves, but with eight blown saves.

Hrbek would lead the team with twenty-five home runs.  Gaetti was second with nineteen.  Bush was the only other Twin in double figures, with fourteen.

White Sox starter Hibbard lasted just 1.2 innings.  He allowed three runs on six hits and no walks with no strikeouts.  Bill Long pitched five innings of relief, allowing three runs on six hits and no walks and striking out three.

Record:  The Twins were 61-64, in fifth place in the American League West, sixteen games behind Oakland.  They would finish 80-82, in fifth place, nineteen games behind Oakland.

The White Sox were 53-73, in sixth (last) place in the American League West, 24.5 games behind Oakland.  They would finish 69-92, in sixth place, 29.5 games behind Oakland.

1991 Rewind: World Series Game Two


Date:  Sunday, October 20.

Batting stars:  Chili Davis was 1-for-3 with a two-run homer.  Scott Leius was 1-for-3 with a home run.

Pitching stars:  Kevin Tapani pitched eight innings, giving up two runs on seven hits and no walks and striking out three.  Rick Aguilera struck out three in a scoreless inning, giving up one hit.

Opposition stars:  Tom Glavine pitched an eight-inning complete game, giving up three runs (one earned) on four hits and three walks and striking out six.  Terry Pendleton was 2-for-4.

The game:  In the first Dan Gladden reached on an error and Chuck Knoblauch walked.  Kirby Puckett hit into a double play, but Davis picked him up with a two-run homer, putting the Twins ahead 2-0.  The Braves came right back in the second.  David Justice led off with a single and Sid Bream followed with a double, putting men on second and third with none out.  Brian Hunter hit a sacrifice fly, getting Atlanta on the board, but a ground out and a strikeout kept the Twins ahead 2-1.

Neither team got a hit in the third or fourth.  In the fifth, Greg Olson led off with a double, went to third on a ground out, and scored on Rafael Belliard's sacrifice fly to tie it 2-2.

In the eighth, Belliard led off with a bunt single, was sacrificed to second, and went to third on a Pendleton infield single.  A foul out and a fly out kept them off the board, though, and it cost them.  The Twins entered the inning having gotten only one hit since the first, but Leius led off with a home run, putting them up 3-2.  Hunter got a one-out single in the ninth but did not advance past first base, and the Twins came away with their second win of the series.

WP:  Tapani (1-1).  LP:  Glavine (0-3).  S:  Aguilera (5).

Notes:  The Twins went with a standard lineup and did not make any substitutions.

The Twins had just four hits in the game, but two of them went over the fence.  The home runs accounted for all the Twins runs.

The Braves were 1-for-6 with men in scoring position.  Both of their runs scored on sacrifice flies.

The Twins did not steal any bases in the game.

Leius was another unlikely home run hero, having hit just five during the season.  His career high was fourteen in 1994.  That was the only season in which he hit more than five home runs.

This was the game with the famous play where Ron Gant overran first base and was tagged out by Hrbek.  It happened in the third inning.  Lonnie Smith was on first with two out.  Gant singled to left, and Smith went to third.  Gladden's throw went past third base and was fielded by Tapani.  Tapani threw to first and Gant, trying to get back to first after rounding it, went past the base.  Atlanta complained that Hrbek had pulled Gant off first base, but we all know that was just sour grapes on the part of the Braves.

The Twins were looking good through two games.  Atlanta would have to take at least two at home to send the series back to Minnesota.

Record:  The Twins led the best-of-seven series 2-0.

2019 Game 65: Mariners at Twins

Seattle in town for a 3-game series and bring your glove if you're sitting in the outfield seats as both these teams on pace to demolish the season home run record. Seattle has 5 games in hand so their 1 HR lead may not hold however. I don't get how another team can have played 5 extra games by June 11th, especially since the Twins have made up a bunch of their early cancellations. Twins coming off a nice 6-4 road trip and now have 9 games at home, mostly against division bottom feeders. A 6-3 home stand would be great and really put the pressure on Cleveland to pack it in for the year.

Mike Leake on for the Mariners and he pitched a complete game in his last outing. For those who forgot, a complete game is where the starting pitcher goes the whole nine innings and gets all 27 outs, no relief pitcher comes in. Not sure teams could do that anymore but apparently Mike Leake just did that just last week. Not a big strikeout pitcher but has done well against the Twins over the past year. Martin Perez on for the Twins, and although he's come down from his lofty early season perch, has continued to pitch quite well for the Twins.

Kind of a rainy day and forecast calls more rain off and on but I'm guessing they get this one in. Back to 7:10p starts.

Twins Lineup
RF Kepler
SS Polanco
DH Cruz
LF Rosario
3B Sano
1B Gonzalez
2B Schoop
C Castro
CF Buxton

Top Twins Tater Tattooists

In honor of Brian Dozier joining Harmon Killebrew in the 40 homer club, here are the single season franchise leaders in HR by position, presented three ways because "most homers by a [position player] is a very squishy conversation.

50% of games at primary position


100% of games at primary position


as X position


Meatloaf – Paradise By The Dashboard Light

Dozzy's flexing his manmuscles and going all the way all over the place, baby.


Ugh, I hate this song so much. Couldn't find a live version of Sam & Dave's “Knock It Out of the Park” though.

3 votes, average: 6.67 out of 103 votes, average: 6.67 out of 103 votes, average: 6.67 out of 103 votes, average: 6.67 out of 103 votes, average: 6.67 out of 103 votes, average: 6.67 out of 103 votes, average: 6.67 out of 103 votes, average: 6.67 out of 103 votes, average: 6.67 out of 103 votes, average: 6.67 out of 10 (3 votes, average: 6.67 out of 10)
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