In a perfect world, Byron Buxton would become the first player in the history of the twins to hit homers in the park in consecutive games. Instead, he had to settle for just that on Tuesday – and later used his speed to make another attempt. In that perfect world, the rest
In a perfect world,
In this perfect world, the rest of the Gemini attack should also show a little more about their efforts in the first two games of this four-game battle against the White Sox for first place in the American Central League. Instead, the bats fell silent against rookie right-winger Dane Dunning as morals flared from Rocco Baldeli̵
• Box result
“We didn’t lose tonight because of something that happened to one of the referees,” Baldeli said. “There are some disappointments in some cases, but we certainly need to go out and play better, have better bats, hit balls that are in the zone when we get the chance and perform better and do more stable quality playgrounds. It all comes down to the fact that we need to do a better job. “
• The twins sound in the schedule of the playoffs for 2020.
The loss fell to Minnesota in three games from Chicago, which means that the Twins can not take first place during this series. The magic number of the Twins to secure the port after the season remained at five.
Buxton slammed a drive to the left-center field in the third inning against the White Sox that center player Louis Robert could not catch when trying to jump, and after the ball fell off the wall and flowed from Robert, Chicago had no chance to slow down Buxton.
The Twins’ speedster had to sprint at just 29.2 feet per second during his trip around the bases until he tied the game 1-1 with his ninth homer of the season. That’s pretty shy of the “elite” 30-foot-per-second threshold that Buxton has already surpassed 14 times this season and 322 times in his career. According to Statcast, the ball had a 50 percent chance of being caught, but Robert’s inability to make the game opened the door for Buxton to take full advantage.
Inside #Bomb. #MNTwins pic.twitter.com/xrw7SLMyM1
– Minnesota Twins (@Twins) September 16, 2020
This was Buxton’s third career inside the park, mostly among active players. He later added a single to the fifth and rounded the bases in the wild, a ball and RBI ground, but the rest of the squad combined for just one goal, as the twins never made a serious threat against Dunning. Meanwhile, the White Sox received homers from Tim Anderson and James McCann, as well as a two-seater single from Robert.
“Another show from Byron, in which he shows us things we don’t usually get to see on a baseball field,” Baldeli said. “We know how special his abilities are, and watching him go around the bases, it’s a pleasure to watch him and we see him do things like that all the time. You are never sure what he will do, because he is really capable of almost anything. “
Buxton has four homers in his last seven games. The twins will claim that there should have been five.
In the ninth inning of the Sox 3-1 loss on Monday, Buxton hit a ball in a deep left field that rose above Eloy Jimenez’s glove and rolled against the wall, settling down to the lining of the outer wall. Jimenez immediately gestured to be driven dead, but the disturbing crew initially managed him live, allowing Buxton to bypass the bases for what looked like a homer in the park.
Although Jimenez seemed easy to pick up the ball and pass it inside, the judges ruled on re-examination that the ball was placed under the mat and was thus dead, and Buxton’s homer was canceled on a major double as a result.
“I mean, it looks like he’s probably leaning against the wall,” Baldeli said. “I don’t know. You could probably just bend over and pick up the ball and throw it if you want. But, again, what can any of us do about it? I’m not sure.
“It’s a call for judgment. You just have to live with it one way or another. There’s nothing you can do about it.”
If that call hadn’t been canceled, Buxton would have become only the fifth player in twin history (since the franchise moved in 1961) with multiple parking in the park during the season, joining Tony Oliva (’64), Tom Brunansky. 82), Greg Gagnet (’86) and Steve Lombardozzi (’88).
“I know he didn’t get credit for the first one, but probably something we haven’t seen a ton of,” Baldeli said. “I know I’m not.”
This rollover was just one of several contested plays in the series – inclusive
Baldeli wasn’t sure if the throws were a carryover from the residual disappointments Monday night, when the Twins had trouble with those two calls and blocked the 15 runners during the season. Nevertheless, Gemini needs to reach their full potential as they finally become healthy.
“You’re generally frustrated with calls when you don’t meet your capabilities and expectations,” Baldeli said. “It’s up to us to go out and play better and not have to rely on close conversations to be the deciding factors in these games.”
Do-Hyoung Park covers the Twins for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @dohyoungpark and on Instagram at dohyoung.park.