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Back-to-back homers lift Twins over O's

SportsLine.com wire reports
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BALTIMORE -- Limited to one hit over the first six innings, the Minnesota Twins revived their slumbering offense in time to beat the Baltimore Orioles, who lost a seemingly safe lead and two starting outfielders during a lamentable night.

Pinch-hitter Jacque Jones and Shannon Stewart homered on successive pitches from Steve Kline in the 10th inning, lifting the Twins to a 6-4 victory Tuesday.

The Twins trailed 4-2 in the seventh before rallying to earn their 10th win in 14 games.

"It's just the type of team we have," Jones said. "We never give up, and that's against one of the toughest teams in baseball."

It was an awful evening for the first-place Orioles, for reasons that extended beyond the blown lead and the two unearned runs that Minnesota scored on errors by third baseman Melvin Mora.

During the game, the Orioles put right fielder Sammy Sosa on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to May 5, with an abscess and staph infection in his left foot.

Also, Baltimore center fielder Luis Matos broke his right ring finger when hit by a pitch from Jesse Crain in the eighth. He will be placed on the disabled list and is expected to be sidelined for six weeks.

"I'm not really happy about that," manager Lee Mazzilli said. "It's unfortunate, you lose a guy like Sammy and then Luis, who was playing so well."

Matos was batting .289. He will probably be replaced in center by David Newhan.

"We're going to have to pull our straps up. You lose two starting players, what's the alternative?" Mazzilli said. "We're going to fight it and grind it out, that's for sure. I guarantee you that."

Jones led off the 10th with Minnesota's first pinch-hit homer of the season, a shot to right-center on a 3-2 count. Stewart then put the next pitch from Kline (2-2) into the seats in left.

Crain (2-0) pitched two scoreless innings and Joe Nathan got three outs for his 10th save in 11 chances. Neither pitcher has allowed an earned run this year.

All the Orioles' runs came on homers off Twins starter Brad Radke. Javy Lopez hit a two-run drive in the second inning, Rafael Palmeiro led off the fourth with the 553rd of his career, and Brian Roberts connected to open the fifth.

"Three bad pitches, three home runs," Radke said.

Orioles starter Erik Bedard gave up one hit and two unearned runs through six innings, and left after the seventh with a 4-3 lead. His bid to win a fourth straight start, however, was undone by the bullpen.

Jorge Julio got one out in the eighth before Nick Punto singled. After B.J. Ryan replaced Julio, Punto stole second and took third on a wild pitch before Joe Mauer tied it with a sacrifice fly.

"It looked like we were kind of scuffling along there; things really weren't going out way," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "But the guys kept battling and we kept pinching and we kept them off the scoreboard after they got four and gave ourselves a chance to win."

Minnesota went up 1-0 in the first when Stewart reached second on an error by Mora and scored on a single by Justin Morneau -- the Twins' last hit until Matthew LeCroy one-out single in the seventh.

Lopez gave Baltimore the lead with his seventh homer after Miguel Tejada led off the second with an infield hit.

Palmeiro hit his second home run of the season in the fourth. A throwing error by Mora led to an unearned run in the fifth, but Roberts restored the two-run cushion in the bottom half. His 10 home runs are twice his previous career high, set in 2003.

Minnesota closed to 4-3 in the seventh. Torii Hunter drew a one-out walk and took third on a single by LeCroy before Lew Ford hit a sacrifice fly. Michael Cuddyer added a single before Bedard finished his impressive stint by striking out Jason Bartlett.

Notes

  • Bedard has yielded only two earned runs over his last 30 innings.
  • Palmeiro has eight homers in 52 at-bats against Radke.
  • Baltimore starters have a 2.11 ERA during the homestand.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Jacque Jones leads off the 10th inning with a home run to right-center.  (AP)
Jacque Jones leads off the 10th inning with a home run to right-center. (AP)

Players of the Game
Minnesota

J. Jones
AB 1
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 1
Baltimore

B. Roberts
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
 
Minnesota Twins
Shannon Stewart, LF5211000 .270
Nick Punto, 2B-SS4110010 .235
Joe Mauer, C4001011 .326
Justin Morneau, 1B5011010 .400
Torii Hunter, CF3100101 .248
Matthew LeCroy, DH3110100 .300
Lew Ford, RF3011010 .266
Michael Cuddyer, 3B3011001 .233
    Juan Castro, 3B0000000 .219
Jason Bartlett, SS3000023 .239
   a- Jacque Jones, PH1111000 .337
    Luis Rivas, 2B0000000 .204
Totals34676266 
a-homered for Bartlett in the 10th
Batting
HR - Shannon Stewart (3, Kline), Jacque Jones (4, Kline)
SF - Joe Mauer (2), Lew Ford (1), Michael Cuddyer (1)
SH - Nick Punto (2)
RBI - Shannon Stewart (13), Joe Mauer (13), Justin Morneau (21), Lew Ford (19), Michael Cuddyer (9), Jacque Jones (15)
2-OUT RBI - Justin Morneau (10)
SB - Nick Punto (2, 2nd base off Ryan/Lopez)
Team LOB - 4
Fielding
E - Michael Cuddyer (7, wild throw)
Minnesota Twins
Brad Radke 6944033 3.86
J.C. Romero 1000200 1.32
Jesse Crain (W,2-0) 2100010 0.00
Joe Nathan (S,10) 1100020 0.00
IBB - Tejada by J.C. Romero
Pitches-Strikes - Brad Radke 90-66, J.C. Romero 14-5, Jesse Crain 22-14, Joe Nathan 16-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Brad Radke 6-9, J.C. Romero 1-2, Jesse Crain 3-3
Batters Faced - Brad Radke 27, J.C. Romero 5, Jesse Crain 8, Joe Nathan 4
Baltimore Orioles
Brian Roberts, 2B4121102 .369
Larry Bigbie, LF4010011 .250
Melvin Mora, 3B5010012 .300
Miguel Tejada, SS4110113 .348
Rafael Palmeiro, 1B5111013 .221
Javy Lopez, C4112000 .310
    David Newhan, PR-CF1010000 .217
B.J. Surhoff, RF5010011 .240
Luis Matos, CF3020000 .289
   a- Geronimo Gil, PH-C2000003 .216
Jay Gibbons, DH4000014 .258
Totals4141142619 
a-hit into fielder's choice for Matos in the 8th
Batting
HR - Brian Roberts (10, Radke), Rafael Palmeiro (2, Radke), Javy Lopez (7, Radke)
SH - Larry Bigbie (2)
RBI - Brian Roberts (29), Rafael Palmeiro (8), Javy Lopez 2 (21)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
DP - Tejada-Palmeiro
E - Melvin Mora 2 (4, misplayed grounder)
Baltimore Orioles
Erik Bedard 7331250 2.31
Jorge Julio (H,4) 0.1111000 2.12
B.J. Ryan (BS,1) 0.2000000 1.93
Todd Williams 1100000 3.68
Steve Kline (L,2-2) 1222012 6.94
WP - B.J. Ryan (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Erik Bedard 104-69, Jorge Julio 8-5, B.J. Ryan 9-7, Todd Williams 17-11, Steve Kline 19-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Erik Bedard 11-6, Todd Williams 3-0, Steve Kline 2-0
Batters Faced - Erik Bedard 27, Jorge Julio 2, B.J. Ryan 2, Todd Williams 4, Steve Kline 5
Game Information
Attendance - 22410
Game Time - 3:18
Temperature - 74
Umpires - Home - Jim Reynolds, First Base - Wally Bell, Second Base - Kerwin Danley, Third Base - Chris Guccione