Twins

6/26: Twins Fall to Chris Sale and Red Sox in Fenway Opener, 4-1

The Minnesota Twins fell to the Boston Red Sox 4-1 on Monday night at Fenway Park. The Red Sox were led by their ace Chris Sale, who limited the Twins to only one earned run with nine strikeouts in 6.1 innings. Jose Berrios didn’t have his best performance of the year against the pesky Red Sox, who got to him for four earned runs in 6.1 innings.

“I was a little anxious at first,” Berrios told the Minneapolis Star Tribune. “It’s an awesome experience to pitch here. It was sold out. A lot of fans were rooting for their team.”

Berrios struggled in the first inning, as Mitch Moreland hit his 12th home run off a sinker that truly didn’t sink. The home run marked just the second off Berrios in his last six starts.

“I was leaving the ball almost in the middle of the plate,” Berrios told the St. Paul Pioneer Press. “I figured I couldn’t keep doing that if I wanted to last in the game. I made the adjustment I needed to and I was able to get stronger.”

Despite the loss, Paul Molitor was encouraged with the young pitcher.

“His only mistake was the home run, I thought. He missed his spot on that one,” Molitor told the Star Tribune. “I was proud of how Jose hung in there. He kept us in the game and we battled. It was a good night for him.”  

As a result of the Red Sox brilliant pitching, the Twins were very limited offensively in a sold-out Fenway Park. The Twins mustered just one home run off Sale — a solo shot by catcher Chris Gimenez.

“He’s just got a lot of funk in that delivery, and that slider just dives into right-handers, down and in,” Gimenez told the Star Tribune. “I feel fortunate he hung one.”

In the sixth inning, the Twins had a chance to create some damage with runners in scoring position. Robbie Grossman singled off Sale and Kennys Vargas also had a walk with zero outs. Jorge Polanco was in an important position to bunt, but the umpire ruled him out off a strikeout where he tried to pull his bat back to ensure a ball. The Red Sox were then able to get Gimenez to hit into an inning-ending double play.

“I thought it was a huge call. I’m not sure what Jeff saw. You square around and the pitch is coming at your leg, it’s not that easy to move the bat and get out of the way at the same time,” Molitor told the Star Tribune. “It was an obvious non-attempt from what I saw, and it changed the at-bat. Now he’s got one pitch to try and get the ball down.”

Scott Jordahl

[Star Tribune, Pioneer Press]

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