Like to see offense-heavy games? Like insanely high scores? How about one-hour innings? Well, this day game with the Twins had a little bit of all of that for your enjoyment.
I’ll say this for the game today, both starting pitchers had relatively terrible outings, with not a ton of “relief” from their relief pitchers.
In the top of the first Baddoo singled to lead things off, Haase drew a walk, but neither of them were able to score. For the bottom of the inning, Peralta seemed to be doing well, going 1-2-3, but the wheels would come off soon enough.
The Tigers drew first blood in the second inning. The Castros had a good thing going as Willi Castro singled, then Harold Castro singled right after him. A Greiner single scored Willi and sent Harold to second. A Baddoo fielder’s choice erased Greiner as a baserunner and advanced Harold to third, then a Derek Hill bunt single that absolutely should not have worked, but did, scored Harold Castro. Grossman walked, but no further runs scored. In the bottom of the inning, while no runs ultimately scored, things started to look a bit shaky for Peralta. Sano walked to lead things off. Astudillo singled. Jeffers walked. Though it could have been worse it was a sign of what was to come.
Both Happ and Peralta had clean 1-2-3 innings, but don’t worry, the game wasn’t going to be over quickly, because here comes the fourth.
A total of 23 batters (11 for the Tigers and 12 for the Twins) came to the plate in the fourth inning. I could give you a complete blow-by-blow of the hour-long fourth inning, but that might actually be a 1000 word article in and of itself, so here’s what happened:
If you can’t read the graphic, here’s a quick rundown: a Baddoo double scored Harold Castro, a Hill single scored Greiner, a Grossman single scored Baddoo. Candelario doubled to score Hill and Grossman, and that chased Twins pitcher Happ from the game, still no outs for the Tigers. Short hit a sac fly to score Haase, who had walked, Willie Castro tripled to score Candelario, and Harold Castro hit a sac fly to score Willi Castro. The Tigers were now leading 10-0.
Of course, this is the Tigers and nothing can go perfectly, so then we went to the bottom of the fourth. Sano homered to lead things off, then three back-to-back singles loaded the bases. That, naturally, is when Jeffers hit a grand slam. The Twins weren’t done yet, but after a Max Kepler hit-by-pitch, Peralta was finished. Kyle Funkhouser gave up two more hits back-to-back, loading the bases again, and Sano was back, singling to score Kepler. The score at the end of the inning, 56 minutes later? 10-6.
Baddoo drew a walk to start the fifth, but was caught stealing, eliminating the Tigers only baserunner of the inning. Derek Holland was on for the Tigers in the bottom of the inning, and Gordon made it to first on an error from Harold Castro. Jeffers walked, and then a Simmons fielder’s choice erased Jeffers, but advanced Gordon to third. Rooker drew a walk, but ultimately the Twins weren’t able to score another run.
The Tigers got back some of their lead in the sixth, as Haase drew yet another walk. Candelario walked after him, and I hope these guys have their step counters on today. Short doubled to score Haase, then Willi Castro hit a sac fly to score Candelario. Greiner, not wanting Haase to be the only catcher scoring runs, hit a double to score Short, and the Tigers were up 13-6. Buck Farmer was the Tigers reliever in the bottom of the inning and had a clean 1-2-3 outing.
The seventh inning was uneventful for both sides as both the Tigers and Twins went 1-2-3.
Minaya, continuing an excellent outing in relief for the Twins, sat the Tigers down in order in the eighth as well. In the bottom of the inning, Max Kepler led things off with a solo home run. Then Rooker homered, and Polanco walked, so the Tigers went to the pen again to Joe Jimenez. Jimenez then gave up a two-run shot to Sano. Astudillo got a double. Then Jeffers hit a two-run home run. That’s the fourth home run this inning, by the way. This game is so stupid. Then, of course, a pinch-hitting Donaldson drew a walk.
10 batters came to the plate for the Twins, so if you’re keeping track, that’s THREE times this game a team has batted around in one game, no matter what version of “batted around” you choose to recognize.
Greiner drew a one-out walk in the top of the ninth, Baddoo struck out, but that was followed by a Hill single. Then Grossman drew a walk to load the bases. Haase doubled to score three runs, because of course he did. Candelario hit what should have been the final out to Rooker, but Rooker dropped the ball (literally) and Candy ended up with an RBI double, scoring Haase. The score was now 17-12.
Gregory Soto was on for the Tigers in the bottom of the ninth, and I’d say the Tigers had this in the bag, but seeing as how the rest of the game had gone, I’m not counting on anything until the last out is made. A walk to Rooker started things out. Then Polanco hit a two-run shot, the seventh home run of the game for the Twins (none for you, Tigers), and this has to be, without a doubt, the most absurd game of baseball I have ever seen in my life. I briefly felt absolutely certain this game would go into extra innings, but no, at long last, Soto closed it out, and the game blessedly ended at just a bit over the 4-hour mark.
Final: Tigers 17, Twins 14