for this game

Buscher leads Twins over Mariners

Aug 17, 2008 - 12:40 AM By Brian Hall PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

MINNEAPOLIS (Ticker) -- The Minnesota Twins' knack for coming up big in clutch situations is keeping them in the American League Central race.

Brian Buscher lifted the game-winning sacrifice fly in the bottom of the ninth inning to lead the Twins over the Seattle Mariners, 7-6, on Saturday.

Joe Mauer and Justin Morneau laced consecutive singles to begin the ninth against Cesar Jimenez (0-2), who was lifted for Miguel Batista. After Delmon Young's sacrifice and an intentional walk to Mike Lamb, Buscher plated Mauer with a fly to left field.

"It was pretty close right there," Mauer said. "If it was earlier in the game, I probably wouldn't have gone. But, you've got to take those chances."

With their fourth walk-off win, the Twins remained tied with the Chicago White Sox for the American League Central Division lead.

Minnesota leads the majors with 52 sacrifice flies and is hitting a major-league best .316 with runners in scoring position.

"We try to do the little things, like Delmon had a great bunt," Mauer said. "He probably hasn't bunted in a while, and getting those runners over was huge. Doing the little things like that to win ballgames; it all adds up."

Mauer paced the Twins with three hits - including his eighth home run - and scored three runs while Dennys Reyes (3-0) notched the victory after tossing a scoreless ninth.

Trailing 6-5 in the eighth, Minnesota evened the score when Jason Kubel drove in Buscher to set up the finish and improve the team's record to 27-8 at home since June 1.

"That was a big sixth inning for them, they have a potent offense," said Nick Punto, who finished with two hits. "But, we came back. Craig Breslow threw great for us and it was huge to get that win."

Ichiro Suzuki had two hits during Seattle's seventh loss in nine games. He laced a two-run single to cap a six-run rally that saw the Mariners erase a 5-0 deficit, which was created after the first two innings.

Seattle broke through against Minnesota starter Scott Baker to ignite the big inning. Jeremy Reed singled, Raul Ibanez walked and Adrian Beltre hit a double high off the right field wall to score Reed. Clement followed with a two-run single, knocking Baker out of the game and pulling the Mariners within 5-3.

Bryan LaHair walked and Yuniesky Betancourt doubled to plate Clement before Ichiro delivered his go-ahead base hit.

"We were hitting into double-plays and we were five runs down, so I hated to take a chance on doing anything," Mariners manager Jim Riggleman said. "But, we finally got a couple balls on the ground. Clement's ball was on the ground, but it went through. It's just kind of the luck of the draw. Some of them go through, some of them don't."

Minnesota did plenty of damage early against Seattle starter Ryan Rowland-Smith.

With two outs in the first, Mauer homered to left to open the scoring. Justin Morneau walked, Young singled and Randy Ruiz connected on an RBI single to increase the bulge to 2-0. Brendan Harris walked to load the bases, but Adam Everett flew out to center to end the threat.

An inning later, the Twins put three runs on the board as Mauer, Morneau and Young each had RBI singles for a 5-0 lead. There was the potential for more but Young was thrown out trying to advance to second.

"We got a nice lead out there and it looked like it was going to be one of those comfortable ones," Minnesota manager Ron Gardenhire said. "But, (Rowland-Smith) kind of shut us down after that, kept them in the ballgame. Then they throw a big touchdown against us, luckily we blocked the extra-point."








  • AL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    SEATTLE 0 0 0 0 0 6 0 0 0 6 10 0
    MINNESOTA 2 3 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 7 13 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: SEA - RYAN ROWLAND-SMITH, ROY CORCORAN (6TH), SEAN GREEN (8TH),
    CESAR JIMENEZ (8TH), MIGUEL BATISTA (9TH) AND JEFF CLEMENT,
    JAMIE BURKE (8TH)
    MIN - SCOTT BAKER, JE

    Aug 16 7:01 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY BRIAN BUSCHER SCORED JOE MAUER.
    FINAL SCORE: MINNESOTA 7, SEATTLE 6

    Mariners 6, Twins 7  Bot 9, 0 OutsAug 16 7:01 PM
  • 125
    roots
    senorpepr Added 5 roots

    Mariners 6, Twins 6  Bot 9, 0 OutsAug 16 6:48 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JASON KUBEL SCORED BRIAN BUSCHER.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J KUBEL ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 6
    MINNESOTA 6 BOTTOM, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: D SPAN (.309, 1-FOR-4)

    Mariners 6, Twins 6  Bot 8, 0 OutsAug 16 6:38 PM
  • 120
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 37 roots (Close Finish)

    Mariners 6, Twins 6  Bot 8, 0 OutsAug 16 6:38 PM
  • 83
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 35 roots (Close Finish)

    Mariners 6, Twins 5  Bot 7, 0 OutsAug 16 6:06 PM
  • 48
    roots
    McTool Added 10 roots

    Mariners 6, Twins 5  Top 7, 0 OutsAug 16 6:04 PM
  • 38
    roots
    alamowx Added 5 roots

    Mariners 6, Twins 5  Top 7, 0 OutsAug 16 6:04 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY ICHIRO SUZUKI SCORED BRYAN LAHAIR AND YUNIESKY
    BETANCOURT.
    SITUATION: 6 RUNS IN, I SUZUKI ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 6
    MINNESOTA 5 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR SEATTLE: J REED (.286, 2-FOR-3)

    Mariners 6, Twins 5  Top 6, 0 OutsAug 16 5:48 PM
  • 33
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 33 roots

    Mariners 6, Twins 5  Top 6, 0 OutsAug 16 5:48 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY YUNIESKY BETANCOURT SCORED JEFF CLEMENT.
    SITUATION: 4 RUNS IN, Y BETANCOURT ON SECOND, B LAHAIR ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 4
    MINNESOTA 5 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR SEATTLE: I SUZUKI (.305, 1-FOR-3)

    Mariners 4, Twins 5  Top 6, 0 OutsAug 16 5:45 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JEFF CLEMENT SCORED RAUL IBANEZ AND ADRIAN
    BELTRE.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, J CLEMENT ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 3
    MINNESOTA 5 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR SEATTLE: W BALENTIEN (.212, 0-FOR-2)

    Mariners 3, Twins 5  Top 6, 0 OutsAug 16 5:35 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY ADRIAN BELTRE SCORED JEREMY REED.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, A BELTRE ON SECOND, R IBANEZ ON THIRD, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 1
    MINNESOTA 5 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR SEATTLE: J LOPEZ (.304, 0-FOR-2)

    Mariners 1, Twins 5  Top 6, 0 OutsAug 16 5:33 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY DELMON YOUNG SCORED JOE MAUER.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, J MORNEAU ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 0
    MINNESOTA 5 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: R RUIZ (.400, 1-FOR-1, RBI)

    Mariners 0, Twins 5  Bot 2, 0 OutsAug 16 4:43 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    GROUND RULE DOUBLE BY JUSTIN MORNEAU SCORED NICK PUNTO.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, J MORNEAU ON SECOND, J MAUER ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 0
    MINNESOTA 4 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: D YOUNG (.294, 1-FOR-1)

    Mariners 0, Twins 4  Bot 2, 0 OutsAug 16 4:40 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JOE MAUER SCORED DENARD SPAN.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J MAUER ON FIRST, N PUNTO ON THIRD, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 0
    MINNESOTA 3 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: J MORNEAU (.302, 0-FOR-0, BB)

    Mariners 0, Twins 3  Bot 2, 0 OutsAug 16 4:38 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY RANDY RUIZ SCORED JUSTIN MORNEAU.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, R RUIZ ON FIRST, D YOUNG ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 0
    MINNESOTA 2 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: B HARRIS (.262, 6 HR, 40 RBI)

    Mariners 0, Twins 2  Bot 1, 0 OutsAug 16 4:16 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY JOE MAUER (8) TO LEFT CENTER WITH 2 OUT IN
    THE 1ST OFF RYAN ROWLAND-SMITH.
    CURRENT SCORE: SEATTLE 0, MINNESOTA 1
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: J MORNEAU (.302, 18 HR, 93 RBI)

    Mariners 0, Twins 1  Bot 1, 0 OutsAug 16 4:12 PM