MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — The Orioles’ pitching staff had kept the Twins hitless for 21 consecutive batters with one out in the 10th. That streak ended decisively.
Danny Santana singled, and Brian Dozier’s two-run home run off Tommy Hunter lifted the Minnesota Twins to a 4-2 victory over the Orioles on Monday night.
“I left a fastball up, and he hit it,” Hunter said. “Late in the game like that, you’re trying to get ground balls instead of fly balls. That’s the ideal situation. But he hit it.”
Dozier lined a 2-1 pitch from Hunter (2-2) into the left field seats for his 17th home run of the season. Earlier in the day Dozier was selected as one of the five candidates for the final roster spot on the AL All-Star team.
It capped a game in which five home runs accounted for all six runs. The first came from Baltimore’s Manny Machado, who led off the game with his 18th on the year. After
Torii Hunter and Aaron Hicks gave Minnesota a 2-1 lead on solo home runs in the first and second, Adam Jones tied the game with one of his own high off the left-field foul pole in the sixth.
But the Twins pitched out of jams in the sixth and seventh, both times leaving two Orioles runners on base.
“We’ve got to keep grinding,” Machado said. “Our pitching staff has been throwing well. . We’ve got to pick up the slack a little bit and help them out.”
Trevor May (5-7) pitched a scoreless 10th inning to earn the win in his first relief appearance of the season.
Wei-Yin Chen struck out five and walked three while pitching seven innings of four-hit ball. Hughes lasted 6 1/3 innings, giving up nine hits and a walk while striking out three.
“Sometimes you’ve got to give credit to the other guys, too,” Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. “We pitched well, but two runs is two runs any way you look at it.”
CHEN SETTLES DOWN AFTER EARLY HOMERS
Chen allowed homers of more than 400 feet in each of the first two innings, but after allowing a leadoff single to Miguel Sano in the fourth he did not allow another hit over his final 13 batters. “I feel like I was overthinking the first three innings,” Chen said.
In the fourth inning Hicks made a play in center field that recalled Willie Mays’ famous over-the-shoulder catch in the 1954 World Series. With two outs and a man on, Chris
Parmelee sent a ball to deep center field. Hicks turned his back on home plate and took off running. Without looking back, he reached out on the warning track and made the catch.
Molitor was asked about the degree of difficulty of the catch. “The German judge gave it a 7.7,” he quipped.
After the game the Twins announced that left-handed reliever Aaron Thompson had been optioned to Triple-A Rochester. Thompson was 1-3 with a 5.01 ERA in 41 appearances. He gave up a game-winning double to Kansas City’s Eric Hosmer on Sunday. Thompson will be replaced by 27-year-old lefty Ryan O’Rourke, who has yet to pitch in the big leagues.
Orioles infielder Ryan Flaherty’s stay in Triple-A didn’t last long. Flaherty was optioned to Norfolk after Saturday’s game to make room for fellow infielder Jonathan Schoop.
But on Monday the Orioles put outfielder Nolan Reimold on the paternity list.
Orioles: RHP Jason Garcia began an injury rehab assignment at Double-A Bowie on Monday. Garcia, who has a 5.93 ERA in eight appearances this year, is on the 60-day disabled list with right shoulder tendinitis.
Twins: RHP Ryan Pressly was put on the 15-day disabled list with a strain in his right back under the shoulder. He was replaced on the roster by OF Shane Robinson, who returned from the Family Emergency List. … The team announced that RHP Ricky Nolasco will have surgery to remove bone fragments from his right ankle on July 13. Nolasco has not pitched since May 31. No timetable for his recovery was given.
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