I don’t blame you if you’ve never heard of Randy Dobnak before. Honestly, the parade of pitchers emerging from the Twins’ bullpen after him all came with names more reminiscent of a random-name-generator than any baseball players I can say I’m familiar with. But then I’m sure Twins fans feel similarly about Scott Barlow, Gabe Speier, and Randy Rosario. And, like many young, unknown pitchers before him, Randy Dobnak shut down the Royals as if he were among the best pitchers in all of baseball. And, of course, his bullpen backed him up by not allowing a single earned run (though they did allow two unearned runs.)
Eric Skoglund didn’t have a bad night on the mound, at least not by his standards. But it wasn’t particularly good, either. In the end he only allowed two runs over four innings - which lowered his ERA to 7.50 - but he didn’t strike out a single batter and Twins hitters were barreling baseballs off of him the entire time. He simply got lucky that they were hitting them at defenders.
The Royals offense didn’t do much. In a lot of ways it’s kind of surprising they managed to score any of their runs. Two of the RBIs came off weak groundballs - a single by Hunter Dozier which saw him thrown out at second trying to stretch into a double and a groundout by Alex Gordon. In more positive news, Ryan McBroom did have three hits for the first time in his career. Adalberto Mondesi also stole a pair of bases to become the first hitter in the modern era to hit 10 triples and steal 40 bases in fewer than 475 plate appearances.
The Twins magic number has dwindled to five. The Royals have been eliminated since what seems like April. The Royals still have two games in this series to try to play spoiler and eke out a split. Glenn Sparkman will take the mound tomorrow against Jose Berrios and you’ll forgive the Twins if they aren’t exactly shaking in their cleats.