Posts Tagged ‘Jhonny Peralta’

Peralta, Tigers slug way past Twins

July 22, 2011 Comments off

MINNEAPOLIS — Since getting a day off, Jhonny Peralta has been crushing the ball over the last two nights against the Twins. Following a 3-for-4 performance on Thursday night, Peralta added three more hits on Friday night in the Tigers’ 8-2 victory at Target Field.

For the second straight game, Peralta finished a triple shy of hitting for the cycle. He belted a solo homer in the second, drove in two runs with a third-inning single and doubled home another run in the fifth.

The home run was his 16th of the season, and the four RBIs boosted his season total to 58.

“He’s in the midst of a real good year,” said Tigers manager Jim Leyland. “He’s really been a perfect fit for us in that area, sandwiched in between Victor and Carlos. He’s absolutely been tremendous.

“I think what he’s done so far this year is he’s capitalized on mistakes. When they’ve made mistakes, he hasn’t missed them very often.”

In 12 career games at Target Field, Peralta is batting .432 (19-for-44) with eight runs, two doubles, five homers and 15 RBIs, including seven RBIs over the last two nights. He has homered in each of his last five games in Minnesota.

Over his last 13 games against the Twins, Peralta has 21 RBIs, including 13 this season.

“He’s hot, is swinging good and is on the ball,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “Right now, he’s about as locked in as we’ve seen him.”

With the win, the Tigers’ 11th straight over the Twins, they increased their lead in the American League Central to 1 1/2 games over the Indians, who lost on Friday to the White Sox.

With more than 60 games to go in the regular season, though, the Tigers still say that they aren’t paying much attention to the standings.

“At this point in the year, we’re concentrating on ourselves,” said Tigers starter Max Scherzer. “We know that we can win this division. We know that we’re good and we know we’ve got the talent. We just feel like if we go out there and compete every day and keep these winning streaks going, then we’re going to be the team on top.”

Every Tigers player had at least one hit on the night and five different players scored a run.

Left fielder Ryan Raburn went 2-for-4 on the night with a solo home run in the first and two runs scored. Magglio Ordonez also had two hits with a pair of runs scored, and Carlos Guillen drove in two with a single.

Detroit jumped all over Twins lefty Brian Duensing, who lasted just 4 2/3 innings. Duensing surrendered seven runs on nine hits, walking one and striking out seven. In two starts this year against the Tigers, Duensing is 0-1 with a 12.54 ERA, allowing 13 runs on 18 hits in 9 1/3 innings.

Duensing opened each of the first two innings with a strikeout, followed by a home run, followed by another strikeout. He struck out the side in the second to go along with a homer and a single, but big innings in the third and fifth did him in.

“Their whole lineup is stacked,” Duensing said. “They have the standard big guys in the middle of the lineup, but one through nine is pretty good and is producing right now. So that makes them even more dangerous.”

With the offense putting up plenty of runs to support him, Scherzer delivered an impressive outing, giving up just one run over seven innings of work. The right-hander struck out four batters while allowing just four hits and one walk.

Scherzer faced just four over the minimum in his seven frames, as he won for the 11th time this season. He allowed more than one baserunner only once, when the Twins had two singles and scored their only run of the game in the second inning.

Over his last three starts, Scherzer is 2-1 with a 1.66 ERA, allowing just four runs on 18 hits with one walk and 12 strikeouts in 21 2/3 innings pitched.

“He really had a pretty comfortable seven innings,” Leyland said. “I thought he did a good job. He didn’t really tire at all, I didn’t think.”

Jordan Schelling is an associate reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Twins show fight, but drop fifth straight

May 12, 2011 Comments off

MINNEAPOLIS — As he saw Matt Tolbert’s double headed to the gap in right, the only thing on Twins outfielder Ben Revere’s mind was scoring from first base. With his head down, Revere took off, quickly rounding second and then third.

With the relay coming in, Revere slid between the legs of catcher Alex Avila, as the throw from Tigers second baseman Scott Sizemore went wide. Revere was safe, tying the game, but he paid a price for his efforts, taking a hard hit to the chin from Avila’s knee.

“I was running top speed trying to tie this game, and luckily I was able to tie the game at that point,” Revere said. “I really did not know. Some guys said I flipped the catcher over, but I got hit in the chin a little bit. It looked like I got more of the collision than he did, but I did anything I could to sacrifice my body to score that run.”

That hustle and determination from Revere, which drew a standing ovation from the crowd of 38,938 at Target Field, was a little like the way Wednesday’s game went for the Twins. Every time they worked hard to come back from a deficit, they were knocked back down by the Tigers, who came away with the 9-7 victory for the two-game series sweep.

“Kind of a wild one out there today,” said Twins manager Ron Gardenhire. “Opportunities lost and we also picked up some big hits and battled our tails off to get back in it. But we didn’t make enough pitches.”

After coming from behind three times to tie the game or take the lead on Wednesday, the Twins were all out of comebacks in the ninth inning.

Entering the inning tied at seven runs apiece, closer Matt Capps surrendered a pair of runs in the final frame, giving the game back to the Tigers yet again.

It was a forgettable outing for Capps, who served up a two-run blast in the eighth to Jhonny Peralta, but still had a chance to pick up the win after the Twins tied it in the bottom half of the inning on Tolbert’s RBI double.

“It was a slider that I left up,” Capps said. “I just left it up over the plate and he hit it.”

According to Peralta, there was a bit of luck involved, too.

“I’m not looking for that pitch,” Peralta said. “I’m looking for a sinker and he threw me a slider right there. I don’t know how I made good contact, but it’s working.”

Peralta’s home run came just after the Twins appeared to have made the comeback needed for a thrilling victory.

Following a one-out RBI double in the seventh that cut the lead to two runs, designated hitter Jason Kubel crushed a 1-1 sinker from Tigers reliever Daniel Schlereth 460 feet into the right field seats for a three-run blast. In their 35th game, it was the Twins’ first three-run home run of the year.

Kubel’s home run was his team-leading fourth of the season, and his four RBIs in the game also put him in the team lead with 20. He added a single and a walk on a 2-for-4 day as the Twins broke out the bats for a couple late rallies that were all for naught.

“It definitely shifted the momentum on our side,” Kubel said of the home run. “But they came right back and put us back down. But we fought back, and then it got away from us again.”

With a thin bullpen, the Twins were hoping for a quality start from right-hander Scott Baker. Instead, Baker delivered a shaky, walk-filled 4 1/3 innings that put his team in a 5-2 hole through five innings.

Baker had been brilliant in his last four starts, going 2-0 with a 1.59 ERA while averaging seven innings per game. Over that span, Baker racked up 25 strikeouts against only four walks.

He continued to add to his strikeout total on Wednesday, recording six, but walks became a problem again for Baker, just as they have been for the rest of the Twins pitching staff early this season. Baker issued five bases on balls, marking a career high for the right-hander.

“Just a couple mechanical issues where at times mechanically you’re not where you need to be,” Baker said. “That translates to your hand not being where it needs to be which translates to the ball not going where you want it to go.

“Obviously we’re not robots, we’re human beings. So sometimes it’s harder to make that adjustment than others. Today, unfortunately, I wasn’t able to make that adjustment.”

Baker’s walks were not the only ones that hurt the Twins on the day.

Lefty reliever Jose Mijares walked Brennan Boesch with one out in the eighth, which set up Peralta’s two-run, pinch-hit blast off Capps one batter later. With his team issuing eight walks on the day, Gardenhire was not at all pleased.

“You walk people there at the end of the ballgame, you don’t want to put anybody on base,” Gardenhire said. “That’s not being too fine, that’s just not throwing it over. You’ve got to have courage, too. Courage is throwing the ball over the plate, making them swing the bat and hopefully we’ll catch it. Sometimes you back away and you shy away and that’s not good enough.”

Gardenhire also was unhappy with the missed opportunities in the game offensively. In particular, he could not understand how center fielder Denard Span was unable to score from second base on Luke Hughes’ double in the seventh.

As Gardenhire saw it, Span should have been at least halfway to third on the play, and as the team’s fastest runner, should have scored easily.

Span eventually scored on Kubel’s home run, but it was a mistake that could have cost the Twins had it not been for their designated hitter’s three-run blast. As much as injuries, illnesses and offensive struggles have been an issue for the Twins early this season, fundamental lapses have found their way into the mix as well.

That, Gardenhire says, is something that needs to be fixed for them to start winning games.

“The fundamental stuff and the little stuff we have done so well, these guys have been part of that,” he said. “There are not any guys out there on the field who have not been part of that through Spring Training and part of the season.

“So you can’t tell me you don’t know. You can’t tell me that. It’s just not getting it done.”

Jordan Schelling is an associate reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rare hailstorm delays Tigers and Twins

May 10, 2011 Comments off

By Jordan Schelling /

MINNEAPOLIS — When Tuesday’s game began at Target Field, it was an unseasonably warm 87 degrees and very humid, but it was an otherwise beautiful evening for baseball.That all changed about an hour into the game when severe storms started rolling into the area. Dark skies poured rain down on the Tigers and Twins, causing the game to be stopped at 8:17 p.m. CT, during the bottom of the fourth inning, and things got even more interesting during the 62-minute delay.

As tornado warnings were issued for the area and funnel clouds were spotted in other parts of the city, rain gave way to hail, ranging in size from pebbles to golf balls, which covered the field.

“That was a first in the big leagues, no doubt,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said of the hail delay.

Gardenhire was not the only one who saw a hail delay for the first time. On both sides, players who were asked about it said they’d never seen anything like it.

“I’ve never seen that. It was big. First time for me that I’ve seen that in a game,” said the Tigers’ Jhonny Peralta, who has spent his career in the American League Central and has seen plenty of wintry weather during games. “I’ve seen everything. I’ve seen a lot of snow. I’ve seen ice rain.”

A good portion of the delay was due to the time needed to clear the hailstones from the field. In addition to putting down Quick Dry on wet spots in the infield, the grounds crew grabbed rakes, shovels and buckets to collect the hailstones that had fallen in the outfield and in foul territory. Detroit won the game, 10-2.

Twins designated hitter Jason Kubel thought the hailstorm was fitting, considering everything else that has gone wrong this season for the club.

“It just makes perfect sense,” Kubel said. “Why not?”

Many had fun with the storm, including a few players.

Young fans could be seen throughout various parts of the stadium having the hail equivalent of snowball fights, tossing the small balls of ice at each other.

In the visitors’ dugout, Tigers ace Justin Verlander could be seen tossing hailstones back onto the field. Later, Verlander broke out the fungo bat and took a few swings as teammate Phil Coke pitched the balls of ice to him.

“They were big ones,” Tigers manager Jim Leyland said of the hail. “When somebody talks about golf ball-sized hail, that was it, to the fact.”

Jordan Schelling is an associate reporter for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.