MINNEAPOLIS -- In a game they needed to win, the Minnesota Twins delivered an offensive performance their pitchers wish they saw more of.
Shannon Stewart drove in the go-ahead run with a sixth-inning single and Mike Redmond delivered a three-run double in the seventh, leading the Twins to a 7-5 victory over the Cleveland Indians on Sunday.
The Twins won the final two games of the three-game series between AL Central rivals. Cleveland is two games behind the New York Yankees in the wild-card race, while Minnesota is five back.
"We're battling, and we got some big hits," manager Ron Gardenhire said. "Our fans saw a pretty fired-up bunch of guys out there today."
Redmond's hit off the glove of right fielder Casey Blake broke open a game that included four lead changes through the first six innings, the last coming when Stewart's single to right-center scored two runs and put Minnesota ahead 4-3.
Indians starter Jake Westbrook (13-14) gave up 10 hits for the third time in four games and blew two leads to snap a three-game win streak.
Blake took the blame for missing Redmond's double, saying he "didn't think (Redmond) could get one over my head."
"I was guarding against the ball in front of me instead of over my head," Blake said. "The way it hit my glove, I thought I caught it, but it hit the top of my glove or the front or something."
The Indians lost back-to-back games for the first time since Aug. 14. After losing 3-2 thanks to a pair of errors in the ninth inning on Saturday, the Indians could blame a handful of defensive miscues in this one, too.
The Twins scored a run on Victor Martinez's errant pickoff attempt in the third inning, and set up another one when Lew Ford advanced to second on Aaron Boone's throwing error in the fourth. Ford also doubled over the head of center fielder Grady Sizemore in the eighth inning and later scored.
"The defense has been pretty consistent, but we've had a rough stretch the past couple of days," Indians manager Eric Wedge said. "When that happens, it's tough to win ballgames."
Baker gave up a home run off the right-field upper deck facing to Travis Hafner in the second inning. He shut the Indians out from there until the sixth, when they chased him and scored twice to take a 3-2 lead.
"You try to pitch the same way, whether you get one or two runs or whether you get seven," Baker said. "I was fortunate the offense came through today."
He lasted 5 1/3 innings, and the 73 pitches he threw were the fewest of his four major-league starts, but Baker came out with a no-decision thanks to an uncharacteristic showing from the Twins offense.
"The kid pitched OK," Gardenhire said. "He gave us a chance to win."
|Twins catcher Mike Redmond clears the bases with a double in the seventh inning. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
Nike Cleveland Indians T-Shirt
$29.95 Shop Now!
|Grady Sizemore, CF||5||1||1||0||0||2||1||.286|
|Coco Crisp, LF||4||1||1||0||0||0||0||.291|
|Jhonny Peralta, SS||3||1||0||1||1||0||0||.287|
|Travis Hafner, DH||3||1||1||1||1||1||2||.311|
|Victor Martinez, C||3||0||1||1||1||0||0||.294|
|Ron Belliard, 2B||4||0||1||1||0||0||1||.282|
|Ben Broussard, 1B||4||1||1||1||0||1||3||.260|
|Aaron Boone, 3B||4||0||1||0||0||0||0||.246|
|Casey Blake, RF||3||0||0||0||0||2||2||.245|
|2B - Coco Crisp (34, Baker)|
|HR - Travis Hafner (24, Baker), Ben Broussard (16, Nathan)|
|RBI - Jhonny Peralta (66), Travis Hafner (84), Victor Martinez (69), Ron Belliard (63), Ben Broussard (53)|
|Team LOB - 5|
|E - Aaron Boone (13, Wild throw), Victor Martinez (5, Wild throw on pickoff attempt)|
|Jake Westbrook (L,13-14)||6||10||4||3||1||4||0||4.64|
|IBB - Morneau by Scott Sauerbeck|
|Pitches-Strikes - Jake Westbrook 96-60, Scott Sauerbeck 15-5, Rafael Betancourt 13-11, Arthur Rhodes 9-6|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jake Westbrook 11-3, Arthur Rhodes 2-1|
|Batters Faced - Jake Westbrook 29, Scott Sauerbeck 4, Rafael Betancourt 3, Arthur Rhodes 3|
|Shannon Stewart, LF||5||0||1||2||0||1||2||.282|
|Nick Punto, 2B||5||0||2||0||0||1||2||.248|
|Joe Mauer, DH||5||0||0||0||0||0||2||.301|
|Jacque Jones, RF||3||1||0||0||1||2||2||.251|
|Lew Ford, CF||4||3||3||0||0||0||0||.268|
|Justin Morneau, 1B||3||1||1||0||1||0||2||.240|
|Juan Castro, 3B||4||1||2||1||0||1||3||.271|
|Mike Redmond, C||4||0||2||3||0||0||3||.300|
|Jason Bartlett, SS||3||1||1||0||1||1||2||.273|
|2B - Lew Ford (27, Sauerbeck), Juan Castro (17, Westbrook), Mike Redmond (8, Betancourt)|
|RBI - Shannon Stewart 2 (54), Juan Castro (28), Mike Redmond 3 (23)|
|2-OUT RBI - Shannon Stewart 2 (23), Mike Redmond 3 (6)|
|SB - Jason Bartlett (3, 2nd base off Westbrook/Martinez)|
|Team LOB - 8|
|DP - Morneau-Bartlett, Punto-Bartlett-Morneau|
|E - Juan Castro (8, Misplayed grounder)|
|Jesse Crain (W,10-4)||1.2||0||0||0||0||0||0||2.44|
|Joe Nathan (S,35)||1||1||1||1||0||2||1||2.54|
|HBP - Blake (by Jesse Crain)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Scott Baker 73-53, Jesse Crain 19-11, Juan Rincon 24-14, Joe Nathan 14-10|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Scott Baker 5-8, Jesse Crain 4-0, Juan Rincon 1-1, Joe Nathan 1-0|
|Batters Faced - Scott Baker 23, Jesse Crain 5, Juan Rincon 5, Joe Nathan 4|
|Attendance - 21717|
|Game Time - 2:40|
|Temperature - 69|
|Umpires - Home - Marvin Hudson, First Base - Larry Young, Second Base - Eric Cooper, Third Base - Field Culbreth|