Rosario scores on balk to lift Twins over Brewers, 5-4

Minnesota Twins Eddie Rosario scores and celebrates the run with Jason Castro after drawing a balk from Milwaukee Brewers relief pitcher Oliver Drake in the seventh inning on Monday in Minneapolis. (AP Photo)
The Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Eddie Rosario danced, Oliver Drake flinched, and the Minnesota Twins were on their way to another comeback victory.

Rosario doubled home the tying run in the seventh inning, and his aggressive base running caused Drake to balk home the winning run as the Twins defeated the Milwaukee Brewers 5-4 on Monday night.

Rosario’s double drove in Eduardo Escobar from first base with nobody out. Two batters later, Rosario was at third with two out when the Brewers employed a dramatic shift on left-handed hitting Jason Castro. Third baseman Travis Shaw moved into short right field, and shortstop Orlando Arcia played up the middle.

With no fielder within 80 feet of third base, Rosario took advantage. He danced halfway down the baseline, causing Drake (3-4) to step off the rubber and look the runner back.

When Drake stepped back on the rubber, Rosario made another break for home. This time Drake flinched and home plate umpire Bill Welke called a balk, sending Rosario home.

“I was trying to have fun but at the same time play hard,” Rosario said via team interpreter Carlos Font. “If you’re going to leave me that much room to run, I’m going to take it.”

Although Brewers manager Craig Counsell argued the call, Drake seemed resigned to the outcome.

“He was jumping around the play before. Right there, it’s huge if I can just make one pitch after that and get that guy out at the plate, then it’s a tie game and it’s a completely different story,” Drake said.

After the game, Counsell didn’t second-guess the decision to stick with the shift and leave room for Rosario to distract Drake.

“We’ve done it before. We shift quite a bit. We’ve played in that spot,” Counsell said. “The runner’s going to play around there. He’s not going anywhere.”

Buddy Boshers (1-0) retired one batter in the seventh to earn the victory in relief of starter Ervin Santana. Matt Belisle pitched the ninth to earn his second save in as many days for the Twins, who traded All-Star closer Brandon Kintzler to the Washington Nationals on July 31.

The Twins rallied from a 5-0 first-inning deficit to beat the Rangers on Sunday, and they put themselves in a 4-1 hole on Monday in the top of the fourth.

Keon Broxton homered, doubled and drove in two runs for the Brewers, who began the day a half-game behind the Chicago Cubs for first place in the NL Central.

Twins shortstop Jorge Polanco, whose two-out error in the third led to two unearned runs, had a career-high four hits, including a two-run double in the fourth that got the Twins within 4-3.



Twins: LHP Adalberto Mejia (4-5, 4.30) has battled high pitch counts as a rookie, and it’s cost him a chance to pitch deeper into games. He was pulled after 90-plus pitches in each of his last three starts.