Dodgers’ bats falter against Twins, winning streak ends at 6 games

LOS ANGELES ― The Dodgers used up all their late-game magic to beat the Minnesota Twins in 12 innings on Monday.

They used up all their pitchers too.

Although Clayton Kershaw and three relievers kept a resilient Twins lineup mostly at bay Tuesday, the Dodgers’ failure to capitalize on runners in scoring position resulted in a 5-1 loss.

The Dodgers went 2 for 12 with runners in scoring position and left nine men on base. Max Muncy made the final out of the fourth inning at home plate, where he was thrown out on a botched double-steal attempt. They left the bases loaded in the seventh inning. So it was that the Dodgers’ winning streak ended at six games before an announced crowd of 52,159.

Minnesota right-hander Bailey Ober (3-0) allowed one run in six innings. Ober, coincidentally, was drafted by the Dodgers in the 23rd round of the 2016 MLB Draft but did not sign.

Several other former Dodgers did damage for the Twins (23-19) in a battle of first-place teams.

Donovan Solano led off the game with a double into the left-field corner. The former Dodger minor leaguer scored on a two-out single by another former Dodger, Kyle Farmer.

Kershaw (6-3) did not allow a run in the second inning, but he needed 47 pitches just to record the game’s first six outs.

In the fourth inning, Minnesota used a leadoff walk by Michael A. Taylor, and back-to-back singles by Joey Gallo and Willi Castro, to take a 3-0 lead. Kershaw was fortunate to strike out Solano and induce a double-play groundout by Carlos Correa – thanks to a slick-handed play by second baseman Mookie Betts – to end the inning without allowing another run.

The Dodgers were hoping to coax a long start from Kershaw, but the veteran left-hander had reached the end of his rope quickly. Minnesota seemed intent on driving up Kershaw’s pitch count from the outset, and he threw 90 pitches, 57 for strikes, in four innings.

Pitching three days after the death of his mother, Marianne, Kershaw allowed seven hits, walked one, hit a batter and struck out seven.

With their pitching staff taxed after Monday’s 12-inning marathon, left-hander Justin Bruihl made his third appearance in three days and pitched the final two innings. He allowed a two-run home run to Farmer in the ninth inning to cap the scoring.

More to come on this story.

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