MINNEAPOLIS — The first pitch set the tone for Minnesota.
Jake Cave robbed Tim Beckham of a home run, helping Lance Lynn bounce back from two poor starts, and Max Kepler homered to lead the Twins to a 6-2 victory over the Baltimore Orioles on Friday night.
Beckham drilled Lynn's first offering to the deepest part of Target Field, but Cave raced to the wall, leapt, reached back and caught the ball while fully extended to deny a home run.
"It's up there with actually hitting a home run, it's cool to be able to help the pitcher like that and take one back," Cave said.
Beckham tipped his cap to the Twins' rookie.
"That's pretty cool for him to do that. I'm sure he's made a lot of great plays against guys in his career, so he knows what it feels like to do something like that," Cave said.
It was the second straight day Cave made a fully extended catch at the wall. He robbed Chris Davis in right-center Thursday.
"I definitely didn't want to start the game by giving up a solo home run. One heck of a play and I was able to get into a rhythm after that," Lynn said.
Lynn (6-7) allowed six hits and one earned run in six innings as he continued his up-and-down season. He allowed 11 earned runs in 6 2/3 innings over his previous two starts, including seven in 1 2/3 innings last Sunday at Wrigley Field. His ERA was 1.74 ERA in six starts from May 22 to June 20, but 7.47 in his first eight starts of the season.
"You're gonna have your good ones and your bad ones," he said.
Up 6-0, Lynn needed 27 pitches to get through the sixth when Baltimore scored its first run, including 10 against Jonathan Schoop, an at-bat that ended in a double play.
"I threw a couple pitches that I thought he'd do that earlier," Lynn said. "He covers a lot of the plate both sides and he finally hit a ball and we were able to turn it."
Caleb Joseph had a season-high three hits for the Orioles, losers of four straight and 11 of 12.
In his first start since going on the disabled list June 23 with a left ankle sprain, Baltimore's Dylan Bundy (6-8) allowed nine hits and five earned runs in 3 1/3 innings. It is his second-shortest start of the season. The right-hander allowed seven runs without recording an out May 8 vs. Kansas City.
Brian Dozier and Jorge Polanco had RBI singles in the first inning as Minnesota jumped out to a 3-0 lead, increasing Bundy's opening frame ERA to 9.00. It is 3.13 in innings two through nine.
Kepler made it 5-0 in the fourth with a two-run homer to right field.
"If anything, I was trying to miss low and it ended up right down the middle and he was able to hit it out. That was pretty much how the whole game was, throwing stuff right down the middle," Bundy said.
Polanco, Joe Mauer, Eddie Rosario and Mitch Garver each had two hits for the Twins, who have won two straight after a six-game skid.
FRY IS FINE
In his third career game, Baltimore reliever Paul Fry struck out four and did not allow a hit in 2 1-3 innings. The left-hander was called up June 29.
"Pitching looks easy when you locate a fastball and spin a ball for a strike anytime in the count, but it's not that easy. He was in a really good place today and you could tell," said manager Buck Showalter.
Orioles: To make room for Bundy, RHP David Hess was optioned to Triple-A Norfolk. . INF Luis Sardiñas (left ankle sprain) was reinstated from the 60-day disabled list. He cleared waivers and was assigned outright to Norfolk.
Twins: Manager Paul Molitor said there is a "really good chance" INF Ehire Adrianza, out since July 2 with a left hamstring strain, will be ready to play when he can come off the DL next Thursday. . INF/OF Taylor Motter was activated off the 7-day DL (concussion-like symptoms) and optioned to Double-A Chattanooga.
A pair of right-handers are scheduled to start Saturday with Baltimore's Kevin Gausman (4-6, 4.05) facing Minnesota's Kyle Gibson (2-6, 3.58). Gausman has allowed two or fewer runs in four straight starts. Gibson has allowed more than three earned runs just once in his last nine turns.