Minneapolis – Miguel Sano led Minnesota’s rally against the Detroit bullpen with a home run and the tying single in the ninth inning, before Byron Buxton beat out an infield single for the game-winning RBI to give the Twins a 4-3 victory over the Tigers on Saturday night.
“He can hit, he can run, he can field, he can throw. Everything, you know? I love to see Byron playing like that when he’s healthy and he’s helping the team to win,” said Sano, who homered in the seventh off Joe Jimenez and singled in the ninth against Jose Cisnero (1-2) after a walk by Josh Donaldson and single by Nelson Cruz.
With two outs and two strikes, Buxton hit a slow grounder to shortstop Willi Castro. One of the fastest players in baseball, Buxton blazed down the first-base line and just beat Castro’s throw, before the Twins spilled out onto the field in celebration and doused Buxton with water.
“I just told myself to put the ball in play, put it on the ground and make it tough for them. Earlier in the game, they were pitching me a little bit in, so I had to make a little bit of adjustment,” Buxton said. “Like I said, just try to put the ball on the ground there and run like crazy.”
Castro charged the ball, but his valiant effort was still in vain.
“This guy might be the best runner in baseball, especially on a swinging bunt,” said Tigers bench coach Lloyd McClendon, who took over for manager Ron Gardenhire after he left in the sixth inning because of a stomach virus.
Despite surrendering a home run to Victor Reyes in his second pitch, Kenta Maeda produced another masterpiece for the Twins, retiring 18 straight batters after Reyes sent his hanging slider into the covered-up right field seats. Maeda yielded only two hits in six innings, but a walk to Jonathan Schoop to start the seventh was the spoiler. After a single, Tyler Clippard relieved.
“I allowed the leadoff batter to hit a home run, so after that I just tried to switch gears and hold the rest down. My pitching itself wasn’t bad,” Maeda said.
“I don’t think there was anything I could do (about handing over to a reliever), but I just wanted to finish up that inning solid.”
Jorge Alcala (2-1) pitched two scoreless innings for the Twins, who have won five straight games and are 17-4 at home for the best mark in the major leagues.
Angels 10, Astros 9 (1st)
Angels 7, Astros 6 (2nd)
In Anaheim, California, Mike Trout became the Angels’ career home run leader and Jo Adell celebrated with a game-ending, two-run single in the seventh, lifting Los Angeles to victory over the Houston Astros in the first game of their doubleheader sweep.
The 29-year-old Trout is the 16th player to reach the 300-homer mark before turning 30 and the 11th-fastest by age to do it.
“It means a lot. Once I got within five I started to think about it and when I got No. 299 last night I was definitely thinking about it,” he said.
The Angels trailed by two going into the seventh. Trout and Shohei Ohtani drew walks before Justin Upton doubled to drive in Trout. One out later, Adell lined a two-run single to right off Enoli Paredes (1-2) for his first game-ending hit.
Ohtani went 1-for-3 with an RBI, singling in the first run of the game.
The Halos won the second game after Anthony Rendon hit a three-run homer in the seventh inning.
Indians 4, Brewers 3
In Cleveland, Milwaukee closer Josh Hader allowed his first hit of the season, and then gave up Cesar Hernandez’s game-winning single in the ninth inning.
Oscar Mercado, who scored on Hernandez’s liner through a five-man infield, led off the ninth with a double, ending Hader’s major league-record streak of 12 hitless appearances to start the season.
Hader (0-1) did not retire a batter, leaving him tied with Hal Newhouser and Brad Clontz for the record of 35 consecutive hitless at-bats to open a year.
Orioles 6, Yankees 1
In Baltimore, Yankees ace Gerrit Cole had a dominating start go awry during a nightmarish sixth inning against the Orioles, who got a slump-breaking homer from DJ Stewart.
Cole (4-3) lost a third straight start for the first time since July 30-Aug. 10, 2018, with Houston. Prior to this skid, the right-hander had reeled off 20 straight regular-season victories.
Stewart was 0 for 17 this season before leading off the sixth with a drive over the right-field wall. A throwing error by third baseman Thairo Estrada preceded two walks and a two-run single by Mountcastle, and Rio Ruiz capped the uprising with a two-run double.
Stewart also homered in the seventh, and Dillon Tate (1-0) earned his first major league victory.
Rockies 5, Dodgers 2
In Los Angeles, Nolan Arenado drove in the tiebreaking run in the ninth inning, pinch-hitter Josh Fuentes added a two-run double and Colorado snapped the Dodgers’ six-game winning streak.
Charlie Blackmon homered, doubled and scored two runs as Colorado won for just the second time in its last 19 games at Dodger Stadium. The Rockies had lost 24 of their last 28 meetings overall with their powerhouse NL West rivals before they rallied late against the Dodgers’ vaunted bullpen.
Mookie Betts had two hits for the major league-leading Dodgers (30-11), who lost for only the fourth time in 23 games. Los Angeles’ 11-game winning streak at Dodger Stadium, its longest since 2017, also ended.
In Other Games
Mets 5, Phillies 1
Reds 6, Pirates 2
Athletics 8, Padres 4
White Sox 5, Royals 3
Cardinals 4, Cubs 2 (1st)
Cardinals 5, Cubs 1 (2nd)
Marlins 7, Rays 3
Giants 4, Diamondbacks 3
Nationals 10, Braves 4
Red Sox 9, Blue Jays 8
Mariners 5, Rangers 3