Three short notes before the Twins take a mid-homestand day off:
— The Twins sounded more disbelieving than frustrated after Sunday’s loss, like they couldn’t be sure what happened. After all, they won 10-1 on Friday, then took a 5-0 lead on Saturday. They had won eight of their previous 10 home games before this series, so they were riding a little momentum. All of that stopped once Alex Rodriguez started clubbing home runs, three of them on Saturday, the last one tying the game in the ninth on Saturday. Now? “We’re trying to find a way to continue to play well at home and win games,” Paul Molitor said. “That’s the perspective.” Toronto lost on Sunday, so the Twins still hold a three-game cushion for the final wild card spot in the American League, but the Royals, who acquired All-Star pitcher Johnny Cueto on Sunday, have now pulled 7 1/2 games in front in the AL Central, their biggest lead of the year.
— Torii Hunter and Trevor Plouffe drove in the Twins’ runs on Sunday, continuing what is shaping up as a decent race to be the Twins’ RBI leader. Plouffe, who led the team last season with 80, now has 55 RBIs this season, the same number as Brian Dozier. Hunter has 54, making it a three-man race, with Joe Mauer trailing with 43. Hunter, by the way, has led the Twins in RBIs three times — from 2002-04 — while Mauer, oddly, never has, not even in his MVP season.
— Ryan O’Rourke surrendered a tremendous home run to Stephen Drew, capping New York’s six-run sixth inning and breaking his personal scoreless streak. O’Rourke had not allowed a run in his first six innings of major-league work, his 0.00 ERA making it look like a mismatch when Drew stepped in with his .186 batting average. Shows you how you can never predict baseball. Now O’Rourke, who pitched a scoreless seventh inning, too, owns a 1.23 ERA. By the way, he was trying to rob home runs during batting practice on Saturday, making some leaping attempts. It was fun, he said Sunday, but he realized he should probably be a little more careful out there. “I really need to stay on my feet,” he said with a laugh.