Twins advance for 1st time in 21 years with 2-0 win to sweep Blue Jays behind Gray, Correa

[anvplayer video=”5194919″ station=”998128″]

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Carlos Correa contributed an RBI single and a quick-twitch tag off a pickoff throw from Sonny Gray, and the Minnesota Twins swept the Toronto Blue Jays with a 2-0 win in Game 2 of their AL Wild Card Series on Wednesday.

The Twins advanced — for the first time in 21 years — to play the defending World Series champion Astros. Game 1 of the best-of-five AL Division Series is in Houston on Saturday.

It’s familiar territory for Correa, who played for Houston for seven seasons before signing with Minnesota in free agency. Correa helped the Astros to three World Series appearances, winning it all in 2017, and he appears to be working on another memorable October.

The two-time All-Star, who went 3 for 7 with a hit-by-pitch in the Wild Card Series, ripped a bases-loaded single in a two-run fourth. Despite being outhit 15-12 by the Blue Jays over the two games, the patient Twins delivered precisely when they needed to at the plate and leaned back to watch their bullpen dominate with 7 1/3 scoreless innings in the series.

Jhoan Duran, after an extended examination of his hand by Minnesota’s medical staff following his warmup pitches, struck out the side in the ninth to trigger the celebration around the mound.

The Blue Jays, who lost their seventh straight game in the playoffs since the AL Championship Series in 2016, left nine runners on base after stranding nine men in Game 1. Matt Chapman had a liner go just foul before grounding into an inning-ending double play with the bases loaded in the sixth against Caleb Thielbar.

Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.