The Minnesota Twins had an exciting 2017 season. Here’s one of our staff’s favorite memories from the season!
The Minnesota Twins had a year with plenty of amazing moments of great team comebacks, amazing moments, dynamic individual performances to choose from – and this isn’t one of them. However for Puckett’s Pond’s Benjamin Chase, this is the most memorable game.
Memorial Day: Houston Astros 16, Minnesota Twins 8
The game started so well for the Minnesota Twins. Ervin Santana went 7 strong innings, allowing 2 runs (1 earned) on 5 hits and 2 walks, striking out 6. The Twins offense chased starter Brad Peacock, scoring 7 runs in the bottom of the 5th inning. Robbie Grossman had a home run and a double. Miguel Sano crushed a home run. Max Kepler had a double and Jorge Polanco had a triple.
The Twins chose to pull Santana after 7 strong innings, as he had thrown 114 pitches. That’s when things went sideways. Before the 8th inning was complete, the Astros had scored 11 runs in the inning, and all of them were on balls just pushing through the infield, nothing really “crushed”. In face, it wasn’t until 5 runs had been scored in the inning already that the Astros even got more than a single. Carlos Beltran closed out the scoring in the inning, crushing a ball down the right field line that stayed fair and drove in 3 runs.
Reliever Drew Rucinski gave up 3 runs in the 9th inning to finish the game, having just been called up from Rochester after the Twins played a 15-inning game against the Rays the day before.
Why it was a big deal to me
For every father, they have a day they get to take their child to their first game. For me, I’m a foster father, and it’s rare that I get the chance to take a child to attend a game. Helping a little guy play t-ball was fun, but not the same as being able to introduce them to the joy of attending a major league game in person.
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After spending months watching minor league games projected onto the big screen so I could write up scouting reports or watching games throughout the night, the kids now had something to relate to. Now when a game is on the TV, they often ask, “Is that the stadium we were at?”
The only player that they remember is actually Brian McCann, who was playing catch with starter Brad Peacock before the game and waved at the crowd where we were sitting with his burly beard, so when he’s been on TV during the playoffs, they immediately recognize him.
As we as fans develop future fans, we don’t always have to see our favorite team win in order to share an amazing experience at a ballpark. That comeback was a once-in-a-lifetime experience as that has never happened in the history of the Astros previously to come back from down 6 runs in the 8th or later, and the Twins bullpen had never in its history given up as many as 14 runs. As they say, any day you go to the ballpark, you could see something that’s never happened before!