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Santana masterful in Twins' victory

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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PHOENIX -- Johan Santana had more trouble convincing Minnesota manager Ron Gardenhire to let him finish the game than he did handling the Arizona Diamondbacks.

Santana threw a four-hitter and extended his remarkable road success and major league strikeout lead in the Twins' 10-0 victory Wednesday night -- but only after standing up to his manager.

"I'm telling my pitching coach, 'Let's get somebody else in the ballgame,"' Gardenhire said. "(Santana) just said, 'No way, I'm finishing this thing."'

Santana threw 106 pitches and never tired.

"He came back three times, and I said, 'Nope, I'm staying in,"' the left-hander said. "You don't get this kind of chance all the time. I know we were winning by 10 runs, but I felt pretty good."

Jacque Jones homered and drove in three runs, while Shannon Stewart had a solo shot and scored three runs and Joe Mauer and Juan Castro each had two RBI.

But it was mostly Santana's show as he improved to 15-0 in 17 road starts since losing at Kansas City on May 29, 2004.

Last year's AL Cy Young Award winner allowed only four baserunners, including two singles by Chris Snyder, walked none and basked in applause throughout the game, with the crowd of 23,404 split almost evenly in its loyalty.

Santana (7-2) struck out nine. He has 114 strikeouts, 10 more than the New York Mets' Pedro Martinez.

His only other shutout was last July 6 against Kansas City.

The complete game was Santana's second this season and third overall. He last finished at Tampa Bay on May 6.

"He comes as advertised," Arizona manager Bob Melvin said. "He's blowing up at 96 at times, and he's got a 20-mph gap with his changeup. He has a pretty good idea what he's doing, and the last couple of years he's just really gotten a lot of confidence."

Santana retired his first seven batters before Snyder lined a single to center in the third.

By that time, the Twins had a 5-0 lead.

Torii Hunter had a leadoff double in the second before Jones took an outside pitch into the left-field seats for a two-run homer.

"You go through periods where you're not hitting," Jones said about the 15-hit effort -- one off a season-high. "You're going to go through periods where everybody's hitting. I just know that we scored a lot of runs tonight, we scored a couple (nine) last night and won ourselves some ballgames."

Santana started the next rally against Arizona starter Claudio Vargas (0-4), leading off the third with a single. Stewart singled and Luis Rodriguez bunted his way on to load the bases.

Mauer then sent a grounder through the infield for two runs. Hunter followed with an RBI groundout, beating the throw to first to avoid a double play.

Stewart hit a solo shot in the fifth off Vargas, who went five innings, allowing eight hits and six runs. It was his first start for the Diamondbacks after being acquired off waivers from Washington on Friday.

Castro hit an RBI single in the sixth and a run-scoring double in the eighth, sandwiched around Jones' seventh-inning sacrifice fly.

Pinch-hitter Michael Ryan, batting in Jones' spot, made it 10-0 with a sacrifice fly.

Santana allowed a single to Troy Glaus in the fourth and a two-out single to Snyder in the fifth, then hit a groove, retiring 10 consecutive batters.

"He's a great pitcher with great stuff," Snyder said. "He knows how to pitch. You've just got to be selective and get him early."

Notes

  • Santana went 1-for-4 in his first at-bats of the season, giving himself a .300 career average (6-for-20).
  • Glaus' single in the fourth was his 800th hit. ... The Twins are 4-1 in interleague play.
  • Jones and Hunter have eight-game hitting streaks.
  • The 10 runs matched a season-best, done twice in April.
 
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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Johan Santana embraces catcher Joe Mauer after pitching a complete-game shutout. (AP)
Johan Santana embraces catcher Joe Mauer after pitching a complete-game shutout. (AP)

Players of the Game
Minnesota

S. Stewart
AB 4
R 3
H 3
HR 1
RBI 1
Minnesota

J. Santana
IP 9.0
H 4
ER 0
BB 0
K 9
 
Minnesota Twins
Shannon Stewart, LF4331000 .294
   a- Michael Ryan, PH-LF0001000 .500
Luis Rodriguez, 2B5120001 .333
Joe Mauer, C5022011 .294
Torii Hunter, CF3111001 .281
   b- Lew Ford, PH-CF1000010 .281
Jacque Jones, RF4113001 .293
Justin Morneau, 1B4110002 .282
Michael Cuddyer, 3B4120020 .266
Juan Castro, SS4122000 .269
Johan Santana, P4110002 .250
Totals38101510048 
a-hit a sacrifice fly for Stewart in the 8th
b-hit by pitch for Hunter in the 7th
Batting
2B - Luis Rodriguez (1, Vargas), Torii Hunter (16, Vargas), Juan Castro (7, Herges)
HR - Shannon Stewart (9, Vargas), Jacque Jones (7, Vargas)
SF - Michael Ryan (1), Jacque Jones (3)
RBI - Shannon Stewart (29), Michael Ryan (3), Joe Mauer 2 (20), Torii Hunter (37), Jacque Jones 3 (30), Juan Castro 2 (13)
Team LOB - 4
Fielding
DP - Castro-Rodriguez-Morneau
Minnesota Twins
Johan Santana (W,7-2) 9400090 3.31
Pitches-Strikes - Johan Santana 107-78
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Johan Santana 9-8
Batters Faced - Johan Santana 30
Arizona Diamondbacks
Alex Cintron, 2B4010001 .284
Royce Clayton, SS4000031 .228
Luis Gonzalez, LF3000020 .309
    Matt Herges, P0000000 .000
    Jose Valverde, P0000000 .000
   a- Kelly Stinnett, PH1000001 .222
Troy Glaus, 3B3010010 .248
Tony Clark, 1B3000011 .363
Shawn Green, RF3000000 .263
Jose Cruz Jr., CF3000010 .243
Chris Snyder, C3020000 .236
Claudio Vargas, P0000000 .500
   b- Quinton McCracken, PH1000011 .202
    Mike Koplove, P0000000 .000
    Scott Hairston, LF1000000 .222
Totals29040095 
a-grounded into a double play for Valverde in the 9th
b-struck out for Vargas in the 5th
Batting
SH - Claudio Vargas (1)
Team LOB - 3
Fielding
DP - Cintron-Clayton-Clark, Cintron-Clayton-Clark
E - Troy Glaus (7, Wild throw)
Arizona Diamondbacks
Claudio Vargas (L,0-4) 5866032 9.68
Mike Koplove 2521000 5.06
Matt Herges 1222000 5.54
Jose Valverde 1000010 6.00
HBP - Ford (by Mike Koplove)
WP - Claudio Vargas (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Claudio Vargas 94-64, Mike Koplove 32-21, Matt Herges 18-12, Jose Valverde 10-6
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Claudio Vargas 7-4, Mike Koplove 1-4, Matt Herges 1-2, Jose Valverde 1-1
Batters Faced - Claudio Vargas 22, Mike Koplove 11, Matt Herges 5, Jose Valverde 3
Game Information
Attendance - 23404
Game Time - 2:31
Temperature - 76
Umpires - Home - Dana DeMuth, First Base - Marty Foster, Second Base - Jim Joyce, Third Base - Lazaro Diaz