Michael Cuddyer hit two singles with the bases loaded to have 4 RBI and Kevin Slowey struck out a career-high 9 batters in 7 innings while allowing just 1 run.

 

Although Torii didn’t have his best day in the field, diving after a ball that went off his glove and into right field, he had a hit and scored twice, with an intentional walk in his last at-bat.

 

Garrett Jones hit his first career home run in the second inning.

 

Jason Bartlett and Jason Kubel, the recent 1-2 punch at the top of the order, combined to go 4-for-8 with 2 walks, 2 strikeouts, and 3 runs scored. Bartlett hit a triple and the rest were singles.

 

It certainly was emotional for everyone in the Dome as Hunter received a standing ovation each time he came up to bat. There were also extra-loud cheers when he jogged onto the field for warmups, and then obviously when Jason Tyner replaced him the place went nuts. I thought it was a good move on Gardenhire’s part so that Torii could have his own time to be appreciated by the 29,000+ fans that were in attendance.

Most fans should want Torii back simply because there is no clear replacement. If he goes, the team would have to spend more money on a free agent need (which we also have at 3B and DH).  It’s a situation that can only be waited out, so I’m actually excited for this offseason. Seeing what kind of players new GM Bill Smith brings in should give fans an idea of which direction the team wants to go.

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