Hey, did you guys hear that the NFL lockout ended? Because that's basically the only good news Minnesota sports fans got on Monday.
As for the baseball team? Let's just try to pretend that Monday night never happened. Texas beat Minnesota by a very NFL-like score of 20-6...and sadly for Twins fans, the game wasn't even that close.
Just how bad was it for Twins pitching? The starter, Nick Blackburn, gave up eleven hits and nine runs in just 2 2/3 innings. Then Jose Mijares got shelled for five runs in only 2/3 of an inning. And then Chuck James gave up four runs in just one inning of work. And then...well, you get the idea. The Rangers scored at least three runs in the first five innings. The score was 18-1 with four innings left to play.
The defense didn't do the atrocious pitching staff any favors either. The Twins committed three errors that led to four unearned runs from Texas. The Rangers committed four errors of their own, but those types of miscues tend to hurt a lot less when you're putting up 20 runs on offense.
Rangers starter Derek Holland went six innings for Texas and fared much, much better than the Twins staff, giving up only one unearned run. The Twins touched the Texas bullpen for five meaningless runs in the last three innings, well after the outcome had been decided.
The drubbing of the Twins was truly a team effort for Texas. Eight different Rangers knocked in at least one run, and eight different Rangers had multi-hit games. Remarkably, the only two of the Rangers' 27 hits were home runs. The 27 hits allowed was an all-time Twins franchise worst, and the 20 runs allowed was the second worst ever. The Rangers' 43 total bases on Monday night was the most by any team in the major leagues this season. But you probably had already assumed most of that.
At least we got to see Michael Cuddyer come on to pitch the 8th inning! No, we're not kidding. Cuddyer, the Twins' only All-Star, had to come to the mound to stop the slaughter of the normal pitching staff. And guess what? He didn't allow a run!
The Twins will try to have as few nightmares as possible about this game as they try to even up the series tomorrow night in Arlington. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05 PM. Hey, it can't be any worse than it was on Monday...right?