CLEVELAND – How bad did Eddie Rosario feel on Saturday?
“Pretty bad,” Rosario said.
A sinus infection and sore throat forced Rosario out of the starting lineup on Saturday. But on Sunday he felt much better.
And it showed.
Rosario had one of his best all-around games to help the Twins beat Cleveland 4-0 and complete a three-game sweep. He was 3-for-4 with a home run and three runs scored as he pushed his batting average to .280.
He made an impact on the base paths in the second inning when he scored from first on Jason Castro’s double. Rosario read the ball off the bat and was past second base when it landed just out of Austin Jackson’s reach
“I stopped before he got to the ball,” Rosario said. “When I saw it hit the ground I started running.”
Rosario said he felt he had enough time scramble back to first if Jackson made the play because momentum would have delayed his throw.
Rosario also made a mid-route adjustment to haul in Jason Kipnis’ drive to left in the seventh inning. Rosario sprinted back to the wall and was turned to his right as he made the catch over his left shoulder.
“I thought Rosie’s play over the shoulder was beautiful,” Twins manager Paul Molitor said. “He made it look somewhat easy, but that was a really tough catch.”
Castro makes his point
The right touch is needed when a catcher engages the home plate umpire about strike calls. And Castro has gotten close to the edge without going over it.
Several times this season, Castro has voiced his displeasure when he’s been called out on strikes. The latest example was Saturday in the fourth inning when he took on home plate umpire Larry Vanover in a spirited discussion. Several Twins had problems with Vanover, who had a run of seven strikeouts that were all called third strikes.
After speaking to Vanover for several seconds, Castro headed for the dugout.
Since Castro is a catcher, it’s doubly important that he choose his words carefully because it could come back to bite him when he’s trying to frame pitches for his staff.
So using words like “you,” or “you’re” or four-letter words other than “ball” could get him in trouble on multiple levels.
“As long as you’re not crossing the line and being egregious in the things you say, you’re generally pretty safe,” Castro said. “I can definitely voice my opinion without crossing that line.”
Molitor wasn’t so sure on Saturday after watching Castro jaw with Vanover. When Molitor brought Eddie Rosario off the bench to play left field in the ninth inning, he moved Chris Gimenez from left field to first base.
For a reason.
“I wanted to keep him in the game when I made the change to bring Rosario in,” Molitor said, “just because I wasn’t sure if Castro was going to make it through nine. I had to keep my backup catcher in the game.”
Castro let his bat speak on his behalf on Sunday. He was 2-for-4 with two doubles and three RBI.
• With relievers Taylor Rogers and Tyler Duffey unavailable Sunday because of usage, Molitor turned to lefthander Buddy Boshers, who provided two shutout innings. “We were a little short out there and he took care of us,” Molitor said.
• Outfielder Brent Rooker, the 35th overall pick in the June 12 draft, had a big night Saturday in his third game for the Twins’ rookie league team in Elizabethton, Tenn. Rooker, playing left field, went 4-for-5 with two RBI and his first professional home run.