Danny Coulombe set for first start as Twins host Indians

MLB

The Minnesota Twins will give veteran left-hander Danny Coulombe his first major league start on Friday night when they face the Cleveland Indians in the second game of a four-game series in Minneapolis.

Coulombe will be called up for the outing from Triple-A St. Paul, where he is 1-1 with a 1.77 ERA in 14 appearances, all in relief, this season. The Twins will use a bullpen game to fill the spot of Randy Dobnak, who was placed on the 10-day injured list Thursday due to a right middle finger strain.

Coulombe has appeared in 155 games — all out of the bullpen — over six major league seasons with the Los Angeles Dodgers (2014-15), Oakland A’s (2015-18) and Minnesota (2020). He has a 6-4 record and a 4.19 ERA.

The 31-year-old St. Louis native has made six career appearances against Cleveland, compiling a 0-0 record and 1.69 ERA. He has 137 strikeouts in 146 major league innings.

Cleveland, which won the series opener 4-1 on Thursday, will counter with Cal Quantrill (0-2, 2.74 ERA). The right-hander is 0-0 with a 4.50 ERA in three career appearances, all in relief, against Minnesota.

The Indians improved to 7-3 over their past 10 games and 3-3 on their nine-game road trip with their Thursday night win.

Left fielder Eddie Rosario, who signed a one-year, $8 million contract with Cleveland in February after starring for six seasons with the Twins, celebrated his Target Field homecoming with a two-run single in the eighth inning to break a 1-1 tie.

Rosario, voted the Twins’ MVP in 2018 and the object of a video tribute before the game, hit 119 homers for Minnesota, including a career-high 32 to go along with 109 RBIs in 2019. However, with a pipeline of highly touted young outfielders on the horizon, including current starters Alex Kirilloff and Trevor Larnach, the Twins let Rosario go in a cost-cutting move.

The Twins intentionally walked Jose Ramirez to load the bases with one out in the eighth before bringing in left-hander Taylor Rogers to face the left-handed-hitting Rosario. On Rogers’ first pitch, Rosario got a sinker in the middle of the plate and drove it into center field to knock in what proved to be the game-winning runs.

“I love this moment,” said Rosario, who was serenaded by a few chants of “Eddie! Eddie!” while doing a postgame interview on the field. “I love that moment when they change the pitcher for me to go lefty-lefty. I knew Taylor was coming. I know it’s coming to me. I was ready.”

Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said, “We know Eddie kind of likes those moments, but I’m going to bet on (Rogers) every time. He is as good a left-hander out of the bullpen as you’re going to find anywhere in baseball. He has been for a long time. He just missed with a pitch in the middle of the plate, and Eddie put a good swing on it. That happens sometimes.”

The big hit helped make up for an earlier baserunning gaffe by Rosario in the sixth inning after he was tagged off the bag after stealing second base.

“That was not a good moment for me,” Rosario admitted.

“I was happy for him because that certainly was not what we were aiming for earlier,” Cleveland manager Terry Francona said. “But he got a big hit. That’s a good game to win, man.”

–Field Level Media

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