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Games like the one Astudillo had Thursday only help add to the reputation of the player affectionately known as “La Tortuga.”Astudillo had a career-high four RBIs Kenley Jansen Jersey , Tyler Austin added three and the Twins beat the Detroit Tigers 9-3.Astudillo, playing in his 26th big league game, capped Minnesota’s five-run third inning when his two-out single drove in a pair of runs to give the Twins the lead. He also added a two-run double in the fifth.“I’m just trying to go out there and try to swing at good pitches and it’s working out for me so far,” Astudillo said through a translator. “Just swinging at good pitches, and thankfully I’m executing.”Minnesota took two of three against Detroit in the final series between the teams this year. The Twins won the season series 12-7.Tigers starter Francisco Liriano (5-12) left after just 2 1/3 innings due to lower back tightness. The former Twin exited with the bases loaded and wound up being charged with four runs.“He was having a hard time breathing out there,” manager Ron Gardenhire said. “He was trying not to land hard on his front foot, every time he landed hard on his front foot, he felt shooting pain. Just got to get him out of the game.”It was Liriano’s shortest start since the last time he faced the Twins back on Aug. 16, when he went just 1 2/3 innings.“This is not the way you want to finish the year, especially when you’re going to be a free agent,” Liriano said. “Very disappointed. I tried to pitch through it, but it didn’t get better, it was getting worse.”Austin tied the game in the third with a double that scored Joe Mauer and Logan Forsythe. He also plated Forsythe in the fifth inning with a ground-rule double.Astudillo has put together some impressive numbers since debuting with Minnesota in late June. Including Thursday’s two-hit, four-RBI game, Astudillo is now batting .357 with 19 RBIs. In the last two weeks, Astudillo is hitting .415 (22 for 53) and has 15 RBIs in that span.With a roster very much in question heading into the offseason http://www.dodgersfanproshop.com/authentic-max-muncy-jersey , Astudillo is doing what he can to make a case for a roster spot in 2019.“It’s important, these guys that are trying to get at least somewhat established,” said Twins manager Paul Molitor. “It takes longer than a month to get yourself on the map, but you can make an impression.”The versatile Astudillo also struck out on a check swing in the second inning, just the third time on what was his 83rd plate appearance that he’s struck out with the Twins.“He doesn’t get to two strikes all that often,” Molitor said. “I was surprised to see a couple three-ball counts today. Liriano’s slider got him.”The Tigers threatened in the fifth with the bases loaded and one out. Minnesota reliever Matt Magill recorded two big outs to end the inning. Magill struck out Grayson Greiner looking before getting JaCoby Jones to go down swinging for the third out.Minnesota once again employed the opening pitcher strategy, with Gabriel Moya tossing just the first inning. The lefty gave up the game’s first run on a sacrifice fly by Nicholas Castellanos.Stephen Gonsalves (2-2) took over for Moya in the second and pitched 3 1/3 innings. Gonsalves was tagged for a pair of runs on three hits and four walks but earned his second career win.TRAINER’S ROOMTwins: Molitor didn’t sound optimistic that 3B Miguel Sano (leg) would return in the team’s final few games this season. “Each day it’s looking less and less,” Molitor said. “He’s not really changing how he’s feeling, and I’m certainly not going to be someone to push him out there if he’s not comfortable playing.” Sano last played on Sept. 18.UP NEXTTigers: RHP Jordan Zimmermann starts Friday’s game against the Brewers at Miller Park. He’s winless in his last three outings.Twins: RHP Jose Berrios (11-11, 3.93 ERA) starts the first game of a doubleheader Friday against the White Sox. Berrios is looking for his first win since Aug. 4. Alex Cora spent this season rewarding the support of Jackie Bradley Jr., David Price and the rest of the Boston Red Sox organization with a record-breaking year and a run deep into the playoffs. The rookie manager’s accomplishments go further than the baseball diamond, too.Having seen his homeland of Puerto Rico devastated by Hurricane Maria, Cora remains at the forefront of helping the island rebuild.“It’s been a year since the hurricane and Puerto Rico is still recovering. We all have families over there and we know that the situation remains difficult,” Red Sox assistant general manager Eddie Romero said.“Alex has that always in mind. I admire that. We are always talking about it. Hopefully, this can bring a little bit of relief to the people, that they have a Puerto Rican hero in such a big state Enrique Hernandez Jersey , so important,” he said.Cora has a lot of people rooting for him right now. His team is one win from reaching the World Series, leading Houston 3-1 in the AL Championship Series.Romero grew up on the island and his dad, Ed, played in the World Series for the Red Sox. So Cora’s efforts especially resonate with him.“Alex is always thinking about them. That’s very nice,” Romero said.Cora had his mind set on aiding those in need from the very beginning of his first stint as a big league manager. While negotiating his contract last October, he made a request that the Red Sox front office supply aid to Puerto Rico, which the club eagerly accepted.Then, Cora flew to his hometown of Caguas with team president Sam Kennedy to deliver food and supplies.Boston catcher Christian Vazquez, whose walk-up song is “Vamos Pa’ La Calle” by a fellow Puerto Rican, popular artist Bad Bunny, later joined Cora to lend a hand.Last year, Vazquez dyed his hair blonde to pay homage to the team that made a run to the championship game against the United States in the 2017 World Baseball Classic. Cora was the general manager for that club and played infield for Puerto Rico in 2006 and 2009.Cora’s profound love for his homeland is ever-present in his actions. During his introductory news conference, he put the spotlight on his platform by raising the Puerto Rican flag as his daughter wiped away tears.“Whenever I have the chance to talk about them or represent them the right way, I have to do it,” Cora said during this month’s playoffs. “But for as proud they are — because they are — I’m prouder of them.”“For us to be in the situation we’re in as a country right now Walker Buehler Jersey , after what happened last year, that’s a W right there. That’s a winning team right there. And I’m very proud of them,” he said.For Cora, Hispanic Heritage Month that ended Monday provided a lot of reminders.The Red Sox clinched the AL East title on Sept. 20, the one-year anniversary of Hurricane Maria. Cora went on to lead the Red Sox to a team-record 108 wins in the regular season.Cora capped off the month by guiding the Red Sox into the ALCS for the first time since 2013. He confidently stuck with Bradley and Price, who both overcame past struggles to deliver in this series.On and off the field, it’s been a historic season for Cora.Cora is the first Latino or minority manager for a franchise that was the last team in the majors to have a black player. In a year that saw Yawkey Way renamed to Jersey Street — team owner John Henry said the previous name, for a former owner, was a disturbing reminder of the club’s history of racial intolerance — Cora has done a lot in Massachusetts for a state that is home to the fifth-largest Puerto Rican community.In the ALCS, Cora’s team is taking on Houston and shortstop Carlos Correa, a star when the Astros won their first World Series title last year. Cora was the bench coach on that championship team.Correa also has been actively leading relief efforts in Puerto Rico. He recognizes all Cora has done for those who hail from an island that considers baseball a national treasure.“He means a lot. I’m pretty sure people in Puerto Rico are watching his games and obviously wishing him the best. But now he’s facing the Astros, and Carlos Correa is on this side, so they’re going to be split between him and me. I’m pretty sure everyone is excited to watch those games,” Correa said.Puerto Ricans across the globe have certainly raised a glass to toast Cora’s contributions. And perhaps the celebrations will carry on a little longer this year to celebrate a championship for the boy from Caguas who has become a leader.After all, Cora has carried more than a clubhouse this postseason. He has used his broad shoulders to carry the entire island.
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