Posted at 11:31 PM on April 11, 2006
by Josh Lee
Brad Radke's second start of the year, in Minnesota's home opener against Oakland, went down in a completely different manner than his first. Having apparently come to the decision that giving up a ton of runs in the first inning is so last season, Radke chose instead to give up a ton of runs in the second inning, as well as a bonus homer in the third. Just to make things interesting.
One thing that looked very similar to last week's outing, though, was the flukey outbreak of hitting on the part of the Twins' batters. Maybe they enjoy rising to the challenge that a big deficit presents, or maybe they were inspired by the pregame tribute to Kirby Puckett; who knows? All I know is that they managed to break through in the bottom of the third by doing some very un-Twins-like things, such as getting on base, and advancing runners, and batting those runners in, and hitting home runs with yet more runners on base.
Combine all that with a few nice defensive plays, an insurance homer by Justin "All or Nothing" Morneau, a couple of dingers by the A's Eric Chavez, a couple of runs given up by Jesse Crain to keep things tight, and a near-Guardado-like nailbiter of a save by Joe Nathan, and you have a game that was considerably more entertaining than anything that happened in last weekend's dreary series in Cleveland. If digging yourselves an early hole is what it takes to get the Twins hopping, I'll take it.