Game 81: Rays 8 (47-33), Twins 6 (44-37)

My kids both decided to meltdown at about the same time the Twins bullpen did on Saturday, so I may have been fortunate that I was only half paying attention when the 4-1 lead turned into an 8-4 deficit.

Things looked very good for the Twins early in the game, when Jim Thome put to rest the fears that the Twins would never hit home runs out of Target Field with two solo home runs – just enough to pass Harmon Killebrew on the all-time home run list. Justin Morneau added a two-run home run to make the lead 4-1.

After striking out 10 in seven innings pitched, Liriano came out of the game only to watch his dominant performance go to waste. Gardy, quoted by Joe Christensen, took it upon himself:

“No matter who I went to, it seemed to be the wrong move today, and I’ll take that one on myself,” Gardenhire said.

WPA Stars of the Game
1. Matt Joyce
2. Francisco Liriano
3. Carl Crawford

Standings (through Saturday)
1. Det 43-36, 360-356, –
2. Min 44-37, 378-328, –
3. Chi 41-38, 341-347, 1.0
4. KC 36-45, 361-389, 8.0
5. Cle 32-48, 330-400, 11.5


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