Colon, Twins blank Brewers for 4th straight win
MILWAUKEE -- Bartolo Colón surprised his manager and then baffled the Milwaukee Brewers.
Colón pitched seven innings for his second consecutive win since joining the Twins, Brian Dozier added a home run, double and single and Minnesota beat the Brewers 4-0 on Wednesday night.
"I don't think you go into a game thinking Bartolo is going to give you seven zeroes, but he kept making pitches," manager Paul Molitor said. "He was in command. You could tell by their swings."
Colón (2-1) scattered five hits, struck out five and walked one in his sixth career start at Miller Park. Milwaukee failed to advance a batter past second.
The oldest active player in the majors, Colón made his 518th career start and fifth for the Twins. He was 2-8 with an 8.14 ERA in 13 starts for Atlanta before being released July 4. Three days later, the 44-year-old right-hander signed with Minnesota. He pitched the 37th complete game of his career in his last start and beat Texas 8-4.
"We couldn't get anything going of any substance," Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. "He kept us off balance enough. We weren't able to string together any good at-bats, certainly."
Colón swung the bat well in his three at-bats and grounded out sharply to third twice.
"I was afraid (he) was going to blow out a hamstring on that one swing," Molitor said. "Even that first at-bat, he almost scooted one down the line there."
Orlando Arcia had two sharp singles, the last coming in the seventh. As Colón walked to the dugout, he smiled and tapped Arcia on the back a couple of times with his glove.
"He told me 'Hit it somewhere else. Quit hitting it up the middle,' " Arcia said through interpreter Carlos Brizuela.
Taylor Rogers retired the side in order in the eighth. Matt Belisle struck out the side in the ninth to seal Colón's 237th career victory.
Dozier teed off on a 3-2 pitch from Brandon Woodruff (1-1) in the third for his 22nd home run. Dozier doubled in the seventh off Jacob Barnes and scored when second baseman Eric Sogard misplayed a hard smash by Joe Mauer. Miguel Sanó followed with a run-scoring double.
"It was a big play," Counsell said of the error. "Tough play up the middle, but it's a play he expects to make. They ended up getting another base hit and putting you in a 4-0 hole."
Dozier was hit by a pitch in the fifth and singled in the ninth.
Jorge Polanco drove in the Twins' first run with a double in the second.
Woodruff won his major league debut, a 2-0 road victory over Tampa Bay last week, but the 24-year-old right-hander couldn't duplicate that effort at Miller Park. He went 5 2/3 innings, allowed three hits, walked three and struck out two.
Twins: Twins starter Adalberto Mejia (left arm brachialis strain) was placed on the 10-day disabled list after being pulled Tuesday night in the fourth inning with pain in his upper left arm. Molitor said that an MRI showed inflammation in the muscle, but no major damage.
TWINS ROSTER MOVE
LHP Dietrich Enns makes his major league debut Thursday after being called up from Triple-A Rochester. Molitor said that move allows the team to push the three right-handers back a day each when the Twins play the Detroit Tigers. "(It) gives us (Kyle) Gibson, (José) Berrios and (Ervin) Santana this weekend," he said.
1B/DH Kennys Vargas is headed back to Triple-A Rochester after a one-day stint in the majors. He was recalled from Rochester on Wednesday. He pinch hit for Colón in the eighth and fouled out. "Not always the best situation, but we are going to protect our pitching the best way we can," Molitor said.
Brewers: 3B Travis Shaw missed the game for personal reasons. ... C Stephen Vogt aggressively worked out before the game while wearing a supportive brace on his injured left knee. "Running felt great, throwing felt phenomenal and the blocking felt very good," he said. "We're well ahead of schedule." He said the brace provided a sense of security, despite being uncomfortable to wear.
Twins: Enns makes his major league debut Thursday after being called up from Triple-A Rochester after Wednesday night's game.
Brewers: RHP Zach Davies (13-5) is 6-1 with a 2.38 ERA over his last eight starts. He's going for his fifth consecutive quality start and 10th overall. He's never faced the Twins.