Miguel Sano‘s spectacular rookie season has been halted by a hamstring injury, which initially caused him to have a few very rough games in a row and then forced him out of the Twins’ lineup.
Wednesday night, with the Twins and Royals tied at 2-2 in the 12th inning, Minnesota manager Paul Molitor turned to a less-than-full-strength Sano off the bench as a pinch-hitter … and he delivered a game-winning home run.
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As the 22-year-old rookie has done so often Sano took the opposing pitcher out to the deep water of a 3-2 count and then drowned him with a 440-foot homer–his 16th homer in 57 games, which is by far a Twins team record (no one else has more than 11 through 57 career games).
Sano has a .981 OPS through 57 games. If he had enough playing time to qualify for the batting title that would rank second in the American League, sandwiched between Miguel Cabrera at 1.020 and Josh Donaldson at .966. He was born in 1993.