Twins 2, Brewers 0: A good old-fashioned pitching duel
Wow! It was fun.
In one of the most dominant performances in recent throwing history for the Twins, Minnesota was able to hold the Milwaukee Brewers to three baserunners and a single lone shot, while also closing in on a franchise record. and racking up 17 strikeouts combined.
It was an inexplicable start. Corbin Burnes and Jose Berrios were both perfect in four innings, and both hit a batsman in an otherwise perfect fifth. Burnes was exactly as advertised, serving high-90s with brisk movement and rendering the Twin range relatively powerless.
Berrios was just as good, and a little better – he was shot before the seventh, having pitched six innings without a hitting and hitting 12 punches. He will enter the home opener at Target Field with an immaculate WHIP and only a Keston Hiura HBP against his record.
It was only the seventh that Burnes (6.1 IP, 11 K) was finally beaten. Byron Buxton drove one down the deep center to the right for a solo shot, his second homer of the year and an early stoppage of his MVP World Revenge Tour.
It’s not often that you’ll see hitterless duels of up to six – in fact, this is the first time that a play with this double dominance has occurred.
– Statistics by STATS (@StatsBySTATS) April 4, 2021
Buxton’s explosion was one of four total hits for the Twins, who added insurance in the eighth; Nelson Cruz extended the inning with a hit single, then watched Andrelton Simmons score in front of him on an RBI shot for Luis Arraez.
Ultimately, Milwaukee would break the no-hitter; Taylor Rogers hit the side after Berrios was called out, but Tyler Duffey tied the points on base when Omar Narvaez hit sharply on the right in the eighth. The impact was slight; he took out Daniel Vogelbach and flew Billy McKinney to end the threat.
Things got a little weird in the ninth; with two outs, a fake bullet ricocheted off Ryan Jeffers upper thigh, only to pierce home plate umpire CB Bucknor in the throat; after being examined by a team coach he was allowed to stay in the game, to watch in surprise as the team coach suddenly collapsed.
Eventually he was helped to return to the dugout – as was Christian Yelich, who fouled to end the game.
It was an encouraging playoff night victory on several fronts; Alex Colome was ninth net after making a save on Thursday, Taylor Rogers looks like his old self to start the year, and Jose Berrios and Byron Buxton both started their 2021 seasons very, very strong.
SP Jose Berrios (6 PI, 0 H, 0 ER, 0 BB, 12 K)
RP Taylor Rogers / Tyler Duffey / Alex Colome (3 IP, 1 H, 0 ER, 1 BB, 5 K)
CF Byron Buxton (1 for 4, HR)
NO DUDS! THE TWINS WIN! THE TWINS WIN!
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