What? No Homers? Twins Still Win
DETROIT (AP) — Jake Cave and Nelson Cruz each drove in two runs and the homer-happy Minnesota Twins won without clearing the fences, beating the Detroit Tigers 8-3 on Sunday.
A day after connecting six times to set a single-season major league record with 268 home runs, the Twins got 12 hits — a double by Luis Arraez was their only extra-base hit.
The Twins have won five of six on their current 10-game road trip and increased their lead in the AL Central to 5 ½ games over Cleveland.
Detroit has lost seven of eight and still needs four wins at Comerica Park to avoid becoming the first big league team to lose 60 games at home in a season.
Cave's two-run single highlighted a five-run second inning.
Michael Pineda (11-5) got the win, giving up two runs on five hits and a walk in six innings. He struck out nine.
Twins reliever Brusdar Graterol struck out one in a scoreless ninth in his major league debut.
Spencer Turnbull (3-14) took the loss, allowing six runs on eight hits and three walks in 4 2/3 innings. He is tied with Brad Keller and Aaron Sanchez for the major league lead in losses.
The Twins took a 5-0 lead in the second. Cave started the scoring before Turnbull hit Willians Astudillo with a pitch. Jason Castro, Jorge Polanco and Cruz added RBI singles later in the inning.
Detroit got a run back in the bottom half on back-to-back doubles by Dawel Lugo and Brandon Dixon.
Jordy Mercer's solo homer off Sam Dyson pulled the Tigers within three runs in the seventh.
Cruz and Eddie Rosario added RBI singles in the eighth.
Twins: CF Max Kepler left the game with soreness in his left leg and is day-to-day. . The Twins activated Astudillo and LaMonte Wade Jr. from the IL and placed RHP Kyle Gibson (ulcerative colitis) on the IL. . CF Byron Buxton returned to the lineup, playing the ninth inning on defense.
Tigers: CF JaCoby Jones (wrist) was moved to the 60-day IL to make room for RHP Bryan Garcia on the 40-man roster. Garcia was selected from Triple-A Toledo as the Tigers expanded their roster.
The teams finish their four-game series on Monday afternoon, with the Twins starting Jake Odorizzi (14-6, 3.55) against Jordan Zimmermann (1-9, 6.24).