So… final game of the Indians series.. we break even if we win this today. Which would be VERY good.. at least we’d still be where we started on Monday and last night’s comeback win should be pretty good for morale.
Of course, the story for the day is still the hellish weather. I’m contributing this little bit of something a friend (several actually) shared on Facebook:
Yeah, you have to wonder if Cleveland keeps double checking their plane tickets to make sure they are in Minnesota. This is the land of the frozen north right?? Welcome to summer in a state covered with water folks – we get humidity and heat.. and today the combo is still working against us. At least it’s a bit better than both Monday and yesterday out there. Humidity is actually dropping a tad already and yes, it’s over 90 but the heat index isn’t over 100.. yet. They are saying there is supposed to be a BIG break in the weather tonight before the heat returns on the weekend. It will be a gorgeous day tomorrow.. looking forward to one beautiful day at least! Anyway, lets see what the boys have to work with after this tropical marathon.
Interestingly, even though it’s a getaway day and the final game of the series, it seems that both teams are putting out their regular starting rotation of players – no one gets a day off – which I think is an indication how seriously both teams are taking this division battle.
|Carrera, CF||Revere, CF|
|Cabrera, A, SS||Casilla, A, 2B|
|Hafner, DH||Mauer, 1B|
|Santana, C, C||Cuddyer, RF|
|LaPorta, 1B||Thome, DH|
|Cabrera, O, 2B||Valencia, 3B|
|Chisenhall, 3B||Young, D, LF|
|Kearns, RF||Nishioka, SS|
|Valbuena, LF||Butera, C|
|Tomlin, P||Blackburn, P|
WOOHOOOO!!!! That was exciting, frustrating, dramatic baseball! There was passion, tragedy, aggravation, relief, miracles & errors – everything you want in a division race actually. It seemed as though each player had a moment you wanted to pat him on the back and then immediately followed by something that made you want to strangle him.. Butera was BRILLIANT throwing out base-stealers but a passed ball (which Blackburn totally misplayed at the base) let a run in. Speaking of Blackburn, it was a GREAT outing from Nick on a day that eats pitchers and spits them out but the 4th inning was PAINFUL and the aforementioned fielding goof cost an out that could have saved Butera’s error by getting an out. Yeah, it was Butera’s error but in my book, there is no excuse for a pitcher not getting an out because he’s on the wrong side of the base. But even after that, he came back out and pitched great again. So I’m granting both Butera and Blackburn rootbeer floats as a cooler/reward.
We also had some CRAZY miscues on the defense – like Revere getting to one of those ridiculous OF flies he catches up to and then missing the catch in the sun. On the other hand, Joe played 1B today by his request and managed to use every inch of his 6’5+” frame to rescue errant throws on several occasions. One of my favorite moments of the game included a misthrow from Casilla to Mauer at 1B that Mauer seemed to miraculously dig up and get the out. Even Lexi knew he owed Mauer in a HUGE way because as the players entered the dugout, Casilla tackled Joe in an impromptu hug shocking Mauer and delighting the fans who witnessed the event via tv broadcast. I’m hoping to find a pic of the event to share with you because the WTF posture from Mauer and the sheer ridiculousness of the activity will entertain us all. However, Lexi also had some really good AB’s and overall had a good game so both he and Mauer also get rootbeer floats for their efforts. Until I find a pic of the actual hug – here’s a pretty entertaining interview with Mauer where he & Casilla joke about the hug – there’s a clip of it right at the end.
Thanks to Thrylos, we have a screen shot from the video!! Thanks Thry!
But as was necessary last night, the game was tied and required late inning offensive heroics to get us back in the lead and eventually get us the win. You’ll never guess who got another terribly important bases-loaded hit to give us the lead… yeah, Danny Valencia. His team was also pretty excited about his efforts today because several of his teammates decided to gang-pie him in the postgame interview… yeah, he can have a rootbeer float too if he can ever get all the shaving cream out of his mouth but until then, he was voted todays unanimous BOD!
The REAL joy comes in the fact that for now, the Twins are once again 5.5 Games back in the division race and set to take on the newly division-leading Detroit Tigers. The boys should have great morale and motivation to bring every ounce of their ability and luck to continuing the upward climb for the season. *crosses fingers, toes, hair & whatever while holding breath*