McKenzie allows three home runs, Indians’ skid hits six with 7-5 loss to Twinsby AP
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Nelson Cruz hit his 16th homer, and the Minnesota Twins beat the Cleveland Indians 7-5 on Sunday to complete a sweep of their weekend series.
Marwin Gonzalez, Ryan Jeffers and Josh Donaldson also connected, helping Minnesota win for the 10th time in 12 games. The Twins have multiple homers in six straight games, including 11 in the series against Cleveland.
The Twins stayed one game back of AL Central-leading Chicago, which beat Detroit 5-2 on Sunday. The Twins visit the White Sox for the opener of a four-game series on Monday night.
Caleb Thielbar (2-0) got the win, recording two outs in relief of Michael Pineda. Sergio Romo earned his fourth save by striking out Franmil Reyes and retiring Tyler Naquin on a fly ball to center after allowing two hits in the ninth.
Indians rookie Triston McKenzie (2-1) struggled for the first time in his fifth career start. McKenzie gave up five runs in 4 1/3 innings, despite surrendering just three hits. He struck out seven, issued one walk and hit a batter.
Cesar Hernandez and Carlos Santana each had three hits, but the Indians dropped their sixth straight game.
Cleveland jumped out to a 3-0 lead, but Gonzalez got the Twins on the board with a two-run homer in the third.
Cruz tied it with a solo drive in the fourth, moving into a tie for the major league lead in homers. Jeffers hit two-run shot in the fifth, his third of the season, and Donaldson added his fourth of the year.
After setting the major league record for homers last season, Minnesota started the day with 70 homers, fifth in the majors this season.
Twins: OF Eddie Rosario suffered a left elbow contusion after making contact with Byron Buxton as the two chased a fly ball to end the eighth. Rosario had his left arm extended when it hit Buxton’s chest. Rosario was replaced by Jake Cave to start the ninth. … OF Max Kepler was reinstated from the injured list after missing nine games with a left adductor strain. Kepler was hitless in four at-bats and left the bases loaded in the sixth after popping out. … Rookie OF Brent Rooker was placed on the injured list after breaking his forearm when he was hit by a pitch Saturday.
Indians: RHP Carlos Carrasco (2-4, 3.12 ERA) will start Tuesday as Cleveland opens a two-game road series against the Chicago Cubs, who are scheduled to start RHP Yu Darvish (7-2, 1.77 ERA). Carrasco has allowed one run or less in each of his past three starts.
Twins: RHP José Berríos (4-3, 4.40) starts Monday for the Twins. Chicago has RHP Dylan Cease (5-2, 3.33 ERA) scheduled to start. Berríos has won three straight decisions and given up seven runs in 22 2/3 innings over his last four starts.