Twins fall 3-2 to Tigers on Romine’s historic day
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Andrew Romine became the fifth player in baseball history to play all nine positions in one game, helping the Detroit Tigers beat the Minnesota Twins 3-2 on Saturday night.
Romine, a 31-year-old utilityman, played catcher for the first time in his career and got one out on the mound. He was the first player to accomplish the feat since Shane Halter for Detroit against Minnesota on Oct. 1, 2000.
Tigers manager Brad Ausmus was Halter’s teammate in that game 17 years ago. He decided two years ago that the versatile Romine might be able to play each position, but the opportunity didn’t present itself until Saturday night, with the Tigers eliminated from playoff contention and the Twins locked into the second AL wild card.
Buck Farmer (5-5) pitched five strong innings for the win and Shane Greene recorded his ninth save. Aaron Slegers (0-1) took the loss for the Twins, allowing three runs in 4 1/3 innings.
Romine started in left and worked his way across the outfield before moving to third base in the fourth inning. He played shortstop in the fifth, second base in the sixth and catcher in the seventh, when he caught Blaine Hardy for four batters and then switched back to second base.
He pitched to Miguel Sano in the eighth, and the All-Star slugger bounced to third on a 3-1 pitch. Romine topped out at 87 mph on the stadium’s radar gun.
After retiring Sano, Romine moved to first base, his ninth position of the night.
Romine’s wife, mother and two sisters were at the ballpark to witness the achievement. He joined Bert Campaneris, Cesar Tovar, Scott Sheldon and Halter in the exclusive group of players to have played every position in a game.
Romine also reached twice at the plate with a hit in the second inning and a walk in the fifth to start a two-run inning. Jeimer Candelario hit an RBI single and scored on Alex Presley’s fielder’s choice.
Tigers: Candelario (left wrist) did not start for the second time in three games but entered as a pinch hitter in the fifth inning. Ausmus said before the game that the switch-hitting Candelario would be fine hitting as a left-handed batter.
Twins: DH Sano (shin) made his first start since Aug. 19 and went 1 for 4 in a tuneup for Tuesday’s wild-card game against the Yankees.
Tigers: RHP Anibal Sanchez (3-6) gets the ball for the season finale on Sunday, looking for his fourth straight quality start.
Twins: RHP Bartolo Colon (4-6) takes the mound after leaving Tuesday’s start in Cleveland after one inning with an illness. Colon has struggled lately with a 9.64 ERA in the month of September.