Rocco Baldelli had never seen it before. Mitch Garver didn't know how to explain it. J.A. Happ shied away from even thinking about it too hard.
Whether bewildering, confusing, uncomfortable or all of the above, yet another late-inning collapse snatched another needed victory from the Twins' clutches, as they lost 6-3 in 10 innings Tuesday to the Texas Rangers.
The Twins are now 0-6 in extra innings, bungling another lead with bullpen letdowns and infield errors.
"To be honest, I've never really seen it all kind of lumped together like this," said Baldelli, the Twins manager. "The truth of the matter is, you probably look at a lot of these plays individually, and you'd say, 'That's a one-off situation or a one-off play,' and that's probably what makes the most sense to me to be very clear on that.
"When they happen in a cluster like this, I don't think anyone can truly know why that's happening."
The Twins took a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the first off Byron Buxton's two-run homer. Willians Astudillo added a solo shot in the fifth to make it 3-1. But while the Twins waned, the Rangers revived in front of an announced crowd of 8,022 at Target Field.
Besides the home runs, the Twins' only other hit in nine innings was a line-drive single by Garver in the fourth. He also singled in the Twins' scoreless 10th.
The Twins led 3-1 through eight innings, but Willie Calhoun homered off Taylor Rogers to lead off the Texas ninth. Josh Donaldson bobbled a ground ball at third base to allow Charlie Culberson to reach first, which led to Isiah Kiner-Falefa's game-tying sacrifice fly.
Brandon Waddell came in to pitch the 10th for the Twins and gave up a two-run homer to Adolis Garcia. He also gave up two doubles, including one from Culberson to score the final run.
Happ started for the Twins and went 5⅓ innings, allowing one earned run. The Twins then did a familiar dance, cycling through the bullpen with Hansel Robles, Tyler Duffey, Rogers, Waddell and Jorge Alcala all making mostly chaotic appearances.
Former Twins pitcher Kyle Gibson started against his former team for the first time and lasted eight innings, allowing only three hits.
The Twins' general confoundedness about why these spontaneous combustions keep happening is a bit understandable. They tried to give Rogers more late-game appearances when Alexander Colome struggled to close.
"That stuff you just, you assume over the course of 162 [games]," Happ said, "you'd hope that they don't add up or happen too often."
Yet it has.
Garver deemed Tuesday "a tough 'L'" but in the same breath said the team knew how to move past this. Happ referenced how the Twins would show up to the clubhouse before Wednesday's game and resume their usual routines.
They'll hope the next outing, though, is different.
"For the first month of the season, the ball really hasn't been going our way," Garver said. "There's a bloop here and an error there. And sometimes the guys make great plays, we're hitting the ball hard, they're catching it. "It does add up a little bit."