Correia fires three scoreless frames vs. Jays
In game featuring two uses of expanded replay Mitchell notches four RBIs
FORT MYERS, Fla. -- Right-hander Kevin Correia threw three hitless innings and Jermaine Mitchell homered and drove in four runs to help lead the split-squad Twins to a 12-2 win over the Blue Jays on Monday at Hammond Stadium.
Baseball's new expanded replay was also put to use for the first time in the sixth inning. Blue Jays manager John Gibbons challenged the call on the field after Chris Rahl was ruled safe at first base with first-base umpire Fieldin Culbreth ruling that first baseman Jared Goedert came off the bag to field the throw. The play was ultimately upheld after a review that lasted two minutes and 34 seconds.
A second review came in the eighth inning, when it was ruled that Doug Bernier was safe on a grounder hit to shortstop Kevin Nolan. After a review, the play was upheld following a two-minute, three-second review.
Correia, making his Grapefruit League debut, was sharp, only allowing one walk and no hits in his three innings of work.
Correia fared much better than Toronto left-hander J.A. Happ, who recorded just one out in his second start. Happ struggled with his control, as he issued four walks in a four-run first inning for the Twins.
Aaron Hicks led off with a single for the Twins in the first inning before scoring on a double from Brian Dozier, who came all the way around to score on a throwing error from shortstop Maicer Izturis on the relay throw home.
Happ then walked Joe Mauer, Oswaldo Arcia and Kurt Suzuki to load the bases with one out before walking Deibinson Romero to bring home a run. Happ was then taken out in favor of right-hander Bobby Korecky, who gave up a sac fly to Mitchell before getting out of the inning.
"It's early for pitchers and hitters and umpires, so you're just getting a handle on what's going on," Correia said. "So you see weird things like happen. Happ ended up walking a few guys in the first. But he's not a young guy, he's been around. So it's just everyone trying to get those nerves out those first couple games."
The Twins added three runs against right-hander Dustin McGowan in the third inning with Mitchell lacing a two-run double before Hicks provided an RBI groundout. Mitchell later hit a solo homer off right-hander Mickey Storey in the fifth inning for his first homer of the spring.
The Blue Jays didn't score until the fourth inning, when Edwin Encarnacion smashed a two-run blast off left-hander Brian Duensing.
Up next: The Twins hit the road on Tuesday, making the trip across the state to play the Marlins at Roger Dean Stadium in Jupiter, Fla. Right-hander Phil Hughes, who joined the club on a three-year, $24 million deal this offseason, is set to make his Minnesota debut. Right-handers Samuel Deduno, Ryan Pressly and Michael Tonkin are also on the list to pitch for the Twins.