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Cleveland at Minnesota

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Cleveland (23-33)000002100370
Minnesota (27-28) «43000301x11131

Twins 11, Indians 3

CBSSports.com wire reports
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Jason Kubel didn't want to make another trip to the disabled list with knee pain. If he continues to hit the way he did Thursday, he won't have to worry about any down time.

Kubel hit a pair of three-run homers to back Scott Baker, who pitched seven effective innings for the Minnesota Twins in an 11-3 victory over the Cleveland Indians.

Kubel injured his left knee chasing a flyball at Chicago on May 21 and missed the next three games. Since he returned, he was 4-for-26 until hitting a single in the fourth inning Wednesday night.

On Thursday, Kubel's first homer capped a four-run first against Fausto Carmona. The cleanup batter followed an inning later with his second to give Minnesota a 7-0 lead.

"The swing's come back and that's all I can ask for," Kubel said.

It was his fourth career two-homer game and second of the season.

"He was out of whack a little bit, getting his legs underneath him," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "I think he was rolling over balls and it looked like he got a little pull happy because of that. But he says he's feeling better. And he doesn't want to go on the DL, so that always motivates people to swing better."

Kubel had surgery on his left knee and missed the entire 2005 season. After recovering from the injury, he broke through with 20 home runs last season.

Assured of an everyday spot in the lineup this year, Kubel has responded.

"Just from the beginning of the season, it's been a different feeling," he said.

Baker (3-6) has felt different his past few starts.

The right-hander took advantage of the early run support, staying around the strike zone and retiring his first eight batters. He didn't allow a hit until the fifth inning while winning for the second time in three starts.

Baker credited a small change in his mechanics -- standing taller in his delivery -- for a victory against the Brewers on May 24, but then allowed four runs and seven hits in a loss to Tampa Bay in his last start.

Against Cleveland, he appeared to be back in good form.

Baker struck out a career-high 10 and walked just one. He allowed three runs -- two earned -- and six hits.

"I threw down about as well as I have all season," Baker said. "I left a couple pitches up, but we're human beings. That's just part of it. It's definitely a game of adjustments and as long as you continue to make those adjustments you should be fine."

Meanwhile, Carmona (2-6) failed to reach the third inning for the second time in three starts. He's allowed four or more runs in his last five starts, and has walked 24 batters in his last six.

"The way it's been working in the bullpen has been great, and I'm looking forward to the next game," Carmona said through a translator.

The bullpen sessions have offered a glimmer of hope for the right-hander who finished fourth in AL Cy Young Award voting in 2007 after a 19-8 season.

"We're going to continue to talk about it, continue to work and just go from there," Cleveland manager Eric Wedge said. "He was on the plate more in his previous start and they knocked him around pretty good. But today, he comes out and he's working off the plate. We know what he needs to do. He knows what he needs to do, but he's just having a hard time doing it."

Carmona walked the first two batters he faced before Morneau singled to left, scoring Denard Span. Kubel followed with a drive to straightaway center that just missed the glove of a leaping Trevor Crowe.

Notes

Minnesota RF Michael Cuddyer is making progress with his injured right index finger. Cuddyer did some hitting and throwing before the game and hopes to take early batting practice Friday in Seattle. He has been out since Sunday. ... Cleveland 1B Chris Giminez recorded his first major league hit, a seventh-inning home run. ... Twins C Joe Mauer is following up on his torrid May. Mauer had three hits Thursday and has hit in five consecutive games. He is 11-for-19 during that span, and is batting .492 at home this season.

 
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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Players of the Game
Minnesota

J. Kubel
AB 4
R 2
H 3
HR 2
RBI 6
Cleveland

C. Gimenez
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
 
Cleveland Indians
Ben Francisco, RF4000013 .263
Jamey Carroll, 3B3111020 .304
    Josh Barfield, 2B1000010 .750
Victor Martinez, C4000010 .346
    Ryan Garko, 1B0000000 .250
Shin-Soo Choo, LF4010010 .297
Jhonny Peralta, SS-3B4000011 .263
Mark DeRosa, DH4010020 .264
Chris Gimenez, 1B-C4121011 .500
Trevor Crowe, CF3010121 .182
Luis Valbuena, 2B-SS3110113 .203
Totals34372213  
Batting
2B - Mark DeRosa (11, Baker), Luis Valbuena (7, Baker)
HR - Chris Gimenez (1, Baker)
RBI - Jamey Carroll (4), Chris Gimenez (1)
SB - Shin-Soo Choo (9, 2nd base off Baker/Redmond)
Team LOB - 6
Cleveland Indians
Fausto Carmona (L,2-6) 2577312 7.42
Tomo Ohka 5633102 5.40
Jensen Lewis 1211110 5.46
IBB - Kubel by Jensen Lewis
Pitches-Strikes - Fausto Carmona 54-28, Tomo Ohka 82-52, Jensen Lewis 19-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Fausto Carmona 2-3, Tomo Ohka 7-8, Jensen Lewis 1-1
Batters Faced - Fausto Carmona 14, Tomo Ohka 22, Jensen Lewis 6
Minnesota Twins
Denard Span, LF4211100 .307
Joe Mauer, DH4430100 .436
Justin Morneau, 1B3333200 .348
Jason Kubel, RF4236101 .322
Joe Crede, 3B4011011 .232
Brendan Harris, SS5010014 .279
Mike Redmond, C4000002 .250
Carlos Gomez, CF4010002 .218
Matt Tolbert, 2B4000001 .179
Totals3611131152  
Batting
2B - Justin Morneau (17, Lewis), Jason Kubel (13, Ohka), Brendan Harris (8, Carmona)
HR - Denard Span (4, Ohka), Justin Morneau (15, Ohka), Jason Kubel 2 (7, Carmona, Carmona)
SF - Joe Crede (2)
RBI - Denard Span (24), Justin Morneau 3 (50), Jason Kubel 6 (31), Joe Crede (23)
2-OUT RBI - Jason Kubel 3 (13)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
E - Brendan Harris (1, Throwing)
Minnesota Twins
Scott Baker (W,3-6) 76321101 5.88
Sean Henn 2100130 2.57
Pitches-Strikes - Scott Baker 106-72, Sean Henn 36-24
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Scott Baker 4-7, Sean Henn 2-1
Batters Faced - Scott Baker 28, Sean Henn 8
Game Information
Attendance - 20897
Game Time - 2:40
Temperature - 69
Umpires - Home - Joe West, First Base - Paul Nauert, Second Base - Paul Schrieber, Third Base - Chad Fairchild