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Minnesota at Tampa Bay

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Minnesota «0003003208120
Tampa Bay000000000033

Santana earns ML-best 17th win with masterful outing vs. Rays

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
  •  

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- Johan Santana was so dominant, even the guy who managed the Devil Rays' only two hits off him had to feel lucky.

"The ball happened to find my bat and find a hole," Delmon Young said.

Santana became the first 17-game winner in the major leagues Tuesday night, allowing two hits over eight scoreless innings as Minnesota beat Tampa Bay 8-0 - the Twins' 14th win in a row over Tampa Bay.

"Games start with your pitching and he was really getting after it pretty good tonight," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "He had great stuff, and I think you saw that according to some of the swings."

Santana (17-5) struck out 12 and walked one. The left-hander, 8-0 since the All-Star break, retired his first 10 hitters before a double with one out in the fourth by Young. Santana then got eight straight outs before Young singled to lead off the seventh.

The only other batter to reach was B.J. Upton, who drew a two-out walk in the eighth.

"He had everything working tonight," Young said. "You can tell by the swings we were taking. He's one of the best pitchers in the game because he's attacking the strike zone. He's got two great off-speed pitches."

Santana recorded 10 or more strikeouts in eight games this season and 31 times in his career. The Twins decided to pull Santana because of some minor left hip stiffness.

"In all those long innings (when the Twins scored), it's not easy to stay loose," Santana said. "I get everything going, I feel fine, but between innings it was there. I wanted to (finish the game), but at the same time we still have some games to go and I have to pitch on Sunday."

The Devil Rays last win against Minnesota came June 3, 2004, when they beat Santana.

"He was very impressive today," Tampa Bay manager Joe Maddon said. "I've seen him good, but that's almost as good as I've seen him."

Minnesota took a 1½ game lead in the AL wild-card race over the Chicago White Sox, who lost 1-0 to Boston on Tuesday night. The Red Sox remained six games behind.

The Twins also crept within four games of AL Central-leading Detroit after the Tigers lost to Seattle, 4-3.

"We're trying to take care of our own business," Gardenhire said. "You scoreboard-watch after the fact, but we've just got to take care of our own business, we know that. If we keep winning baseball games and you've got a lead, they can't catch you."

Jason Tyner had an RBI double and Jason Bartlett hit a sacrifice fly off Jae Seo (1-6) during a three-run fourth that put the Twins ahead 3-0.

Seo, reinstated from the 15-day disabled list before the game, gave up three runs and eight hits in six innings. He had been out since straining his left groin on Aug. 20.

Michael Cuddyer hit an RBI double and Justin Morneau had a run-scoring triple in a three-run seventh to make it 6-0.

Gardenhire was ejected for arguing that Cuddyer's hit was actually a homer. TV replays that the ball might have cleared the yellow line on the left-field fence before rebounding onto the playing field.

Garndehire has been tossed eight times this season.

Twins catcher Joe Mauer went 1-for-4, including a two-run double in the eighth, and had his average drop one point to .345. He has three hits in his last 26 at-bats.

Notes

  • Twins LHP Francisco Liriano (left elbow strain) is scheduled to throw two or three innings in a simulated game Wednesday. He could make a minor league rehab start as soon as Saturday and might rejoin the rotation next week.
  • Tampa Bay LHP Scott Kazmir (sore left shoulder) said his rehab is going "fantastic" and hopes to resume playing catch soon. It hasn't been decided if he will pitch again this season.
  • Gardenhire said it is way too early to discuss a potential playoff rotation. "I will go out on a limb and say Santana would be the first guy out there," Gardenhire said with a smile.
 
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 K's 12 Rays as he collects his 17th win, a major-league best.  (AP)
Johan Santana K's 12 Rays as he collects his 17th win, a major-league best. (AP)

Players of the Game
Minnesota

J. Santana
IP 8.0
H 2
ER 0
BB 1
K 12
Minnesota

M. Cuddyer
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 0
RBI 1
 
Minnesota Twins
Luis Castillo, 2B3110101 .296
Nick Punto, 3B5010022 .296
Joe Mauer, C4112103 .345
Michael Cuddyer, RF4221102 .276
Justin Morneau, 1B5221012 .318
Torii Hunter, CF4010002 .269
    Josh Rabe, LF1000000 .304
Rondell White, LF3110101 .221
    Lew Ford, LF-CF1000000 .221
Jason Tyner, DH4011001 .306
   a- Alexi Casilla, PH-DH1000000 .000
Jason Bartlett, SS3121000 .342
Totals3881264314 
a-grounded out for Tyner in the 9th
Batting
2B - Joe Mauer (30, Jackson), Michael Cuddyer 2 (36, Seo, Salas), Jason Tyner (4, Seo), Jason Bartlett (18, Seo)
3B - Justin Morneau (1, Salas)
SF - Jason Bartlett (4)
SH - Luis Castillo (9)
RBI - Joe Mauer 2 (75), Michael Cuddyer (92), Justin Morneau (115), Jason Tyner (12), Jason Bartlett (23)
2-OUT RBI - Joe Mauer 2 (34), Michael Cuddyer (47), Justin Morneau (48)
Team LOB - 9
Minnesota Twins
Johan Santana (W,17-5) 82001120 2.84
Matt Guerrier 1100000 2.92
WP - Johan Santana (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Johan Santana 95-70, Matt Guerrier 9-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Johan Santana 7-5
Batters Faced - Johan Santana 27, Matt Guerrier 4
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Rocco Baldelli, CF3000020 .300
   a- Shawn Riggans, PH10100001.000
Delmon Young, RF4020001 .387
Carl Crawford, LF4000003 .303
Ty Wigginton, 1B4000022 .264
Dioner Navarro, C3000021 .268
Jorge Cantu, 2B3000020 .241
Damon Hollins, DH3000010 .222
B.J. Upton, 3B2000120 .240
Ben Zobrist, SS3000011 .231
Totals300301128 
a-singled for Baldelli in the 9th
Batting
2B - Delmon Young (3, Santana)
Team LOB - 4
Fielding
DP - Seo-Zobrist-Wigginton
E - Carl Crawford (3, ), B.J. Upton (11, ), Delmon Young (1, )
Tampa Bay Devil Rays
Jae Seo (L,3-10) 6831120 4.96
Juan Salas 1232110 18.00
Edwin Jackson 1222200 7.18
Jon Switzer 1000000 5.26
IBB - R. White by Jae Seo
WP - Juan Salas (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Jae Seo 94-65, Juan Salas 26-14, Edwin Jackson 27-15, Jon Switzer 10-5
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jae Seo 9-7, Juan Salas 2-1, Edwin Jackson 3-0, Jon Switzer 3-0
Batters Faced - Jae Seo 27, Juan Salas 7, Edwin Jackson 7, Jon Switzer 3
Game Information
Attendance - 8256
Game Time - 2:34
Temperature - 72
Umpires - Home - Gary Cederstrom, First Base - Laz Diaz, Second Base - Rick Reed, Third Base - Tim Tschida