Big 5th inning carries Twins past Astros
MINNEAPOLIS — Tyler Duffey pitched six innings of one-run ball, leading the Minnesota Twins to a 3-1 win over the Houston Astros on Monday night at Target Field.
Duffey (7-8) allowed just four hits and struck out eight while walking one in earning his second consecutive win. The right-hander had allowed at least five runs in three consecutive starts entering the night and at least four in four straight.
Eddie Rosario had three hits, and Jorge Polanco and Danny Santana added two hits apiece to lead Minnesota, which won for the seventh time in nine games.
Taylor Rogers, Ryan Pressly and closer Brandon Kintzler combined for three hitless innings of relief. Kintzler worked a scoreless ninth for his 10th save. The four Minnesota pitchers combined on a four-hitter.
Twins second baseman Brian Dozier went 0 for 4, snapping his career-best, 16-game hitting streak.
Collin McHugh (7-9) was solid for the Astros, allowing three runs on 10 hits and a walk while striking out six in seven innings.
George Springer had an RBI double in the sixth inning that provided the Astros with their only run. Houston has lost six of its past seven and nine of 11 overall.
After Minnesota scored three times in the bottom of the fifth, Houston had a chance to at least draw even in the next half, getting a one-out walk from Tony Kemp and a single by Alex Bregman. Springer's double scored Kemp, but Bregman stopped at third, allowing Duffey to strand both runners thanks to a groundout by Carlos Correa and a strikeout of Evan Gattis.
McHugh allowed just one hit through four innings but gave up four-consecutive hits to start the fifth. After Rosario rolled a single to right, Polanco ripped a hit to center that eluded Carlos Gomez and rolled to the wall, scoring Rosario and allowing Polanco to reach third.
It was just the beginning of Gomez’s defensive struggles.
The next batter, Juan Centeno, hit one to deep center field that Gomez initially ran in on before losing it in the lights. The ball landed near the warning track, and Polanco scored while Centeno cruised into third with his first career triple.
Santana followed with an RBI single to give the Twins a 3-0 lead.