MLB

MLB: Royce Lewis hits two home runs as Twins beat Blue Jays to end 18-game playoff skid

By Sports Desk October 03, 2023

Rookie Royce Lewis hit two home runs in his return from injury, Pablo Lopez pitched effectively into the sixth inning and the Minnesota Twins beat the Toronto Blue Jays 3-1 Tuesday in their wild card series opener.

The win snapped Minnesota’s 18-game postseason losing streak, the longest in MLB history, as the Twins won their first playoff game since 2004.  

Lewis, who had been sidelined for the last two weeks with a strained left hamstring, went deep off Toronto starter Kevin Gausman in each of his first two career postseason at-bats and was responsible for all three of Minnesota’s runs.

Lopez scattered five hits and two walks over 5 2/3 innings to earn the victory in his second career playoff start.

Three relievers worked 2 1/3 innings before Jhoan Duran got the final three outs to secure Minnesota’s first home postseason win since Game 1 of the 2002 ALCS at the Metrodome.

Kevin Kiermaier drove in Bo Bichette with a sixth-inning single for Toronto’s only run.

The Twins will look to win their first postseason series since 2002 on Wednesday when they send veteran Sonny Gray to the mound. Former Twin Jose Berrios is slated to start Game 2 for Toronto.

 

Diamondbacks chase Burnes, rally by Brewers

Corbin Carroll, Ketel Marte and Gabriel Moreno each hit home runs off Corbin Burnes, and the Arizona Diamondbacks rallied to take Game 1 of their wild card series against the Milwaukee Brewers, 6-3.

Carlos Santana singled in Christian Yelich in the first inning, and Tyrone Taylor hit a two-run homer in the second to give Milwaukee a 3-0 lead.

The D-backs responded with home runs by Carroll and Marte in the third to tie the game, then took the lead on Moreno’s solo shot in the fourth. Christian Walker’s two-run double in the ninth provided insurance for Paul Sewald, who earned his first career postseason save.

Burnes needed 92 pitches to get through four innings, allowing four runs, five hits and two walks.

Arizona starter Brandon Pfaadt was chased in the third inning, but six pitchers from the Diamondbacks’ bullpen combined to close the game with 6 1/3 scoreless innings.

 

Wheeler stifles Marlins in Phillies’ win

Zack Wheeler turned in a stellar start and Jose Alvarado preserved the lead with a key strikeout to lead the Philadelphia Phillies to a 4-1 victory over the Miami Marlins in their wild-card opener.

Wheeler limited Miami to one run and five hits over 6 2/3 innings without a walk and eight strikeouts.

Alvarado fanned Yuli Gurriel with two runners on in the seventh to end Miami’s threat. He retired two batters in the eighth before Jeff Hoffman got the third out.

Craig Kimbrel pitched the ninth to seal the win.

Alec Bohm’s RBI double in the third opened the scoring and Bryson Stott delivered an RBI single in the fourth for a 2-0 lead.

Cristian Pache’s single later in the inning extended the lead and Nick Castellanos doubled home Philadelphia’s fourth run in the eighth.

The Phillies will try to book a return trip to the NLDS with a win in Game 2 on Wednesday.

 

Rangers blank sloppy Rays behind Montgomery

Jordan Montgomery scattered six hits over seven innings and the Texas Rangers extended the Tampa Bay Rays’ playoff woes with a 4-0 win in Game 1.

Montgomery retired 14 of his last 16 batters and fanned pinch-hitter Junior Caminero to end his outing with five strikeouts and no walks.

The left-hander also made the defensive playoff game, diving to make a catch on Jose Siri’s bunt along the first-base line with runners at the corners in the second.

Tampa Bay lost its sixth straight postseason game dating to Game 2 of the 2021 AL Division Series against Boston.

Corey Seager and Josh Jung drove in runs and Texas benefited from four errors by the Rays, who are hitting .133 while scoring just one run in their last three playoff defeats.

Tyler Glasnow allowed four runs and six hits in five-plus innings with eight strikeouts and five walks.

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