Twins win series opener in Cleveland, 5-1 over Indians

  • Article by: LA VELLE E.NEAL III , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 24, 2013 - 12:59 AM

Pedro Florimon’s early RBI double set the stage, and Josh Willingham drove home two more in a pivotal seventh.

 

– Two out. Two on. An 0-2 count on Josh Willingham. It looked like another inning would end with a zero on the board. It’s the way Twins baseball has rolled this season.

“I was in battle mode from the get,’’ Willingham said.

He took a ball, then fouled off a 96-miles-per-hour fastball from Cleveland reliever Cody Allen. Then Allen threw a curveball on the outer half of the plate, and Willingham didn’t miss it. The ball was crushed to right-center and past outfielder Drew Stubbs for a double as two runs scored.

The Twins were on their way to a 5-1 victory over Cleveland.

The worst team in the American League with runners in scoring position got a big hit to help put the game away. It also was a bounceback moment for Willingham, who struck out with the bases loaded in the first.

“A big hit by Willingham, which he needed and we needed, to add on,’’ Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said.

The Twins have won three of their past four games, against the AL Central-leading Tigers and the Indians, who began the day 2½ games out of a wild-card berth.

Cleveland entered Friday with a .263 batting average with runners in scoring position. The Twins, in spoiler mode for the third consecutive season, entered batting .230 with runners in scoring position. So Willingham’s hit was significant.

“It was nice to help the team for once,’’ Willingham said. “I haven’t done very much lately to help us win games, and we have been playing pretty good. It was nice to be able to contribute.’’

Copy that. But The Hammer entered the game batting .253 in run-scoring situations, well above the team average.

Willingham was one of the culprits in the first inning when the Twins loaded the bases against Cleveland righthander Ubaldo Jimenez with no outs. Willingham struck out looking, Ryan Doumit went down swinging and Trevor Plouffe struck out swinging.

Maybe it took the bottom of the order to show the middle of the order how to get things done.

Clete Thomas led off the second with a double to left. Pedro Florimon, the No. 9 hitter, hammered a double over Michael Bourn in center to drive in the Twins’ first run. Chris Herrmann, who has made a lot of solid contact lately, doubled to right-center to drive in Florimon.

Jimenez walked three in the first inning. Twins righthander Samuel Deduno threw two wild pitches in the bottom half. But both found enough control to turn the game into a strikeoutfest. Deduno tied a season high with six. Jimenez set a season high with 10.

The Twins just needed to avoid a white-knuckle ninth, and came through in the seventh.

Florimon beat out an infield hit and Brian Dozier walked. As Herrmann batted, Florimon was caught in a rundown between second and third and tagged out. Then Hermann tapped to first. But the Indians bullpen got sloppy.

Justin Morneau dug in against lefthander Rich Hill, who promptly missed the plate three times then intentionally walked Morneau. Hill looked up into the night as if he knew that the walk would come back to haunt him. Allen entered to face Willingham, and Willingham made Hill and the Indians pay.

  • related content

  • Photo gallery: Twins 5, Cleveland 1

    Saturday August 24, 2013

    The Twins won the first game of a three-game series against the Indians on Friday night in Cleveland.

  • Mauer visits Mayo Clinic about concussion

    Saturday August 24, 2013

    Twins catcher Joe Mauer visited a specialist at the Mayo Clinic on Friday while the Twins wait to plot a course for him to return to the lineup.

  • Twins' farm report: Revolving Rochester Red Wings just winning

    Saturday August 24, 2013

    Ten players batted for Rochester during the Red Wings’ 12-7 loss to Buffalo on Opening Day last April. Two of them will suit up Saturday night for the Red Wings.

  • Postgame: Thoughts on Deduno, Herrmann and Duensing

    Saturday August 24, 2013

    Twins win 5-1 and have won three of their last four games,

  • Chart: Twins' minor leaguers coming and going

    Saturday August 24, 2013

    Coming and GoingIt’s unusual for this late in the season, but the Twins added and subtracted a noteworthy player from...

  • Friday's Twins-Indians game recap

    Saturday August 24, 2013

    GAME RECAPIMPACT PLAYERSamuel Deduno, TwinsThe righthander held Cleveland to one run in six innings, giving up three hits and overcoming...

  • Minnesota Twins' Pedro Florimon (25) is congratulated by Justin Mornea...

  • No. 9 hitter Pedro Florimon smacked a long double off Cleveland starting pitcher Ubaldo Jimenez in the second inning.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions
8:10 PM ET123456789RHE
ClevelandT. House (1-3)000
MinnesotaR. Nolasco (5-8)000
@theBallpark
Preview | Matchup | Lineup | Log | Wrap | Box

ADVERTISEMENT

Texas 5 Bottom 5th Inning
Miami 2
Seattle 1 Top 4th Inning
Philadelphia 1
Toronto 0 Top 1st Inning
Milwaukee 0
NY Mets - Z. Wheeler 2:35 PM
Oakland - J. Samardzija
Atlanta - A. Wood 6:05 PM
Pittsburgh - G. Cole
Houston - S. Feldman 6:05 PM
NY Yankees - M. Pineda
Arizona - T. Cahill 6:05 PM
Washington - T. Roark
LA Angels - G. Richards 6:10 PM
Boston - C. Buchholz
Detroit - R. Porcello 6:10 PM
Tampa Bay - J. Odorizzi
Cincinnati - J. Cueto 6:15 PM
St. Louis - L. Lynn
San Francisco - J. Peavy 7:05 PM
Chicago Cubs - E. Jackson
Baltimore - W. Chen 7:10 PM
Chicago WSox - H. Noesi
Cleveland - T. House 7:10 PM
Minnesota - R. Nolasco
Kansas City - D. Duffy 7:40 PM
Colorado - J. De La Rosa
San Diego - E. Stults 9:10 PM
Los Angeles - R. Hernandez
Pittsburgh 8/21/14 6:30 PM
Philadelphia
Carolina 8/22/14 6:30 PM
New England
NY Giants 8/22/14 6:30 PM
NY Jets
Jacksonville 8/22/14 6:30 PM
Detroit
Oakland 8/22/14 7:00 PM
Green Bay
Chicago 8/22/14 9:00 PM
Seattle
Tampa Bay 8/23/14 3:30 PM
Buffalo
Tennessee 8/23/14 6:00 PM
Atlanta
Dallas 8/23/14 6:00 PM
Miami
Washington 8/23/14 6:30 PM
Baltimore
New Orleans 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Indianapolis
Minnesota 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Kansas City
St. Louis 8/23/14 7:00 PM
Cleveland
Houston 8/23/14 8:00 PM
Denver
San Diego 8/24/14 3:00 PM
San Francisco
Cincinnati 8/24/14 7:00 PM
Arizona
Los Angeles 8:00 PM
Colorado
San Jose 9:00 PM
Seattle
Montreal 8/22/14 7:30 PM
Winnipeg
Toronto 8/23/14 3:00 PM
Edmonton
Calgary 8/24/14 2:00 PM
Ottawa
Saskatchewan 8/24/14 6:00 PM
Brt Columbia
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How sure are you that the Twins are on the road to improving?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close