Twins win on a walk-off bobble

Creative baserunning, botched grounder in ninth cap Twins’ rally.

If the Twins felt they needed to get some breaks to end their losing streak, they got them with two outs in the ninth inning Tuesday night at Target Field.

Like when Eduardo Nunez swerved around Adrian Beltre as he fielded a grounder and slid safely into third without being called for running out of the baseline.

Like when Danny Santana hit a dribbler in front of the mound, and Rangers reliever Joakim Soria forgot all the fielding practice he did in spring training and bobbled the ball. That allowed Nunez to score from third and allowed the Twins to storm the field and celebrate a 4-3 walk-off victory on Soria’s bobble.

A walk-off bobble?

“It was big,” said Nunez, who entered the game in the seventh as a pinch hitter for Chris Parmelee. “We have a lot of confidence [now]. We know it is a tough team, and we know we have to keep battling.”

They did, ending their four-game losing streak. Soria, who was 8-for-8 in save situations coming into the game, took the loss.

Twins righthander Phil Hughes was sharp most of the night and ran his streak to 175 batters faced without giving up a walk.

But he left the game after seven innings trailing 3-2. Former Twins righthander Scott Baker was tabbed, on three days’ rest, to fill in for Yu Darvish, who was scratched because of a sore neck. And Baker was just a little better than Hughes, holding the Twins to two runs over six innings.

The Twins, however, waited until the ninth to rally.

Oswaldo Arcia blasted a double high off the wall in right-center with one out. After Josh Willingham struck out, Nunez singled to right to score Arcia with the tying run and went to second on the throw home.

Kurt Suzuki tapped to third baseman Beltre, and it appeared the game was headed to the 10th inning. But Nunez ran around Beltre as he started to field the ball. Instead of throwing to first, Beltre tried to get Nunez as he slid into third.

“I wasn’t expecting him to tag me,” Nunez said. “I was expecting him to throw to first base.”

Rangers manager Ron Washington ran out to argue that Nunez ran out of the baseline.

Crew chief Jerry Layne said that since Nunez went around Beltre to allow him to field the ball — and not avoid a tag — it was not a baseline violation.

“That’s the key, to avoid being tagged,” Layne said. “[Nunez] has to yield [Beltre] a chance to field the ball. [Nunez] goes around [Beltre] in an attempt to allow him to field the ball. There was never an attempt to make a tag. If [Beltre] would have stuck his glove out to try to make an attempt, we have a different play.”

As Eduardo Escobar batted, Suzuki advanced to second on indifference. Escobar was walked intentionally to load the bases for Santana.

Santana dribbled one in front of Soria, and again the game appeared headed to the 10th. Then came the bobble, and a Twins win.

“You gotta hang in there,” Gardenhire said, “and we did that tonight and we end up getting a chance to win a ballgame and getting a chance to put the ball in play and you end up getting a win.”

  • related content

  • Twins 4, Texas 3

    Up next: 7:10 p.m. today vs. Texas • Target Field • TV: FSN (96.3-FM)

ADVERTISEMENT

New England 2/1/15 5:30 PM
Seattle
Portland 0 Postponed
Brooklyn 0
Sacramento 0 Postponed
New York 0
Philadelphia 19 2nd Qtr
New Orleans 30
Minnesota 19 2nd Qtr
Oklahoma City 25
Orlando 29 2nd Qtr
Memphis 34
Boston 8:00 PM
Utah
Denver 9:30 PM
LA Clippers
Army 42 2nd Half 11:04
American Univ 46
Wright State 53 2nd Half 10:06
Detroit 40
Syracuse 62 2nd Half 7:12
North Carolina 68
Cleveland State 47 2nd Half 5:52
Oakland 50
Delaware State 43 2nd Half 6:32
NC Central 44
High Point 50 2nd Half 7:00
Presbyterian 44
Howard 25 2nd Half
Bethune-Cookman 27
Coppin State 23 1st Half 7:00
NC A&T 32
Nicholls 25 2nd Half 20:00
Northwestern St 41
Hampton 25 2nd Half
SC State 31
Gardner-Webb 18 1st Half 6:53
Campbell 23
MD-Eastern Shore 4 1st Half 14:30
Florida A&M 8
Stephen F Austin 21 1st Half 7:38
Lamar 10
Central Arkansas 20 1st Half 7:46
New Orleans 33
Norfolk State 25 1st Half 4:52
Savannah State 17
TX A&M-CC 14 1st Half 7:20
SE Louisiana 15
Sam Houston St 24 1st Half 11:10
Abilene Christian 9
McNeese State 34 1st Half 4:50
Incarnate Word 27
Milwaukee 5 1st Half 5:34
Valparaiso 30
Alcorn State 7:30 PM
Alabama A&M
Southern U 7:30 PM
Alabama State
Prairie View 8:00 PM
Ark-Pine Bluff
Texas 8:00 PM
Iowa State
Texas Southern 8:00 PM
Miss Valley St
Long Island 85 FINAL
Bryant 88
Central Conn St 51 FINAL
St Francis-NY 49
Fairleigh Dickinson 0 Postponed
Sacred Heart 0
St Francis-PA 87 FINAL
Wagner 74
Delaware State 59 FINAL
NC Central 66
Howard 53 FINAL
Bethune-Cookman 61
Coppin State 49 FINAL
NC A&T 67
Hampton 88 FINAL
SC State 53
Norfolk State 54 FINAL
Savannah State 56
MD-Eastern Shore 54 FINAL
Florida A&M 64
Angelo State 55 FINAL
Abilene Christian 70
Samford 32 FINAL
(25) Chattanooga 49
Prairie View 83 FINAL
Ark-Pine Bluff 66
Alcorn State 58 FINAL
Alabama A&M 55
Texas Southern 63 FINAL
Miss Valley St 52
Southern U 52 2nd Half 0:28
Alabama State 49
(12) Texas A&M 44 2nd Half 9:01
(1) South Carolina 60
Robert Morris 65 2nd Half 2:27
Mount St Marys 44
East Tenn St 64 2nd Half 5:04
Mercer 55
Wofford 47 2nd Half 9:06
Furman 37
Morehead St 61 2nd Half 2:55
Tenn Tech 48
Illinois 43 2nd Half 10:29
Michigan 53
Quinnipiac 0 Postponed
Manhattan 0
Saint Peters 0 Postponed
Rider 0
(18) Miss State 8:00 PM
Auburn
(15) Nebraska 8:00 PM
(20) Iowa
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How optimistic are you about the 2015 Twins?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close