Eight-run fifth sends Twins past Rangers
ARLINGTON, Texas — Jake Cave watched Mitch Garver wipe out what was left of Minnesota’s six-run deficit with a bases-clearing double.
Then the rookie put the Twins in front to match the club’s highest-scoring inning of the season.
Cave hit a tiebreaking homer right after Garver’s three-run double in an eight-run fifth, sending the Minnesota Twins to a 10-7 victory over the Texas Rangers on Friday night.
Tyler Austin started the fifth with his 15th home run and Garver’s liner to the wall in left-center pulled the Twins even after Nomar Mazara’s 435-foot drive for a three-run shot had given the Rangers a 6-0 lead in the fourth.
Cave’s eighth homer was a two-run shot off pulled into the right-field seats in a lefty-lefty matchup against reliever Matt Moore (3-7). Minnesota’s other eight-run innings came in a pair of wins — 9-8 over Houston on April 11 and 10-1 over Baltimore on July 8.
“We’re talking about trying to cut it in half and then the next thing you know, we’ve got a chance to get back to even and then Jake had the big at-bat,” manager Paul Molitor said. “A little bit crazy.”
Matt Magill (3-2) and three other Minnesota relievers combined to strike out nine in 4 1/3 scoreless innings to help hand the Rangers their fifth straight loss.
Trevor May fanned four of the five he faced in the seventh and eighth. Trevor Hildenberger allowed a run without a hit in the ninth.
Garver added an RBI double in the seventh, had three hits and reached on a three-base error in the ninth when Carlos Tocci dropped a fly ball as he was crashing into the wall in center field.
Handed the big lead on Mazara’s 17th homer , Drew Hutchison didn’t retire any of the four batters he faced in the fifth. Jorge Polanco ended his night with a two-run double . The right-hander has an 8.86 ERA in five starts for Texas.
“Tonight was especially frustrating because I felt like I was throwing the ball really well, was in a good rhythm,” Hutchison said. “Then to do that that inning was frustrating.”
Minnesota left-hander Stephen Gonsalves, looking for his first big league win in his third start, didn’t make it out of the fourth inning. The 24-year-old allowed six hits and six runs — three earned — with no strikeouts and four walks in 3 2/3 innings.
“Just making it really hard on himself with the extra baserunners, with the walks and making some mistakes when he was ahead in counts,” Molitor said. “It was a rough go and I think he’d probably be the first to tell you that.”
BACK TO THE BULLPEN
Martin Perez made his first relief appearance for Texas since he was a rookie in 2012. The left-hander pitched two scoreless innings two days after he was taken out of the rotation with a 6.95 ERA in 13 starts.
Austin’s homer ended a 0-for-11 skid. … The Rangers are assured of a losing record at home after dropping to 29-41. … Garver had his second game of the season with at least three hits and four RBIs. … Joey Gallo made his first start at first base since July 1, and 30th of season. He’s first Texas player since Brad Wilkerson in 2007 to start at least 30 games at first and in the outfield.
Twins: Molitor said he didn’t expect LF Eddie Rosario to play the rest of this nine-game road trip after leaving Thursday’s 5-3 loss at Cleveland with tightness in his right quadriceps muscle. The trip ends Wednesday in Houston. … SS Polanco returned after missing all three games against the Indians with a strained left hamstring.
Rangers: Manager Jeff Banister said RHP Bartolo Colon (lower back strain) is the likely starter Sunday. The 45-year-old was eligible to come off the disabled list Friday.
Twins RHP Jose Berrios (11-9, 3.74 ERA) had a career-high 12 strikeouts in seven shutout innings in his previous start against Texas. Rangers RHP Yovani Gallardo (7-3, 6.01) is winless in his past three starts. Gallardo won seven of his first nine starts after rejoining one of his former teams in June.