<
>

Alex Cora loses aggressive gamble

MINNEAPOLIS -- Pinch runner Alex Cora said he made up his mind to go from first to third as soon as Julio Borbon hit the ball through the hole.

"That's why I'm out there get to the next base," Cora said. "I wanted to get to where we were first and third with one out. The safe play was first and second, but I was trying to be aggressive. You have to tip your cap to [Jason] Repko."

Repko charged the ball and threw a rope to third baseman Danny Valencia, who applied the tag. Or did he? Replays showed his glove might have been between Cora's hands, but Cora didn't argue about it. (And since the throw was clearly in time, that's normally going to be called an out anyway).

Third baseman Michael Young said Cora forced Repko to make a perfect throw to get him and that's what happened.

"Alex did the same thing we all would have done," Young said. "You try to get to third there. I took a perfect throw to get him."

Manager Ron Washington would have preferred that the top of his order get an opportunity to score that tying run in the final inning.

"You have to know the point in the game," Washington said. "If you go first to third right there, you have to be 100 percent sure you can make it, especially being down a run and being in the last inning. You have to make sure, that's all. I like the aggressiveness, but sometimes you've just got to be certain. The situation will always dictate how aggressive you can be and should be."

Other reaction:

* Derek Holland wasn't happy with his decision to go off-speed to Repko in the seventh inning after getting ahead, 1-2. "I should have gone right after him," Holland said. The young pitcher said that was his mistake that entire inning. He had thrown off-speed stuff with success earlier in the game, but had mixed it with good fastball command. He felt he moved too far away from the fastball in that seventh inning. The Twins got a single and a walk off him with one out and that was the end of Holland's night.

* Still, it was overall a good outing for Holland. He gave up four runs on six hits with one walk and five strikeouts.

"I felt pretty good with all my pitches," Holland said. "I felt like I had good command with all four, attacking the zone, staying ahead of hitters, it was just that last inning where I was falling behind and trying to trick hitters instead of doing what I was doing before."

* Washington said Borbon should not have thrown the ball to third in the sixth inning in an attempt to get Orlando Hutson after Joe Mauer singled. The throw allowed Mauer to go to third and eliminated a chance at a double play.

"That's another one where you have to be sure you can get him or at least throw it where a cutoff man can get it," Washington said. "He was trying to make a play, but you have to understand the situation."

* Alexi Ogando hung an 0-2 slider to J.J. Hardy, which resulted in an RBI single that tied the score in the seventh. Washington had no problem with the pitch selection, just the execution. "That ball has to be in the dirt there," Washington said. "You can't give him anything to hit."

* Ian Kinsler joked that he was trying to get in as many swings as he could in his first at-bat, a 10-pitch affair in the second that resulted in a fly ball out. "I feel 100 percent," Kinsler said. "It was good to get back." He was 1-for-4 with a run scored.

* Clay Rapada made his Texas debut and looked good, getting Jim Thome to fly out and Mike Tolbert to line out.

* Darren O'Day did a nice job, getting Michael Cuddyer to pop up with runners at second and third and two outs in a 4-3 game in the seventh. He then struck out Delmon Young to start the eighth.