Tag Archives: sweep

2003 Rewind: Game Twenty-seven

MINNESOTA 6, TAMPA BAY 5 IN MINNESOTA (13 INNINGS)

Date:  Thursday, May 1.

Batting stars:  Cristian Guzman was 3-for-6 with a triple and a double.  Corey Koskie was 2-for-5 with a home run (his fourth), a walk, and two runs.  Luis Rivas was 2-for-5 with a walk.  Jacque Jones was 2-for-7 with two doubles.

Pitching stars:  J. C. Romero pitched 1.2 scoreless innings, giving up only a walk.  LaTroy Hawkins struck out two in 1.1 perfect innings.  Eddie Guardado struck out two in two scoreless innings, giving up one hit.  Tony Fiore struck out two in two scoreless innings, giving up one hit.

Opposition stars:  Javier Valentin was 2-for-4 with two walks.  Aubrey Huff was 2-for-5 with a home run (his fifth), a walk, and two runs.  Lance Carter pitched three innings, giving up one run despite allowing three hits and three walks.

The game:  The Devil Rays jumped on starter Joe Mays for four runs in the first inning.  With one out, Rocco Baldelli doubled and scored on a Travis Lee single.  Huff walked.  Mays then had Lee picked off but threw the ball away, putting men on second and third.  Marlon Anderson doubled but only one run scored--Huff apparently thought the ball might be caught and only advanced to third.  He scored on a ground out, however, and Valentin singled in the fourth run.

Mays settled down after that, and the Twins worked on cutting that lead.  In the second Bobby Kielty singled, went all the way to third on a passed ball, and scored on a ground out to make it 4-1.  Koskie led off the fourth with a home run to cut it to 4-2.  Matthew LeCroy followed with a single, but the next two men flied out.  Todd Sears walked, however, and A. J. Pierzynski singled home a run, making it a one-run game at 4-3.

Huff hit a two-out homer in the fifth, increasing Tampa Bay's lead back to two at 5-3.  In the sixth, the Twins loaded the bases with none out.  Torii Hunter doubled, Kielty walked, and Sears was hit by a pitch.  Pierzynski brought home one run on a ground out, but that was all the Twins could do, and they remained behind 5-4.  They again loaded the bases with one out in the seventh, but Kielty lined into a double play.

It was still 5-4 going to the bottom of the ninth.  With one out Koskie singled, Dustan Mohr doubled, and Hunter was intentionally walked, once again loading the bases.  Kielty hit a sacrifice fly to tie the score, but Mohr apparently tried to score from second on the fly ball and was thrown out at the plate, sending the game to extra innings.

This was back when men were men:  none of this weak "start with a runner on second" garbage.  Guzman hit a one-out triple in the eleventh, but the Twins couldn't score him.  The Devil Rays got a man to third with one out in the thirteenth, but also couldn't score him.  With one out in the bottom of the thirteenth, Jones hit a ground-rule double and Guzman followed with another double, winning the game for the Twins.

WP:  Fiore (1-0).  LP:  Travis Harper (0-2).  S:  None.

Notes:  Kielty was in right field.

Jones was batting .324.  Kielty was 1-for-4 and was batting .319.

Mohr was 1-for-2, raising his average to .143.

Mays did well after the first inning, but of course the first inning counts, too.  He pitched six innings and gave up five runs on seven hits and three walks, striking out five.  His ERA was 5.30.  Fiore lowered his ERA to 5.74.

Hawkins kept his ERA at zero.  Guardado's ERA was 0.77.

I assume there must by more to the story of Mohr trying to score from second on a sacrifice fly.  I'm guessing that either the outfielder crashed into the fence and fell down, or the throw in from the outfield got away, or something like that.  Or, as I look at it, he may have overrun third base or fallen down between third and home.  What the play-by-play on b-r.com tells me is that he was thrown out at home and that the play went 8-3-5.

Fiore seems like an odd choice to pitch in the extra innings.  He had pitched an inning the day before, was having a poor year, and there appear to have been better relievers available.  Maybe Ron Gardenhire just didn't want to blow out the bullpen and decided Fiore was expendable to pitch as long as he could.  We have to say, he got away with it.

The Twins had now won three in a row and once again were involved in a series sweep.

Record:  The Twins were 13-14, in third place in the American League Central, five games behind Kansas City.

2003 Rewind: Game Eighteen

NEW YORK 8, MINNESOTA 2 IN NEW YORK

Date:  Sunday, April 20.

Batting stars:  A. J. Pierzynski was 2-for-3 with a double.  Chris Gomez was 2-for-4.

Pitching stars:  Johan Santana struck out two in 1.2 scoreless innings, giving up one hit and three walks.  Mike Fetters pitched a scoreless inning, giving up one hit.  Eddie Guardado pitched a scoreless inning, striking out one.

Opposition stars:  Mike Mussina struck out eight in seven innings, giving up two runs on five hits and three walks.  Nick Johnson was 2-for-3 with two walks and two runs.  Alfonso Soriano was 2-for-4 with a walk and two runs.  Bernie Williams was 2-for-5 with a home run (his fourth), a double, two runs, and two RBIs.  Jason Giambi was 2-for-5 with a three-run homer, his fourth.  Raul Mondesi was 2-for-5 with a double,

The game:  The Yankees jumped on Twins starter Kyle Lohse, scoring three runs before a man was retired.  Soriano and Johnson singled and Giambi hit a three-run homer.  Williams homered in the third to make it 4-0.

The Twins got on the board in the fourth.  Gomez led off with a single and Corey Koskie walked.  The next two batters went out, but Bobby Kielty walked and Pierzynski had an RBI single.  The Twins missed a chance for more, however, when Koskie was thrown out at the plate.  The Yankees responded with three more in the fifth.  Soriano and Johnson again singled.  Giambi struck out this time, but Williams hit an RBI double and with two out, Jorge Posada hit a two-run double, making the score 7-1 New York.

New York left the bases loaded in the sixth, but added one in the seventh on doubles by Mondesi and Hideki Matsui.  The Twins got their last run in the seventh when Pierzynski doubled and scored on a pair of wild pitches.

WP:  Mussina (4-0).  LP:  Lohse (2-2).  S:  None.

NotesGomez was at short in place of Cristian Guzman.  Michael Cuddyer was in right field.  Bobby Kielty was the DH.

Matthew LeCroy went behind the plate in the eighth in place of A. J. Pierzynski.  Dustan Mohr went to center in the eighth in place of Torii Hunter.  Denny Hocking pinch-hit for Doug Mientkiewicz in the ninth.

Gomez raised his average to .474.  Kielty was 1-for-3 and was batting .366.  Jacque Jones was 0-for-4 and was batting .333.

Mohr was 0-for-1 and was batting .107.  Hocking was 0-for-1 and was batting .143.  Hunter was 0-for-3 and was batting .172.

Lohse lasted 4.1 innings, allowing seven runs on ten hits and a walk while striking out two.  By game scores this was his third-worst game of the season at 16.  He had a 13 (July 8) and a 12 (July 26).

Santana and Fetters each had an ERA of zero.  Guardado's ERA was 1.17.  Tony Fiore gave up a run in one inning and had an ERA of 8.00.

Randy Choate pitched an inning for the Yankees.  He went to spring training for the Twins in 2007.

This was a four-game wrap-around series, so the Twins had one more chance to avoid a series sweep.

Record:  The Twins were 9-9, in third place in the American League Central, 5.5 games behind Kansas City.

2003 Rewind: Game Nine

NEW YORK 2, MINNESOTA 0 IN NEW YORK

Date:  Thursday, April 10.

Batting stars:  Chris Gomez was 2-for-4.  A. J. Pierzynski was 0-for-1 with two hit-by-pitches.

Pitching stars:  Rick Reed pitched four innings, giving up two runs (one earned) on six hits and two walks and striking out two.  Johan Santana struck out eight in four shutout innings of relief, giving up four hits.

Opposition stars:  David Wells pitched a complete game shutout, giving up three hits and striking out six.  Hideki Matsui was 3-for-4 with a double and two RBIs.  Bernie Williams was 3-for-4.  John Flaherty was 2-for-4 with a double.

The game:  The Yankees had men on first and second with two out in the first and second and third with one out in the second, but did not score either time.  That changed in the third.  With one out, Jason Giambi walked and went to third on Williams' single-plus-error.  Matsui then delivered a two-run double to give New York a 2-0 lead.

And that was it for the scoring.  The Twins got a one-out double from Gomez in the fourth, but he was stranded on second.  They put two on with two out in the fifth and did nothing with them.  They did not get a man past first after that, managing only a pair of singles over the next four innings.

WP:  Wells (2-0).  LP:  Reed (0-2).  S:  None.

NotesGomez was at short in place of Cristian Guzman.  Dustan Mohr was in left in place of Jacque Jones.  Michael Cuddyer was in right.

Gomez was batting .364.

The Twins had five starters in this game with batting averages below .200.  At the bottom was Rivas at .091.  Matthew LeCroy was batting .125.  Torii Hunter was batting .129.  Cuddyer was batting .143.  Mohr was batting .158.

The Twins made no lineup substitutions.

I don't know why Reed came out after just four innings.  He had thrown seventy pitches, which is a lot for four innings but doesn't seem like a lot for a game.  He would not miss his next start.  Santana obviously did an excellent job, which didn't help in this game but did save the rest of the bullpen for the next one.

You probably remember that Wells threw a perfect game against the Twins.  For his career, he was actually better against them than Mussina was:  19-6, 2.34, 1.01 WHIP in 200.1 innings (38 games, 25 starts).

After sweeping Detroit to start the season, the Twins had now been swept by Toronto and New York.  In the Yankee series, they were outscored 11-4.  In the losing streak they were outscored 30-10.  They would next travel to Toronto to take another shot at the Blue Jays.

Record:  The Twins were 3-6, in fourth place in the American League Central, five games behind Kansas City.