Twins fall to Braves in 10 innings

  • Article by: PHIL MILLER , Star Tribune
  • Updated: May 22, 2013 - 8:24 AM

Glen Perkins gave up a game-tying homer in the ninth, and the Braves won it in the 10th.

 

– It’s the context that mattered, the timing that hurt the worst. It’s never fun to blow a save, but those mishaps are inevitable.

No, what made Evan Gattis’ game-tying ninth-inning home run so much more wrenching was when it came: in the midst of a losing streak, and after a heartening, turn-things-around Twins rally.

“We’ve been struggling, but the guys fought back and got a lead,” Twins closer Glen Perkins grumbled, upset with himself after the Braves claimed a 5-4 victory in the 10th inning Tuesday. “It’s just bad timing.”

Just about the worst, actually. The Twins waited out a rain delay, overcame two different Atlanta leads, and took their first lead since Friday by putting three hits and a walk together in the eighth inning. Trevor Plouffe and Ryan Doumit were about to be clutch-hit heroes, and the Twins’ losing streak was about to die after six games.

Instead, the streak is at seven, the last-place hole is that much deeper, Perkins is no longer perfect, and Plouffe was in a daze, having collided with Dan Uggla’s knee while breaking up a double play in the 10th. Manager Ron Gardenhire said Plouffe was undergoing tests after the game, and his condition was not known.

Gattis tied the score with his third career pinch-hit home run, pouncing on an 0-1 slider from Perkins that didn’t dive below the strike zone and smacking it six rows deep into the left field stands.

“It’s a pitch I want below the zone and I didn’t get it there,” the closer said after his eight-save streak was broken with the two-out homer. “You’ve got to make good pitches. That guy is up there to do one thing, and he did it.”

The Twins got two quick outs in the 10th, too, but once again couldn’t close out the inning. Jason Heyward lined a rope to the center field wall for a double off Brian Duensing, and after an intentional walk to Justin Upton, Duensing went to a full count on Freddie Freeman. His next pitch broke the cleanup hitter’s bat, but Freeman managed to loop the ball into the outfield, falling for a hit and scoring the winning run.

“We gave just about everything we had,” said Gardenhire, whose team fell to 1-5 in extra innings. “[Gattis] hit a slider coming down and in and put it in the seats. They come up with a bloop there at the end and wind up beating us. ... But our bullpen did a super job of shutting them down.”

They did, actually, until the very end. When a short rain delay in the third inning grew to more than an hour long because a bank of lights briefly went out and had to brighten again, Gardenhire decided not to risk starter Mike Pelfrey’s reconstructed elbow by sending him back out. Anthony Swarzak was handed the ball, and he threw four strong innings, striking out three and allowing only a Brian McCann solo home run. Casey Fien and Jared Burton each retired the Braves in order for an inning, striking out two apiece.

Meanwhile, the Twins did something that’s been eluding them lately — they hit with runners in scoring position, at least for one seemingly decisive eighth-inning rally. After Joe Mauer singled and Josh Willingham walked, Plouffe hit a one-out single to right, bringing home Mauer with the tying run. Doumit, playing right field for the first time in more than a year, followed with a line drive of his own, scoring pinch-runner Brian Dozier.

Suddenly, the Twins had their first lead in four days.

But it didn’t last.

One thing that did last: the Twins’ habit of allowing first-inning runs. Pelfrey gave up an RBI double to Freeman and a run-scoring single to McCann in the first inning, the ninth time in the past 17 games that a Twins opponent has scored in the first. It brings the Twins’ total of first-inning runs allowed to 49, the most in the major leagues.

Braves starter Tim Hudson wasn’t particularly sharp, either; he hit Justin Morneau with a pitch in the second inning, then watched him score on a Pedro Florimon single. An inning later, Mauer singled just as the rain began pouring; an hour later, Willingham and Morneau also singled, driving him home to tie the score.

 

  • related content

  • Twins call up Colabello, put Plouffe on disabled list

    Wednesday May 22, 2013

    Former Can-Am League star was leading International League in home runs with 12

  • Photo gallery: Atlanta 5, Twins 4 (10)

    Wednesday May 22, 2013

    The Twins played the Atlanta Braves in Atlanta, Monday evening.

  • Twins notes: Deduno to make start vs. Tigers

    Wednesday May 22, 2013

    When the Twins face the Tigers on Friday, Samuel Deduno will be the starter

  • Nick Blackburn: 'Unbelievable how devastating' tornado was

    Tuesday May 21, 2013

    Twins pitcher Nick Blackburn was at home with his family during Monday's storm that spawned several twisters in Oklahoma

  • Tuesday's Twins-Atlanta game recap

    Wednesday May 22, 2013

    GAME RECAPImpact playerEvan Gattis, BravesBraves were down to their final out against a reliever who had not blown a save...

  • Minnesota Twins starting pitcher Mike Pelfrey (37) works against the A...

  • Justin Morneau scored on an RBI single by Pedro Florimon during the second inning.

  • Ryan Doumit delivered a go-ahead single for the Twins in the eighth inning. The Braves tied it on a pinch-hit homer in the ninth.

  • Freddie Freeman was mobbed by his teammates after hitting a game-winning RBI single in the 10th inning off Brian Duensing. He retired the first two batters of the inning before running into trouble.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions

ADVERTISEMENT

New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Seattle
Minnesota 94 FINAL
Philadelphia 103
Houston 93 FINAL
Boston 87
Portland 99 FINAL
Atlanta 105
Sacramento 90 FINAL
Cleveland 101
Toronto 127 FINAL
Brooklyn 122
Dallas 93 FINAL
Miami 72
LA Clippers 103 FINAL
New Orleans 108
Golden State 100 FINAL
Utah 110
Chicago 93 FINAL
Phoenix 99
Pittsburgh 2 FINAL(OT)
New Jersey 1
St. Louis 3 FINAL(SO)
Carolina 2
Nashville 0 FINAL
Colorado 3
Buffalo 2 FINAL
Vancouver 5
Chicago 4 FINAL
Anaheim 1
Harvard 75 FINAL
Princeton 72
Quinnipiac 57 FINAL
Canisius 63
Brown 49 FINAL
Cornell 57
Siena 79 FINAL
Manhattan 87
Marist 65 FINAL
Niagara 61
Dartmouth 51 FINAL
Penn 58
Oregon 68 FINAL
Arizona State 67
Yale 63 FINAL
Columbia 59
Monmouth 60 FINAL
Fairfield 59
IUPUI 59 FINAL
Western Ill 63
Oregon State 34 FINAL
Arizona 57
Kent State 55 FINAL
Buffalo 80
Canisius 75 FINAL
Monmouth 58
Butler 67 FINAL
Providence 59
Cornell 65 FINAL
Brown 52
Columbia 47 FINAL
Yale 55
Coll of Charleston 47 FINAL
Drexel 64
Penn 55 FINAL
Dartmouth 39
Elon 60 FINAL
James Madison 89
(19) Princeton 96 FINAL
Harvard 46
(9) Florida State 82 FINAL
Georgia Tech 62
Quinnipiac 87 FINAL
Siena 62
Richmond 54 FINAL
Rhode Island 50
Loyola-Chicago 58 FINAL
Southern Ill 64
Georgetown 52 FINAL
DePaul 93
Villanova 75 FINAL
Marquette 59
Wichita State 70 FINAL
Northern Iowa 51
Xavier 65 FINAL
Creighton 74
Bradley 58 FINAL
Illinois State 55
Missouri State 89 FINAL
Drake 94
Arizona 48 FINAL
Utah 62
(11) Arizona State 68 FINAL
Colorado 60

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How should Timberwolves fans greet Kevin Love on Saturday?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close