Minnesota Twins: Eddie Rosario has a rough night as Twins fall to Nationals
By Chris Schad
The Minnesota Twins need more from outfielder Eddie Rosario, but a night filled with mistakes helped cost his team as they fell to the Washington Nationals.
The MInnesota Twins are going to need everything they can get from their outfield in the coming weeks. With Byron Buxton now out for the season while Max Kepler and Jake Cave both nurse nagging injuries, one of the players that is going to fall under the microscope is Eddie Rosario.
As the Twins continue to adjust to life without their starting outfield (although they hope to get Kepler and Cave back before this weekend’s divisional showdown with the Cleveland Indians), Rosario didn’t get off on the right track as he made a key mistake in right field and followed it up with a brutal at-bat in a clutch situation as part of a 6-2 loss to the Washington Nationals on Wednesday night.
After starter Martin Perez allowed two runs to the Nationals in the first inning on RBI singles from Juan Soto and Ryan Zimmerman, he began to settle down and got the first two outs quickly in the third inning after Soto drew a two-out walk. Howie Kendrick would come to the plate next and would hit a ball to Rosario, who was playing in right field as opposed to his normal position in left.
As Rosario went back to grab the ball, it went over his head and Soto would score from first to increase the Nationals lead on Kendrick’s RBI double and Zimmerman would crush a two-run homer to turn a zero to a crooked number on the scoreboard and a 5-0 deficit.
The Twins would fight back the following inning as Jorge Polanco hit a two-run homer for his 21st of the season, but the Twins couldn’t put together a long rally against Stephen Strasburg, who allowed two runs over six innings with four hits, two walks and seven strikeouts.
Meanwhile, the Twins’ bullpen would have a nice outing after Perez slogged through five innings (5 IP, 5 ER, 6 H, 3 BB, 4 K) as Zack Littell and Brusdar Graterol pitched scoreless innings to keep the Nationals at bay.
Minnesota would get another opportunity in the bottom of the eighth inning after Polanco singled and Nelson Cruz walked to lead off the inning. Rosario would have his chance for redemption with two on and nobody out, but former Twin Fernando Rodney would use his aggressiveness against him, keeping the ball down in the zone and forcing a pop up to waste the opportunity.
Rodney would get Willians Astudillo and Ehire Adrianza to fly out to end the inning and Trea Turner launched a solo home run in the top of the ninth to add insurance in a 6-2 victory for Washington.
The Twins will try to move on after a tough night in the field, but it won’t get easier as the Nationals send Patrick Corbin (11-7, 3.16 ERA) to the mound on Thursday night. With the Twins magic number to clinch the American League Central remaining at 12, they’ll activate Kyle Gibson (13-6, 4.58 ERA) off the injured list to make the start with a 6:40 p.m. CT first pitch.