Postgame: Twins show their faith in Plouffe
- Blog Post by: Phil Miller
- May 1, 2014 - 12:00 AM
Three spare thoughts from the Twins' 6-4 loss to the Dodgers on Wednesday:
A WORTHWHILE CHANCE: Trevor Plouffe delivered exactly what the Twins were hoping for, a line shot that he hammered into the left-field corner, driving home a couple of runs. Only drawback: It came two innings too late. Plouffe's shot came in the ninth inning, when the Twins were down to their final out, rather than in the seventh, when the end game might have been different. Ron Gardenhire said giving Plouffe the green light on a 3-0 count with the bases loaded was an easy call -- "He can backspin a fastball. That's what he's supposed to do, and he took a rip there" -- and just didn't work out this time, with Plouffe popping up to short. That's another reflection of how much faith the Twins have in Plouffe's progress this season, though. Gardenhire has made him the No. 3 hitter in the lineup, and is willing to take chances with him.
PLAY OF THE MONTH: You'll undoubtedly see Brian Dozier on TV a few times in the next day or two, after he made one of the best defensive plays of the season in the fifth inning. Adrian Gonzalez hit a hot smash at first baseman Joe Mauer, but it took a bad hop on the dirt just before reaching him. The ball bounced off Mauer and rolled away, but Dozier raced over and dove for it. With no time to catch the ball, however, Dozier simply scooped it toward first base -- all while horizontal to the ground -- where Kyle Gibson was stretching for the "throw." It was an acrobatic play that called for athleticism, hustle and instincts, and Dozer displayed all three.
WET BUT PLAYABLE: The Twins and Dodgers played in a light-but-steady rain for almost two hours on Wednesday, which nobody enjoys, not players, umpires or fans. But the teams much prefer the bad weather to having to make up the game later in the year. That's why, though forecasts for Thursday's doubleheader aren't much better, the Twins will do everything they can to play both games. The Dodgers, who aren't scheduled to return to Minnesota this year, undoubtedly agree. "The team that has to fly back in, that's not normally very much fun," said Twins manager Ron Gardenhire. "That's terrible, to fly into a city for one game and then get right back on the plane. It's a whirlwind. That's not much fun."
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