Game 156: Minnesota Twins (86-69) @ California Angels (75-81)

Sunday September 25, 1988

Both papers’ headlines read that the Twins were able to “steal” a victory from the Angels on their way to a four game sweep in Anaheim.

In fact, that is exactly what the Twins and Dan Gladden did.

With the score tied at two in the top of the seventh, Gladden worked a one-out walk from Dan Petry. On Petry’s next pitch, Gladden took off and successfully stole second base. Gladden moved to third on a ground out to set up the game-winning run.

Gladden walked with one out in the seventh and stole second. He moved to third on Tom Herr’s ground ball and immediately flashed a sign to Kelly. Kelly declined on the first pitch, opting to give Bush a swing. But Gladden, who had been part of a sputtering Twins offense, kept asking.

“I asked for it,” said Gladden. “I hadn’t done anything with the bat and I wanted to contribute. I wasn’t doing it at the plate so I did it with my speed.”

Gladden had bluffed toward the plate on the previous pitch, but Angels’ starter Dan Petry (3-8) did little more than glance.

“With two out I don’t think he was paying much attention to me,” said Gladden, who has stolen home twice this season and is the only Twin to do so since Rod Carew in 1976. “I bluffed the pitch before, trying to get him to balk. He probably figured I wasn’t going.”

-Mark Vancil, Star Tribune 9/26/1988

Gladden took off and successfully stole home. The Twins added some insurance runs in the later innings, including a Kirby Puckett home run, and won the game 6-2.

Frank Viola won his 23rd game of the season by allowing two runs and nine hits over seven innings pitched.

“This one felt good,” said Viola, who had worked 245 innings without an intentional walk. “It was a good day’s work. When I needed to make a pitch I did. It feels good to be able to win when you know you don’t have your best stuff. I really worked for it. Then Danny scored. That was a hell of a play. It was awesome.”

The game was the last road game for the Twins in 1988. After posting a horrible 29-52 record in road games the year before, the Twins ended 1988 with a 44-37 record in away games.

Box

Player of the Game
Frank Viola

Team Name                        G    W    L    T   PCT    GB    RS   RA
Oakland Athletics              156  100   56    0  .641     -   775  602
Minnesota Twins                156   87   69    0  .558  13.0   729  649
Kansas City Royals             155   81   74    0  .523  18.5   684  622
California Angels              157   75   82    0  .478  25.5   694  740
Chicago White Sox              154   67   87    0  .435  32.0   606  736
Texas Rangers                  154   67   87    0  .435  32.0   606  709
Seattle Mariners               155   65   90    0  .419  34.5   637  714

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