FINAL: TWINS 7, TIGERS 3
Minnesota extended its lead for the second American League Wild Card spot to three games over the Texas Rangers with a 6-3 win over the Tigers at Comerica Park on Friday night.
The Tigers got out to an early 1-0 lead when Nick Castellanos hit his 25th home run of the season.
Daniel Norris looked like he had decent stuff tonight, but his control just wasn't there consistently, and the Twins were able to chase him before the end of the fifth inning.
Norris' final line: 4.2 IP, 7 H, 5 R, 5 ER, BB, 2 K, 84 pitches
Max Kepler homered, and Byron Buxton (3-for-4) doubled twice, including a two-run extra base hit in the fourth inning.
Ian Kinsler had a leadoff home run in the sixth inning to cut the Minnesota lead to 6-3, but the Tigers weren't able to get any closer.
Brian Dozier hit his 32nd home run of the season off of Shane Greene in the ninth to give the Twins a little bit of insurance.
Bottom 9th: Twins 7, Tigers 3
Twins closer Matt Belisle got the call in the ninth, and even though Jeimer Candelario was able to notch a two-out single, Tyler Collins fouled out to end the game.
Miguel Cabrera grounded out to shortstop and Nick Castellanos grounded out to first to start the frame.
Top 9th: Twins 7, Tigers 3
Brian Dozier gave the Twins some insurance with a two-out solo shot to left field off of Shane Greene that stretches Minnesota's cushion to 7-3.
Bottom 8th: Twins 6, Tigers 3
Jacoby Jones struck out looking for the second time tonight, and after Jose Iglesias reached on a passed ball after striking out, Ian Kinsler grounded into a fielder's choice. Twins reliever Trevor Hildenberger got Alex Presley to ground out to end the frame.
Top 8th: Twins 6, Tigers 3
Alex Wilson got the call from the bullpen to start the eighth for the Tigers.
Eddie Rosario flew out to center field, Byron Buxton lined out to shortstop and Robbie Grossman struck out swinging to end an unusually quick inning for Wilson.
Bottom 7th: Twins 6, Tigers 3
Jeimer Candelario flew out to left-center, Tyler Collins grounded out to first and James McCann grounded out to third as Kyle Gibson has stayed the course for the Twins tonight. He's thrown 91 pitches.
Top 7th: Twins 6, Tigers 3
Chad Bell got the call from the bullpen in the seventh, and he set Minnesota down in order, keeping the Twins from scoring for the first time since the second inning.
Joe Mauer struck out swinging, Joege Polanco lined out to first and Eduardo Escobar struck out swinging.
Bottom 6th: Twins 6, Tigers 3
Ian Kinsler got the Tigers a bit closer with one of his patented home runs to leadoff an inning, blasting a ball over the wall in left-center to cut the Minnesota lead to 6-3.
Alex Presley was able to draw a walk, but Miguel Cabrera grounded into his second double play of the night. Nick Castellanos grounded out back to the mound to end the frame.
Top 6th: Twins 6, Tigers 2
Drew VerHagen took over for the Tigers in the sixth.
Byron Buxton notched his third hit of the night with a double to left field to leadoff the sixth, and he came around to score when Robbie Grossman doubled to right field, pushing their advantage to 6-2.
VerHagen struck out Max Kepler, got Chris Gimenez to ground into a fielder's choice and struck out Brian Dozier to get out of the frame.
Bottom 5th: Twins 5, Tigers 2
James McCann flew out to right field, Jacoby Jones struck out looking and Jose Iglesias grounded out as the Tigers went down in order in the fifth.
Kyle Gibson has struck out six and thrown just 69 pitches thus far.
Top 5th: Twins 5, Tigers 2
Brian Dozier reached after Jeimer Candelario fumbled the ball away at third. Dozier was able to steal second as Joe Mauer struck out swinging. With a man now in scoring position, Jorge Polanco flew out to left field, forcing Tyler Collins to make a nice play on the ball with his back against the wall. Eduardo Escobar drove home Dozier with a single to left field, putting Minnesota up 5-2.
That was the end of the line for Daniel Norris.
Daniel Stumpf was able to get Eddie Rosario to ground out to end the inning.
Bottom 4th: Twins 4, Tigers 2
Nick Castellanos struck out swinging, Jeimer Candelario grounded out to second and Tyler Collins struck out looking to end the frame against Kyle Gibson.
Top 4th: Twins 4, Tigers 2
Jorge Polanco notched a leadoff single to left field, and after Eduardo Escobar struck out swinging, Polanco was able to swipe second base. Eddie Rosario drew a walk, putting two men on for Byron Buxton, who drove in both runs with a double down the left field line that was misplayed by Mikie Mahtook, putting Minnesota up 3-2.
Following the play, Mahtook had to leave the game with a noticeable limp.
After getting the second out, Norris gave up an RBI single to Max Kepler, extending the Twins lead to 4-2.
Bottom 3rd: Tigers 2, Twins 1
Jacoby Jones followed up an amazing grab in the field with a single to leadoff the third for the Tigers. As Jose Iglesias grounded into a fielder's choice on a hit-and-run, Jones made the decision to keep running, sliding into third just ahead of the ball to give the Tigers a man in scoring position. Ian Kinsler drove him in with a bloop single to center field, putting the Tigers up 2-1.
Alex Presley gave the Tigers two men on base by drawing a walk in the next at-bat, but Miguel Cabrera grounded into an inning-ending double play to let Kyle Gibson off the hook.
Top 3rd: Tigers 1, Twins 1
Max Kepler matched Nick Castellanos with a leadoff home run of his own in the third, blasting a Daniel Norris offering WAY over the wall in right field to tie the game 1-1.
Norris bounced back to set the next three Minnesota hitters down in order, aided by an amazing diving grab by Jacoby Jones in center field to end the frame.
Bottom 2nd: Tigers 1, Twins 0
Nick Castellanos made some noise in the second inning with his 25th home run of the season going well over the wall in left field, putting the Tigers up 1-0.
Jeimer Candelario, Mikie Mahtook and James McCann went down in order following the blast.
Top 2nd: Tigers 0, Twins 0
Byron Buxton singled sharply to center field with two outs in the second, but Daniel Norris was able to Robbie Grossman to fly out to center to end the frame.
Bottom 1st: Tigers 0, Twins 0
Ian Kinsler struck out swinging, Alex Presley did the same and Miguel Cabrera flew out to right field as Kyle Gibson threw 16 pitches in the first inning.
Top 1st: Tigers 0, Twins 0
Brian Dozier flew out to left field, Joe Mauer grounded out back to the mound and Jorge Polanco flew out to left field as Daniel Norris set Minnesota down in order in the first.
Twins at Tigers
First pitch: 7:08 p.m.
TV/radio: Fox Sports Detroit/97.1 FM
Records: The Tigers are 62-91, in fourth place and 34 games back of the first-place Indians in the AL Central. The Twins are 79-74, in second place and 17 games behind the Indians.
1. Ian Kinsler, 2B
2. Alex Presley, RF
3. Miguel Cabrera, 1B
4. Nick Castellanos, DH
5. Jeimer Candelario, 3B
6. Mikie Mahtook, LF
7. James McCann, C
8. JaCoby Jones, CF
9. Jose Iglesias, SS
Daniel Norris, SP
1. Brian Dozier, 2B
2. Joe Mauer, 1B
3. Jorge Polanco, SS
4. Eduardo Escobar, 3B
5. Eddie Rosario, LF
6. Byron Buxton, CF
7. Robbie Grossman, DH
8. Max Kepler, RF
9. Chris Gimenez, C
Kyle Gibson, SP