Minnesota Twins’ torture — Breaking down their record 15-game postseason losing streak

What’s worse for a sports fan than a postseason losing streak of 15 games — and 15 years? You get all pumped up to watch your team in the playoffs, only to see the rug pulled out from under you time and time again.

That’s what Twins fans have been going through, as their 15-game postseason losing streak is the longest in MLB history. The Yankees have been the Twins’ particular nemesis during the painful stretch, handing Minnesota 12 of the 15 defeats, including their most recent one, Saturday night in Game 2 of the American League Division Series.

Here’s a game-by-game walk-through of the Twins’ tunnel of misery.

2019 AL Division Series

Game 2 (Oct. 5 at N.Y.) — Yankees 8, Twins 2

This one was over early. Didi Gregorius, whose three-run home run in the 2017 wild-card game erased the Twins’ first-inning lead, hit a back-breaking grand slam during a seven-run third.

Game 1 (Oct. 4 at N.Y.) — Yankees 10, Twins 4



DJ LeMahieu sparks the Yankees with a four-RBI night, including a solo home run, to help New York to a 10-4 Game 1 ALDS win. vs the Twins.

The Twins’ record-setting loss featured a franchise postseason-best three home runs, but Jose Berrios and a procession of relievers got pummeled by the Yankees. The big hit? A two-run, bases-loaded Gleyber Torres double in the fifth that broke a 3-3 tie.

2017 Wild-card game

Oct. 3 at N.Y. — Yankees 8, Twins 4

The Twins carried the baggage of a nine-game postseason losing streak to the Yankees (and 12 games overall) into the Bronx. Things started well enough for Minnesota — three runs in the top of the first off Yankees starter Luis Severino, who recorded just one out — but that didn’t last long. New York countered with three runs in the bottom of the first off Ervin Santana, then took the lead for good in the third on Greg Bird’s two-out single off Jose Berrios.

From the wild-card game through the World Series, we’ve got it all covered. Complete coverage

2010 AL Division Series

Game 3 (Oct. 9 at N.Y.) — Yankees 6, Twins 1

In his only season as an All-Star, New York’s Phil Hughes made his first (and best) postseason start, shutting down his future team on four hits over seven innings to complete the three-game sweep. Swept out of the playoffs by the Yankees for the second straight year, the Twins wouldn’t return to the postseason for seven years.

Game 2 (Oct. 7 at Min.) — Yankees 5, Twins 2

For the eighth straight postseason meeting, the Twins took the lead over the Yankees only to let it slip away. With the game tied at 2 in the bottom of the sixth, a tiring Carl Pavano gave up two runs and didn’t record another out as a Lance Berkman double and a Derek Jeter single put the Yankees on top for good. Minnesota went nine up, nine down over the last three innings.

Game 1 (Oct. 6 at Min.) — Yankees 6, Twins 4

Coming off one of his best seasons with the Twins, Francisco Liriano cruised through five two-hit innings, then hit a wall, coughing up a 3-0 lead. Minnesota tied it on a bases-loaded walk in the sixth, but the Yankees regained the lead in the seventh on a two-run homer by Mark Teixeira. The Twins stranded five runners over the last three innings.

2009 AL Division Series

Game 3 of the 2009 ALDS ended like so many other Twins playoff games of the last 15 years — in defeat. AP Photo/Kathy Willens

Game 3 (Oct. 11 at Min.) — Yankees 4, Twins 1

Andy Pettitte and Pavano were engaged in a solid pitchers’ duel before the Twins finally broke through to take a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the sixth. But as often has been the case in these meetings, the Yankees answered quickly, with Alex Rodriguez and Jorge Posada hitting solo home runs in the seventh. New York tacked on two insurance runs in the ninth before Mariano Rivera sent Minnesota packing.

Game 2 (Oct. 9 at N.Y.) — Yankees 4, Twins 3 (11 inn.)

Perhaps the most painful loss of the bunch. After Hughes got two quick outs in the top of the eighth of a 1-1 game, a walk and single set up Nick Punto to give the Twins the lead with a single, and a Denard Span single off Rivera made it 3-1. But in the bottom of the ninth, Twins closer Joe Nathan gave up a leadoff single to Teixeira and Rodriguez followed with a two-run blast to right-center to tie the game. In the 11th, the Twins loaded the bases with nobody out but squandered the opportunity, then Teixeira put them out of their misery with a laser beam of a walk-off homer off Jose Mijares.

Game 1 (Oct. 7 at N.Y.) — Yankees 7, Twins 2

The 103-win Yankees figured to roll over the 87-win Twins, but Minnesota struck first with two third-inning runs off CC Sabathia. Jeter countered with a two-run homer to tie it in the bottom of the inning, and the Yankees were off and running. The big blow was a two-run homer by Hideki Matsui in the fifth off Liriano.

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