MINNEAPOLIS (AP) The Detroit Tigers have devised quite a system for getting production out of their emergency call-ups: get them to the ballpark as late as possible before throwing them into the lineup.
”Sometimes that’s the best way to do it,” manager Brad Ausmus said. ”Doesn’t give you time to think about anything.”
John Hicks had three hits, including his first career homer, and drove in five runs to lead Michael Fulmer and the Detroit Tigers to a 13-4 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Sunday.
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One day after the benches cleared when Tigers starter Matthew Boyd threw behind slugger Miguel Sano in retaliation for teammate JaCoby Jones being hit in the face, there was no sign of lingering hard feelings.
Fulmer (2-1) allowed two runs on four hits in seven innings, striking out seven. Jim Adduci had three hits and two RBIs on the day he arrived from Triple-A Toledo and Alex Avila hit a two-run homer for the Tigers. Victor Martinez added three hits and two RBIs.
Hicks came up from Toledo on Saturday morning after Miguel Cabrera was put on the disabled list and has gone 5 for 10 with a double, a homer and six RBIs in two Tigers wins.
Adduci had not played in the big leagues since 2014 with Texas. He woke up at 4:15 on Sunday morning, had his connecting flight in Chicago delayed, and arrived at Target Field about 90 minutes before the first pitch to learn that he was in the lineup and hitting seventh.
”It took a lot of nerves away,” Adduci said. ”I was kind of tired, relaxed and it worked out great.”
Kyle Gibson (0-3) gave up seven runs – six earned – on eight hits in just 2 2/3 innings for the Twins, who went 2-7 on the home stand against AL Central opponents. Max Kepler and Eddie Rosario homered for the Twins, but Minnesota lost for the sixth time in seven games.
”It was not a good ending to not a very good home stand,” Twins manager Paul Molitor said. ”Some of the games were good, but we had a couple of games that get your attention.”
Hicks hit a three-run homer in the ninth inning, prompting Molitor to go to backup catcher Chris Gimenez as his seventh relief pitcher. Gimenez got Andrew Romine to fly out to end the inning.
Tigers: Ausmus said he was optimistic that Cabrera (groin) would be ready to come off the disabled list when he is eligible on May 1. … Ausmus also said OF J.D. Martinez ran outside for the first time since spraining his right foot in spring training and is on track to return some time in May.
Twins: LHP Buddy Boshers was recalled from Triple-A Rochester just for the day to take the place of RHP Justin Haley, who was put on the disabled list with biceps tendinitis. Boshers was sent back down after pitching 2 1/3 innings of scoreless relief. … The Twins also recalled 1B Kennys Vargas and sent the struggling LHP Adalberto Mejia to Rochester.
Left fielder Danny Santana threw out Ian Kinsler at home in the first inning, but was charged with an error after he couldn’t hold on to a liner from Justin Upton in the second inning. Avila followed with his home run for a 2-0 lead.
In the sixth inning, Michael Tonkin got Nicholas Castellanos swinging to end the inning, but Jason Castro let the ball get by him for a passed ball. He scrambled to throw Castellanos at first base, but the ball sailed past Joe Mauer into right field, allowing Hicks and Romine to score for a 10-2 lead.
”It’s frustrating mainly because I’m going out every five days and not really giving our team a chance to win, taxing the bullpen and putting them in a tough spot as well,” Gibson said.
Tigers: Detroit heads back home to start a series with Seattle. RHP Jordan Zimmermann (1-1, 5.94) starts the opener on Monday night Mariners ace Felix Hernandez (2-1, 3.65).
Twins: Minnesota starts a six-game road trip in Texas on Monday. RHP Phil Hughes (2-1, 5.40) starts the opener against Rangers LHP Martin Perez (1-2, 3.60).