The Guardians defeated the Twins 4-2 in their home opener


The Twins hit a home run and a triple on Thursday, loaded the bases twice and scored a run on a wild pitch in their home opener at Target Field.

The Guardians managed just one extra-base hit, one missed double in a scoreless inning, recorded five soft-hit singles against Pablo López and had runners thrown to the plate twice.

Final result: Guardians 4, Twins 2. What a cruel way to spoil a party.

Four of the six hits López allowed came in Cleveland's three-run fourth inning, consecutive soft singles by Steven Kwan, Andrés Giménez and José Ramirez and another later by Tyler Freeman. But the Twins went 0-for-12 with runners in scoring position, struck out 15 times and left nine runners on base, allowing just two runs and losing their second home opener in three years.

Tanner Bibee, a second-year Cleveland right-hander, was responsible for stopping one Twins rally after another with clutch strikeouts. Alex Kirilloff's one-out triple in the first inning failed to produce a run, not even when Bibee struck out Byron Buxton and got Max Kepler to hit the ball back to the mound. A batter's single and an error loaded the bases with two outs in the second inning, but Edouard Julien ended the threat with a third strike, one of three times he struck out in the game.

And two singles plus a passed ball in the fourth inning gave the Twins a chance to erase the Guardians' early lead, but Christian Vázquez flew to the centerfield wall to end that threat.

Bibee's only costly mistake came in the fifth inning when Julien hit a fly ball to left field, a fly to the opposite field that was carried into the first row of seats.

The Twins managed another run in the seventh against Guardians relievers Tim Herrin and Hunter Gaddis, but again, the inning felt like a missed opportunity. A walk to Willi Castro and a single by Vázquez opened the inning, and after a strikeout by Julien, Kirilloff was hit by Herrin's last pitch of the day, loading the bases.

The Twins, who were 0-6 with the bases loaded this season, scored a run when Gaddis skipped a pitch past catcher Bo Naylor, allowing Castro to run home. But Buxton struck and Kepler appeared.

Carlos Correa had three hits for the Twins (3-3). The Guardians improved to 6-2.