It couldn’t have ended any other way. Of course it ended with a Twin striking out. Of course it ended with three Twins striking out. Of course it ended with Max Kepler resting the bat on his shoulder, watching a strike sail by.

After coming back to Minneapolis with all the momentum after their Game 2 victory, the Twins offense - so frustrating for most of the year - went back into the same routine that frustrated fans for most of the year. They struck out 14 times in Game 3, and 14 more in Game 4, and that includes seven - SEVEN! - of the final nine outs.

Edouard Julien’s one-out solo home run in the sixth inning made it 3-2. The Twins failed to get a single hit the rest of the way; only three of the final 12 batters even managed to hit the ball in fair territory. Kepler managed to strike out looking twice along the way.

Julien had two hits and a walk, Royce Lewis walked and hit a solo home run of his own, and the rest of the Twins lineup had 23 plate appearances and went 0-for-23.

The Twins will end the postseason with all sorts of garishly awful playoff statistics. They were 5-for-38 (.132) with runners in scoring position in the playoffs, with a .211 slugging percentage. They struck out 73 times in 217 plate appearances; they averaged nearly three strikeouts for every two innings they played.

Alex Kirilloff and Matt Wallner went hitless in the postseason. Donovan Solano went 1-for-10, Ryan Jeffers 2-for-19, Michael A. Taylor 2-for-13.

That’s too many passengers. That’s too many automatic outs. Once again, the thing that has killed the Twins in the postseason so many times reared its ugly head again: no offense.

The final two days of the season were a reminder of the bad old days this year, the doldrums of April through the end of July, when the team struck out too much and couldn’t hit with runners on base. The Twins had a .709 OPS as a team before the All-Star break, and an .809 OPS after the All-Star Break… and in the postseason, that dropped back to .672.

The 2023 Twins ended the dumb playoff streak. More than anything, that’s what fans wanted this season, and so I guess we’ll have to think fondly of this year’s team.

That said, I don’t think I can watch them strike out 1,800 more times next season. It’s been painful.