The Minnesota Twins were looking to bounce back from an effort last night, that saw them show very little offense against a Tampa Bay Rays lineup that has played that role so well. With David Price going against Phil Hughes in tonight’s matchup, it was a face off of two clubs aces. For the Twins however, offense was once again in short supply.
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Tampa Bay broke open the scoring at Target Field early. In the top of the second inning, Jose Molina drove in the first run of the game. On a single to right, James Loney was able to come around and plate the game’s first run.
Following up the Molina single, Sean Rodriguez, one of the Rays many do it all utility men, homered to left on a 1-0 pitch. With the home run, the Rays also scored Molina and found themselves in command with a 3-0 lead.
Both the Twins and Rays would then watch their offenses fall by the wayside until the seventh inning. It was the Rays once again putting runs on the board in the top of the seventh inning. Molina was able to drive in his second run of the game on a fielder’s choice to the Twins Brian Dozier. Logan Forsythe came across the plate for Tampa Bay, giving them a four run lead.
Much like the second inning, Rodriguez followed up the Molina RBI with one of his own. A single plated Yunel Escobar and the Rays now found themselves heavily in command with a 5-0 lead.
The Twins lone run came on a Kurt Suzuki single in the bottom of the ninth, driving in Dozier. However, that was all Minnesota could muster as they fell 5-1.
David Price went eight shutout innings while striking out nine Twins batters on the evening. Hughes was hurt by the big fly early, and ended up surrendering five runs over seven innings for the Twins.
Minnesota once again finds themselves in the midst of an offensive slump, scoring only three runs over the last two games. In a series that start a vital set of games in shaping the second half of the season, the Twins have struggled to show up.
Once again tonight, the Twins weren’t able to get anyone through the game with a multi hit performance. The lineup could strongly use Joe Mauer‘s bat back in the middle somewhere, and it sounds as if he is making progress. Also of note, Ron Gardenhire went away from both Josh Willingham and Oswaldo Arcia in the middle of the lineup tonight.
Check out the full box score for tonight’s game in regards to a more detailed set of player performances.