How big was Tuesday’s 5-0 victory over the Angels for the Twins?
“We needed a win bad,” Josh Willingham said. “We needed something to jumpstart us. Hopefully that will get us going, and we can pitch the ball well tomorrow. Scoring five runs is good. You need to win when you score five runs, and we did tonight.”
Willingham touches on a good point. The Twins have scored five or more runs 11 times, but they’re only 7-4 in those games.
* Besides going 2-for-4 with a walk and his first career RBI, Brian Dozier had another terrific game at shortstop. He made eight plays, and I circled two on my scorecard. His sliding stop in the hole and strong throw to get Albert Pujols in the sixth inning was the big highlight.
“He definitely took away a couple base hits for me, so that really helped me get back on the mound and just continue what I was doing,” Twins pitcher Scott Diamond said.
Added Manager Gardenhire: “[Dozier's] got quick feet and quick hands, which is kind of what we saw in spring training. Like I said, I’ve liked the kid for a couple years, so it’s nice to have him here with a smile on his face and making the plays. Obviously, we needed a little spark, and he’s been able to come here and play pretty good for us.”
* The Angels continue to struggle against pitchers they’re facing for the first time, and Diamond continued that trend.
“He pitched a terrific game,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. “... He had good late life, a little cut at times, good break on his breaking ball. We didn’t have too many good looks at him.”
* On Wednesday, it’s Carl Pavano’s turn. He’s pitched at least six innings in all six of his starts. The Angels counter with Ervin Santana, who is 0-6, with a 5.59 ERA, but it’s worth nothing that the Angels have been shut out in five of those games.