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Twins 4, Astros 2: Astros Fall To Twins Late

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Despite 9 hits (including 2 home runs) and 3 walks, the scoring was hard to come by tonight.

Bob Levey

Do you like games where pitchers throw a lot of pitches?  Do you find it riveting when teams get lots of guys on base, but very few of them actually get to score?  Is a game that lasts longer than the ESPY broadcast right up your alley?  Then this was the game for you!

Coming off a great series win against our in state rivals, the Astros started a new series against the Minnesota Twins.  Brad Peacock got the start, even though in his last 3 times out he has pitched a total of 9 innings, giving up 16 hits and 16 earned runs.  Pre-game reports said that Peacock was encouraged by his bullpen sessions, although that has been the report the last 2 games as well.  His outing was quite a mixed bag.   He showed some of the same control issues, but he got a lot of swinging strikes on his 4 seam fastball in the early going, and in later innings on his slider.  He allowed a lot of runners, but didn't allow a lot of them to score.   The game looked like it was going to get out of hand right from the start.   Ten pitches into the first inning, the bases were loaded with no outs.  Peacock was able to pitch out of that jam, only allowing 1 run on a fielders choice.   Even with all the traffic on the bases, he only gave up 1 other run on a bad pickoff attempt at first base in the fourth.   He came out of the game after the fifth with a final line of 5 IP, 7 hits, and 2 runs (1 earned) on 115 pitches.

On the other side, Twins pitcher Tommy Milone was pitching in his first start since coming over in a trade from Oakland.  He allowed quite a few base runners also, and was able to work out of those jams.   The only thing he couldn't work out of was the home run ball.  Jose Altuve hit a monster solo homer onto the tracks in left field in the first inning, and Chris Carter continued his power surge with another 1-run shot off the wall above the Crawford Boxes.  Carter's homer got Peacock off the hook, making the score 2-2 headed into the 6th.

Jake Buchanan relieved Peacock, and had a relatively uneventful 6th and 7th innings.   In the top of the 8th, Trevor Plouffe singled and made it to 2nd on a passed ball.   With two outs, Chris Parmelee singled to right field, and Robbie Grossman cut down Plouffe at home with a perfect throw (along with a great tag by Jason Castro) to end the inning and keep the game tied.

Josh Fields came in for the 9th and got 2 outs, but also walked Jordan Schafer and Brian Dozier.  Joe Mauer hit a single to left to score Schafer.   Domingo Santana held the ball in the outfield, which allowed Dozier to score to make it 4-2, which ended up being the final.

On the bright side, Buchanan pitched 3 scoreless innings in relief, coming off his last appearance in the marathon Phillies game last week, where he pitched 3.2 solid innings.   Also, Jake Marisnick seems to be getting more comfortable at the plate, and had a 4-4 night tonight.   The Astros try to stop this mini losing streak tomorrow night against the Twins when Collin McHugh takes the mound.