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Twins squander 6-run 6th inning in walk-off loss

Minnesota has now dropped MLB-worst 10 on game-ending homers
September 22, 2018

OAKLAND -- The Twins wasted a six-run sixth inning and suffered a familiar ending, as they lost in walk-off fashion for the Major League-leading 14th time this season.Reliever Matt Magill gave up a game-winning homer to Khris Davis in the 10th inning in a 7-6 loss to the A's at

OAKLAND -- The Twins wasted a six-run sixth inning and suffered a familiar ending, as they lost in walk-off fashion for the Major League-leading 14th time this season.
Reliever Matt Magill gave up a game-winning homer to Khris Davis in the 10th inning in a 7-6 loss to the A's at the Oakland Coliseum on Friday night, marking the 10th time this year the Twins were defeated on a walk-off homer. It's a dubious mark for the Twins, who own the MLB record ahead of the Cardinals' eight losses on walk-off homers in 2010. The 14 walk-off losses are also one off the club record of 15, set in 1964, and two off the MLB record shared by several clubs.
"It was tough today because we did have a nice rally, we strung together some hits," Twins manager Paul Molitor said. "Davis, a guy you kind of want to avoid beating you, hit a couple of homers. So it's just not quite executing as well as we needed to to win that game."
In his second-to-last start of the season, right-hander Jose Berrios tied his career high for innings as a professional with 185 1/3 on the year, but had some tough luck against the A's. The 24-year-old struck out eight and gave up only four hits over 5 2/3 innings, but surrendered five runs and walked three.

He was hurt early by a two-run shot from Davis, who leads the Majors with 45 on the year after his two-homer performance. Berrios then gave up runs on sacrifice flies in both the second and fourth innings.
"I feel like I was commanding all my pitches," Berrios said through an interpreter. "I felt strong out there. My only mistake was that pitch to Davis and he hit it out. The other things were a couple of hits here and there, nothing hard-hit besides that one. It's just how it goes."
After recording just two hits through their first five frames, the Twins broke out for a six-run sixth, keyed by five straight hits to open the inning, including a two-run homer from Robbie Grossman and an RBI double from Ehire Adrianza. Jorge Polanco delivered the big blow after Joe Mauer was intentionally walked to load the bases, ripping a three-run double to center to give the Twins the lead.
"Robbie hit the homer and we got some clutch hitting, including Polanco's double there with two outs," Molitor said. "They kind of came in a little bit with two strikes, two outs and gave him a little room [in the outfield]. He double-crossed them by hitting it over his head. But he put together a good at-bat."
But it was short-lived, as the A's tied it in the bottom of the inning after Berrios walked Stephen Piscotty to open the frame before getting a pair of strikeouts. Berrios, who threw 104 pitches, was removed for lefty Gabriel Moya, who served up a game-tying, two-run homer to pinch-hitter Mark Canha.

"We had a little trouble matching up there," Molitor said. "They had some options and they countered and they took advantage. I wasn't sure it would be Canha or [Chad] Pinder, I knew it would be one of those two guys. I still preferred that, where we were at, in terms of [Matt] Joyce vs. Berrios at that time. Didn't work out."
The inherited run was charged to Berrios, who has a 3.93 ERA in 31 starts this year after posting a 3.89 ERA in 26 appearances (25 starts) last year. He threw a combined 185 1/3 innings between Triple-A and the Majors last year to match this season's output with one start remaining.
"I feel healthy," Berrios said. "I'm glad to be here with my teammates enjoying every game. Whatever is left of the season. Not the way we want to finish but it's just the way how it goes this season."
SOUND SMART
Davis joins Adam Jones, Carlos Gomez, Trayce Thompson, Gary Sanchez, Mike Zunino, Alcides Escobar, Mookie Betts, Francisco Lindor and Salvador Perez as the 10 players who have a hit a walk-off homer against the Twins this year.

HE SAID IT
"We understand that a lot of things have transpired during this season, injuries and things like that out of our control. But I feel like with the group of people we have here, everybody works hard together to accomplish a goal and it didn't go our way this season." -- Berrios, on the Twins, who are 43-31 at home but 28-51 on the road
UP NEXT
Right-hander Chase De Jong (0-1, 3.68 ERA) will start for the Twins in the second game of the series on Saturday at 8:05 p.m. CT. De Jong will be making his third start with Minnesota, and gave up five runs (three earned) over 3 1/3 innings against the Royals last time out. Right-hander Mike Fiers (12-7, 3.38 ERA) starts for Oakland.

Rhett Bollinger has covered the Twins for MLB.com since 2011. Follow him on Twitter @RhettBollinger and Facebook.