Seattle at Minnesota

W: S. Deduno (1-2) L: R. Elias (3-3) S: G. Perkins (12)
HR: SEA - M. Saunders (2)   MIN - B. Dozier (11)

Dozier's 3-run homer helps Twins top Mariners wire reports

MINNEAPOLIS -- Brian Dozier doesn't like talking about his power-hitting abilities. When told his manager referred to him as Minnesota's "igniter" over the past couple of games -- during which he homered on consecutive nights -- the Twins second baseman looked embarrassed.

"The igniter? Oh goodness," Dozier said Saturday night after hitting a three-run homer that proved to be the game-winning hit in Minnesota's 4-3 victory over the Seattle Mariners.

Then he was told "The Ignitor" was the nickname for Hall of Famer Paul Molitor, the former Twins player and current coach.

"That's pretty cool.. I'll take it," Dozier said with a laugh.

So will the Twins.

Dozier's homer in the fifth inning put Minnesota ahead for good, Samuel Deduno tossed six sharp innings for his first win as the Twins moved a game over .500 -- a rarity in these parts over the past three years.

With Minnesota trailing 2-1, Dozier followed consecutive singles by Aaron Hicks and Eduardo Escobar by sending a curveball from Roenis Elias (3-3) into the seats in left field. It was Dozier's 11th homer of the season.

"He's our igniter," Gardenhire said. "If we can get the bottom of the order to get on base, and roll it over, he's going to come up with more and more RBI opportunities and that's kind of what we're looking for, and tonight he delivered."

Dozier had a solo homer on Friday night; Saturday night marked the fifth time in his career he homered in consecutive games. His 20 home runs at Target Field ties him for fourth all-time with former Twins slugger Justin Morneau. He leads the A.L. with 40 runs scored.

"My job is to get on base, whether it's my hits or anything, on base is my biggest stat," said Dozier, who extended his current hitting streak to a season-high eight games.

Michael Saunders had a homer and two RBIs for Seattle.

Deduno (1-2) struck out four, allowed two hits and retired 18 of the 23 batters he faced. Both of Seattle's runs off Deduno came in the third inning after James Jones' triple scored Brad Miller. Jones scored on Saunders' sacrifice fly to give the Mariners a one-run lead.

But Deduno was otherwise solid, working efficiently through Seattle's lineup over the next three innings while Elias struggled with his control. Elias allowed six hits and one walk in seven innings, but he also hit a batter, and had a wild pitch and a balk in the second inning.

Elias' teammates and manager sounded pleased with his performance, even saying his curveball that Dozier homered on was a good pitch.

"I went back right after that inning to check where it was and I thought it was a really good pitch," catcher Mike Zunino said. "(Dozier) just dropped the head on it and was able to elevate it."

Seattle pulled to 4-3 in the eighth when Saunders hit a solo homer off Jared Burton. Corey Hart doubled two batters later, but Burton got Kyle Seager swinging to end the threat. Glen Perkins worked the ninth for his 12th save in 14 chances.

The Mariners have lost four straight.

"We'll figure it out. It's a little tough right now," Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon said. "One thing I pointed out right from the start, winning games at this level is tough. One thing here and one thing there will cause you to lose. We'll figure this offense out and we'll be OK."

NOTES: The Twins haven't been above .500 since April 27. ... McClendon decided to skip RHP Brandon Maurer's turn in the rotation for Seattle's upcoming two-game series at Texas. Maurer (1-2) has a 6.00 ERA.. LHP James Paxton (strained back) threw a two-inning simulated game Saturday, and Tijuan Walker (shoulder) threw a bullpen session. Both players may throw more simulated games in Texas. ... Twins bench coach Terry Steinbach missed the game to attend his son's college graduation in Duluth. ... Jones has recorded a hit in all nine of his starts. He drove in his first career run. ... Minnesota goes for the series sweep on Sunday when RHP Ricky Nolasco (2-3) faces Mariners RHP Felix Hernandez (4-1) who is 6-5 in 15 career starts versus the Twins.

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.
CBSSports Facebook Google Plus
Conversation powered by Livefyre
Players of the Game

B. Dozier
AB 3
R 2
H 2
HR 1

M. Saunders
AB 3
R 1
H 1
HR 1

Related Video

Seattle Mariners
James Jones, CF4111000 .333
Michael Saunders, RF3112000 .253
Robinson Cano, 2B4010000 .303
Corey Hart, DH4010011 .210
Kyle Seager, 3B4000023 .225
Justin Smoak, 1B3020111 .243
   Cole Gillespie, PR0000000 .263
Dustin Ackley, LF4000004 .258
Mike Zunino, C3000121 .243
Brad Miller, SS1100100 .157
   a-Stefen Romero, PH1000001 .217
   Willie Bloomquist, SS1000001 .178
Roenis Elias, P0000000 .000
   Yoervis Medina, P0000000 .000
a-grounded into a double play for Miller in the 7th
2B - Corey Hart (5, Burton), Justin Smoak (10, Duensing)
3B - James Jones (1, Deduno)
HR - Michael Saunders (2, Burton)
SF - Michael Saunders (2)
RBI - James Jones (1), Michael Saunders 2 (9)
Team LOB - 6
DP - Miller-Cano-Smoak
Seattle Mariners
Roenis Elias (L,3-3) 7644141 3.88
Yoervis Medina 1000010 4.00
WP - Roenis Elias (3)
HBP - Dozier (by Roenis Elias)
Pitches-Strikes - Roenis Elias 92-62, Yoervis Medina 13-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Roenis Elias 7-8, Yoervis Medina 1-1
Batters Faced - Roenis Elias 27, Yoervis Medina 3
Minnesota Twins
Brian Dozier, 2B3223010 .258
Joe Mauer, 1B4000002 .291
Trevor Plouffe, 3B4000010 .239
Kurt Suzuki, DH3011000 .322
Josmil Pinto, C3000021 .245
Chris Colabello, RF3000000 .233
   Chris Parmelee, RF0000000 .276
Eduardo Nunez, LF3010000 .308
Aaron Hicks, CF2110100 .191
Eduardo Escobar, SS3110012 .354
Samuel Deduno, P0000000 .000
   Brian Duensing, P0000000 .000
   Jared Burton, P0000000 .000
   Glen Perkins, P0000000 .000
2B - Kurt Suzuki (10, Elias)
HR - Brian Dozier (11, Elias)
RBI - Brian Dozier 3 (25), Kurt Suzuki (26)
2-OUT RBI - Kurt Suzuki (13)
Team LOB - 2
DP - Duensing-Escobar-Mauer
E - Trevor Plouffe (4, Throwing)
PB - Josmil Pinto (3)
Minnesota Twins
Samuel Deduno (W,1-2) 6222240 3.53
Brian Duensing (H,1) 1100100 1.50
Jared Burton (H,6) 1211011 5.71
Glen Perkins (S,12) 1100010 3.54
WP - Samuel Deduno (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Samuel Deduno 95-62, Brian Duensing 14-6, Jared Burton 14-10, Glen Perkins 13-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Samuel Deduno 8-7, Brian Duensing 1-1
Batters Faced - Samuel Deduno 23, Brian Duensing 4, Jared Burton 5, Glen Perkins 4
Game Information
Attendance - 29717
Game Time - 2:26
Temperature - 65
Umpires - Home - Angel Hernandez, First Base - Adrian Johnson, Second Base - Toby Basner, Third Base - Larry Vanover