Corey Knebel
Hunter homers twice as Twins get better of Brewers
Corey Knebel

Hunter homers twice as Twins get better of Brewers

Published Jun. 27, 2015 10:57 p.m. ET


Torii Hunter celebrated his 1,300th game as a Minnesota Twin in style.

Hunter homered twice and doubled, Eduardo Escobar hit a three-run homer and the Twins beat the Milwaukee Brewers 5-2 Saturday.


Kyle Gibson (5-6) allowed two runs and six hits in 6 2-3 innings. He had lost a career-worst three straight decisions after starting June with a no-decision in the Twins' 10-5 loss to Milwaukee at Target Field.

''How do you get 1,300 and you're only 29?'' Hunter said with a big laugh. ''In dog years, yes.''

''It's great, man, to have 1,300 games with the Minnesota Twins,'' the 39-year-old right fielder said. ''That's where it all started, back where I grew up and learned how to be a man and learned how to be a baseball player. I'm definitely honored.''

Hunter appeared in made his major league debut as a pinch-runner in one game on Aug. 22, 1997. He played in six games in 1998 and became a regular in 1999 until he left after the 2007 season.

Hunter is back with Minnesota after two years with Detroit and Saturday was his 66th game of this season.

According to Twins manager Paul Molitor, Hunter has been getting teased about his age and power.

''They've been joking each other about who doesn't have pop these days,'' Molitor said. ''And, he kind of took care of that a little bit.''

What Hunter and Escobar also took care of was ensuring the win that helped Gibson snap his losing streak.

Hunter went hitless in Friday night's 10-4 loss to the Brewers, but carried what he described as good at bats into Saturday's game.

''Yesterday, I felt good,'' he said. ''I was 0 for 4, but I swung the bat pretty well. I took the positive from that and just carried it over to today. I got lucky. I just happened to hit the ball where nobody was at which was out of the park.''

Brewers manager Craig Counsell discredited any talk about Hunter slowing down.

''That's not at player at the end of his career,'' Counsell said. ''He's still a threat. He's still dangerous.''

Casey Fien pitched the eighth and Glenn Perkins picked up his 24th save in as many chances with a perfect ninth.

Hunter and Escobar gave Gibson more support than the three runs he had gotten during his losing streak. Escobar hit a three-run homer in the fifth after Hunter doubled and Chris Herrmann walked.

Hunter homered in the sixth off Matt Garza (4-10) and in the ninth against Corey Knebel.

''I thought Garza was good today,'' Hunter said. ''He just had one mistake. It's a three-run homer. We were able to capitalize on that mistake.''

Garza had lost his previous two starts, giving up a total of 26 hits and 16 runs. Against the Twins, he allowed four runs and five hits in six innings.

Gibson retired 10 of the first 11 batters before Carlos Gomez lined a double in the fourth and scored on Adam Lind's single.

Pinch-hitter Ryan Braun had a two-out, RBI single in the seventh that ended Gibson's start.


Twins: OF Aaron Hicks, sidelined since June 13 with a right forearm strain, went 0 for 4 with two strikeouts Friday night for Triple-A Rochester in a rehab assignment.

Brewers: LF Khris Davis, on the 15-day DL with a torn meniscus in his right knee, appears to be improving enough that Counsell said he could head out for a rehab assignment next week.


Twins: LHP Tommy Milone (4-1) looks to win his third straight start as he goes Sunday against the Brewers.

Brewers: RHP Mike Fiers (3-7) makes his second start of the season against Minnesota. He is 1-1 with an 1.88 ERA in three career starts against the Twins, who beat him 2-0 on June 7 at Target Field.


Brian Dozier has hit safely in all nine career games at Miller Park, going .436 (17 for 39).


The Brewers challenged their 19th play of the season in the sixth inning after Trevor Plouffe was rule safe at first. After a review of 2:12, the play was overturned and Plouffe was ruled out. The Brewers are 13-8 in challenges this year.


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