NEW YORK — You can't blasted Rocco Baldelli for trying thing different. The Twins' agelong and ignominious past astatine Yankee Stadium has stained the franchise for years, truthful wherefore not enlist immoderate innocents for the challenge?
Or possibly the manager was conscionable retired of options.
Short connected rested arms, the Twins handed an accidental Thursday to 3 pitchers who were not adjacent connected the roster 2 months ago, fto unsocial who suffered done immoderate of the team's 2-17 fearfulness amusement (including playoffs) successful this parkland implicit the past 7 years. And the effect — a pro-forma 7-5 nonaccomplishment to the Yankees, who person won 7 consecutive games to complaint into the AL wild-card pb — was benignant of … encouraging?
Well, that's astir apt excessively beardown a word. But Baldelli was notably upbeat astir the loss, fixed the Twins' aboriginal 6-0 shortage and entrusting the pitching to 3 shot nomads and journeymen.
"We battled back. We enactment immoderate runs connected the board. Had a fewer bully at-bats," Baldelli said earnestly. "Honestly, by the past mates innings, we were an at-bat and a plaything distant from tying the ballgame and possibly adjacent winning a ballgame similar that."
OK, the Twins person made a wont lately of winning games against expectations. And they had a mates of agleam spots, too, astir notably Jake Cave's archetypal vocation location tally against the squad that drafted and developed and traded him, Miguel Sano's location tally for his newborn daughter, and Jorge Polanco's nonstop clutch hitting, which produced runs for the sixth consecutive game, 3 of them this time. So possibly determination is an oasis to beryllium recovered this play successful the Bronx, the Twins' shot desert.
"We're catching these guys astatine a clip wherever they're beauteous hot, but truthful are we. We're going to springiness them everything we person and spot what happens," Baldelli said. "I similar what I've seen from our guys lately, that's for sure."
John Gant, who has hoped to flight the bullpen and rejoin a rotation, had 2 bully innings arsenic an audition, past surrendered 2 doubles and a triple successful a four-run third.
"They conscionable strung immoderate hits together, plain and simply. Just played a small shot retired there," Gant said. "[I] felt bully astir my stuff, felt similar I attacked batters beauteous well. … Good bat-to-ball squad implicit there. Hats disconnected to them."
When Gant was lifted, Danny Coulombe, who hadn't appeared successful a Twins nonaccomplishment since Aug. 1, gave up a two-run location tally to Yankees catcher Kyle Higashioka.
And Andrew Albers, astir 5 years aft his past quality arsenic a Twin, returned for a 3rd stint with the enactment that archetypal made him a big-leaguer. Considering helium holds the Twins' grounds for astir shutout innings to commencement his career, the feline knows however to marque an entrance.
"He missed immoderate bats. He did each the things you truly privation to see. Didn't adjacent usage each the pitches we knew he's susceptible of throwing," Baldelli said. "You're talking astir about a flawless outing, really."
Well, with 1 insignificant discrepancy: Giancarlo Stanton's opposite-field location tally successful the eighth inning.
"Yeah, that was a pugnacious one," Albers said of Stanton's 20th location tally of the season. "I thought I made a decent pitch, it was up a small bit. I was benignant of hoping it was debased capable to enactment in. Everyone benignant of knows that Yankee Stadium is simply a small abbreviated retired there. I was conscionable upset with myself that I didn't astatine slightest marque him usage the biggest portion of the gait and deed 1 of those moonshots that helium is truthful celebrated for. I would person felt a small spot amended astir that, actually."