Jose Berrios will attempt for the seventh time to pick up his eighth victory of the season when the Minnesota Twins host the Los Angeles Angels on Saturday.
Berrios (7-4, 3.69 ERA) last recorded a win on June 12 against the Houston Astros. He was on the cusp of claiming win No. 8 in his most recent start on Monday against the Chicago White Sox in the second game of a doubleheader, as he entered the bottom of the seventh inning with a 3-2 lead.
Berrios, however, surrendered a leadoff single to Brian Goodwin and hit Andrew Vaughn with a pitch before giving up a long three-run, walk-off homer to Gavin Sheets to wind up with a 5-3 loss.
“Berrios was almost unhittable,” Chicago manager Tony La Russa said. “It’s why the game is just crazy. You try to say you understand it and can predict it — you’re fooling yourself and everybody else. The guy’s out there pitching a beauty, and we get three.”
“It’s part of the game,” a dejected Berrios said. “I did my best. I gave it my 100 percent out there.”
Berrios is 2-2 with a 6.14 ERA in four career starts against the Angels. He picked up the win in a 6-3 victory over Los Angeles in the second game of a doubleheader on May 20, when he allowed three runs on three hits in five innings while striking out seven.
Angels left-hander Patrick Sandoval (2-4, 3.86) will make his first career start against Minnesota. Sandoval has gone four starts since his last victory, an 8-3 win over Detroit on June 19.
Los Angeles, which posted a 3-2 win in the series opener on Thursday, missed a chance to get back to the .500 mark on Friday night when it squandered an early four-run lead in a 5-4 loss.
The Angels held a 4-3 lead going into the bottom of the eighth when reliever Tony Watson walked Miguel Sano to start the inning. Los Angeles manager Joe Maddon then turned to closer Raisel Iglesias to try to get a potential six-out save.
After Brent Rooker lined out to left, Nick Gordon singled to move Sano to second. Ryan Jeffers then singled to left with Sano beating Juan Lagares’ throw home. Gordon hustled to third on the play, drawing a wild throw into left field by catcher Kurt Suzuki. Gordon quickly beat another throw from Lagares to score what proved to be the winning run.
“Once I saw the throw go into the field, I knew they had to make a play,” Gordon said. “I pretty much trust my legs a little bit, so I felt like they would have had to be perfect. Just kind of a bang-bang play. Trusted my instincts and took a shot there and it worked out.”
Lagares, who won a Gold Glove Award in 2014 with the New York Mets, was in the game for his defense.
“I really thought Lagares was going to throw (Sano) out at the plate,” Maddon said. “He had plenty of time to do it but then the throw was extremely off-line. And then the throw (from) the catcher goes back out to him and I thought he had a great chance to throw out (Gordon) too. I was surprised on both throws quite frankly. He’s such a good outfielder and he wasn’t that deep.”
–Field Level Media