|Milwaukee (43-35) «||0||0||5||1||1||3||0||1||x||11||14||0|
MILWAUKEE -- The Milwaukee Brewers hit four homers, got a sharp outing from their ace on the mound and even had a slick defensive play for the final out. From beginning to end, the NL Central leaders are clicking.
"This team has a real nice balance of pitching, defense and offensive threats, so there's no way around our team right now," leadoff hitter Rickie Weeks said. "We're playing pretty good baseball right now and that's all we can ask for."
There's no way around Fielder, either.
The Brewers' slugger hit a two-run shot to give him an NL-best 67 RBI this season and the Brewers beat the injury-riddled Minnesota Twins 11-1 Saturday night after Delmon Young left on a stretcher with an ankle injury.
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"It's jelling," left fielder Nyjer Morgan said. "You can just see that we're going to stick together and we're not going to get down on certain situations. We're going to keep battling as a solid unit."
The tumbling Twins dropped their fourth in a row overall and lost Young after the left fielder jammed his right ankle against the wall in the fifth. He was immediately placed on the 15-day disabled list and will have an MRI in Minnesota on Monday.
"Hopefully the MRI shows there is no ligament damage or anything," Young said. "It's not as bad as the sprain I had in '03 before the draft, but it's the same foot."
Yovani Gallardo (9-4) gave up a run over seven innings. Gomez homered off Francisco Liriano (4-7) to highlight a five-run third and Fielder's 21st blast of the season, a two-run shot, capped the sixth.
Even in the ninth with the game comfortably locked away, backup third baseman Josh Wilson made a lunging catch over the tarp in foul territory with Morgan leaping up and rolling over Wilson's back to end it.
"To hustle like that, that's just the type of player [Morgan] is. That's unbelievable," reliever Mark DiFelice said. "Minnesota, they were on fire when they came here. Hopefully [we've] extinguished that and move on, play the Yankees tough like we know we can. It's going to be a good series."
Milwaukee improved to 28-11 at Miller Park, the best home record in the majors. The Brewers hold a season-high two-game lead over the Cardinals in the division.
"We're not really noticing what those guys are doing, we've just got to go out there and try to win every ballgame," Gallardo said. "If we go out there and the job we have to do, everything's going to fall into place at the end of the year."
Liriano had been sharp recently, but this performance looked more like his 1-4 start to the season. The Twins' defense didn't help him much after Minnesota took an early 1-0 lead. In the third, the Twins committed two errors after Gomez homered to make it 2-1 as Liriano labored through a 43-pitch inning.
Gomez flipped his bat emphatically on his big hit after being mired in a 3-for-32 slump and limited to playing against lefties. He maintained he wasn't trying to show up his former club. He played for Minnesota in 2008-09.
"I knew I hit it good," Gomez said. "They know it's nothing personal."
Weeks followed with a single, reaching second on Danny Valencia's errant throw from third. Hart walked and Ryan Braun singled to extend his career-best hitting streak to 16 games. Ben Revere misplayed the ball in center, allowing Weeks and Hart to score and Braun to reach second. Casey McGehee's single gave Milwaukee a 5-1 lead.
The Brewers tacked on one in the fourth, one in the fifth and three in the sixth, capped by Fielder's homer. Hart's blast capped the scoring in the eighth.
Young left on a stretcher after misplaying Betancourt's fly ball in the fifth. Young caught his right foot in the base of the wall and put no weight on the leg as he was helped onto a stretcher.
"Once I got out there and saw the spike mark on that railing at the bottom of the fence I didn't like that too well," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "He was in a lot of pain."
The Twins learned Friday that first baseman Justin Morneau would need neck surgery and will miss six weeks. Minnesota has lost a combined 361 games due to injuries of 13 players coming into play Saturday and is mired in fourth place in the AL Central, 11 games under .500.
"I don't know what it is this year, but it happens. None of us want to get hurt. It's boring on the DL. It's boring rehabbing," Young said. "We're all looking forward to defending our central division championship and it's really hard to do when everyone is watching the games right now."
|Prince Fielder (center) celebrates his two-run HR in the sixth inning, giving him an NL-best 67 RBI. (Getty Images)|
|Players of the Game|
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|Ben Revere, CF||5||0||2||1||0||0||0||.273|
|Alexi Casilla, 2B||3||0||0||0||1||1||3||.256|
|Joe Mauer, C||4||0||1||0||0||1||0||.190|
|Michael Cuddyer, 1B-RF||3||0||2||0||1||1||1||.293|
|Delmon Young, LF||2||0||0||0||0||0||3||.256|
|Luke Hughes, 1B||2||0||1||0||0||0||1||.252|
|Danny Valencia, 3B||4||0||1||0||0||2||2||.216|
|Tsuyoshi Nishioka, SS||2||0||0||0||0||0||0||.176|
|Anthony Swarzak, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|a- Jim Thome, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||2||.234|
|Phil Dumatrait, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|b- Rene Rivera, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||2||.169|
|Joe Nathan, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Jason Repko, RF-LF||4||1||1||0||0||1||0||.190|
|Francisco Liriano, P||0||0||0||0||1||0||0||.500|
|Matt Tolbert, SS||3||0||0||0||0||0||0||.189|
|a-struck out for Swarzak in the 6th|
|b-grounded out for Dumatrait in the 8th|
|RBI - Ben Revere (8)|
|2-OUT RBI - Ben Revere (4)|
|SB - Alexi Casilla (12, 2nd base off Gallardo/Lucroy)|
|Team LOB - 9|
|Outfield Assists - Ben Revere 1|
|E - Ben Revere (3, Misplayed grounder), Danny Valencia (8, Throwing)|
|Francisco Liriano (L,4-7)||3.2||8||6||5||2||3||1||4.98|
|WP - Phil Dumatrait (1)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Francisco Liriano 86-53, Anthony Swarzak 25-19, Phil Dumatrait 30-21, Joe Nathan 21-14|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Francisco Liriano 3-4, Anthony Swarzak 2-1, Phil Dumatrait 1-3, Joe Nathan 2-1|
|Batters Faced - Francisco Liriano 20, Anthony Swarzak 7, Phil Dumatrait 9, Joe Nathan 4|
|Rickie Weeks, 2B||3||2||2||1||0||0||0||.294|
|a- Craig Counsell, PH-2B||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.202|
|Corey Hart, RF||2||3||1||1||3||1||0||.272|
|Ryan Braun, LF||3||1||1||2||0||1||2||.309|
|Mark Kotsay, 1B||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.233|
|Prince Fielder, 1B||4||1||1||2||0||1||1||.306|
|Nyjer Morgan, LF||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.330|
|Casey McGehee, 3B||4||0||1||1||0||1||0||.230|
|Tim Dillard, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Mark DiFelice, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Yuniesky Betancourt, SS||4||1||2||1||0||0||1||.233|
|Jonathan Lucroy, C||4||1||2||0||0||0||0||.276|
|Carlos Gomez, CF||4||2||3||2||0||0||0||.221|
|Yovani Gallardo, P||3||0||1||0||0||1||2||.184|
|b- Josh Wilson, PH-3B||1||0||0||0||0||1||0||.226|
|a-grounded out for Weeks in the 8th|
|b-struck out for Gallardo in the 7th|
|2B - Rickie Weeks (20, Dumatrait)|
|HR - Corey Hart (8, Nathan), Prince Fielder (21, Dumatrait), Yuniesky Betancourt (5, Swarzak), Carlos Gomez (5, Liriano)|
|SF - Rickie Weeks (3), Ryan Braun (2)|
|RBI - Rickie Weeks (33), Corey Hart (22), Ryan Braun 2 (57), Prince Fielder 2 (67), Casey McGehee (33), Yuniesky Betancourt (26), Carlos Gomez 2 (16)|
|2-OUT RBI - Casey McGehee (19), Yuniesky Betancourt (11)|
|Team LOB - 5|
|DP - Weeks-Betancourt-Fielder|
|Yovani Gallardo (W,9-4)||7||6||1||1||3||6||0||3.92|
|WP - Yovani Gallardo (5)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Yovani Gallardo 108-70, Tim Dillard 20-12, Mark DiFelice 12-9|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Yovani Gallardo 12-2, Tim Dillard 3-0|
|Batters Faced - Yovani Gallardo 29, Tim Dillard 5, Mark DiFelice 3|
|Attendance - 43980|
|Game Time - 2:49|
|Temperature - 76|
|Umpires - Home - Dan Bellino, First Base - John Tumpane, Second Base - Derryl Cousins, Third Base - Ron Kulpa|