Apr 032011

The Minnesota Twins took the final game of the season opening series from the Toronto Blue Jays 4 runs to 3. It wasn’t easy. The Twins picked up where they left off the previous 2 games; helpless against Jay’s starting pitching. Brett Cecil struck out the entire side in the top of the first, not even needing help from any of his teammates other than the catcher to take out the Twins top batters. Danny Valencia got it done in the 3rd though, giving the Twins their first lead of the season with a solo home run. Tsuyoshi Nishioka had shown his ability with the glove by helping turn a double play twice by the time the Twins were in the field in the fourth. That made it a real bummer when he booted a grounder to allow the tying run. But redemption would be had at the plate the next inning. With the first two batters reaching on walks Drew Butera laid down a perfect bunt to load the bases. Matt Tolbert then got an RBI single but Valencia was thrown out at the plate. It was now time for Nishioka to make up for his error in the field by getting his first RBI as a Twin and giving the Twins a nice 3 to 1 lead.

Nick Blackburn

This was a classic Twins victory led by superb pitching. Nick Blackburn pitched a heck of a game, only giving up 1 earned run on a Jose Bautista home run and 2 runs total. Matt Capps came into a bad situation in the bottom of the 7th with 2 on and no outs but got out of it, including the extremely dangerous Bautista. Glen Perkins was one, two, three in the 8th including a strike out of Edwin Encarnacion. Now it was up to Nathan in the 9th. With the score now 4 to 2 thanks to Denard Span taking former Twin Jon Rauch way deep in the top of the ninth Joe has a nice shot at save number 248. 30 pitches later it was quite interesting. Nathan had now walked the bases loaded with 2 outs with Adam Lind at the plate. Lind bounced the first pitch to first for the final out. Twins win. Now off to New York to face a team that always gives the Twins a hard time, the Yankees.

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