Cave homer, 4 RBIs help Twins sweep Giants | Basketball

0

By PATRICK DONNELLY – Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Jake Cave homered, doubled and drove in four runs as the Minnesota Twins beat the San Francisco Giants 8-3 to complete a three-game sweep Sunday.

Cave gave the Twins a 3-2 lead with his second homer of the season in the fourth inning. He added a two-run brace in the fifth to cap a five-run rally that put Minnesota on top for good.

Cave tied Saturday night’s game with a two-out single in the ninth before the Twins won in the 10th. The backup outfielder was recalled from the minors in early August and is seeing more playing time with All-Star center fielder Byron Buxton on the injured reserve list. But he said he is ready to play any role manager Rocco Baldelli has in mind for him.

“If I get the chance to start, great, I love it,” Cave said. “If I have to come off the bench and help someone, then I like that too.”

People also read…

The Twins outscored the Giants 20-5 in the series and won three in a row after a six-game losing streak that saw them slip from first place in the AL Central. Sunday’s win moved Minnesota within two games of first-place Cleveland, which was shut out at Seattle.

“I would say it’s probably one of our best series of the year. I don’t know any other way to sum it up,” Baldelli said. “The last three games are as good as three games you can expect a team to play. Whether we’re running runs or playing close ball games, whether we stay in the game, whether the pitchers come in and do their job, all baseball. That’s what you want.”

Devin Smeltzer (5-2) earned his first victory since June 23, when he was in Minnesota’s rotation. Smeltzer pitched 2 2/3 scoreless innings in relief to starter Aaron Sanchez.

Michael Fulmer and Jorge López each pitched a perfect inning to finish it.

Giants starter Jakob Junis (4-4) allowed six earned runs and nine hits in 4 1/3 innings. The outing capped a tough month for Junis, who went 0-2 with a 7.13 ERA in five starts in August.

Brandon Crawford scored three and drove in a run for the Giants, who lost eight of 10 and ended a 2-6 road swing.

“Not good enough, not up to anyone in the standards of this club,” said manager Gabe Kapler, whose side are 7 1/2 games from the last wildcard spot in the NL. “We have to go home and keep our heads down, keep grinding, keep working every day and realize there’s still time. And really fight and scratch and claw to stay in this thing.”

The lead changed hands five times before the Twins opened it in the fifth. Max Kepler, Jose Miranda and Gio Urshela each had an RBI brace before Cave slotted in two more with another brace.

Carlos Correa went 2 for 4 with a double and an RBI for Minnesota. He was 8 for 12 with two runs and four RBIs in the series. The star shortstop didn’t deliver the huge numbers some were expecting when he signed the biggest free agent contract in team history in March. But Baldelli sees signs that Correa is warming up at the right time.

“Carlos is very locked up at the moment. I think he takes control of the at-bats when he comes up to home plate,” Baldelli said. “I think he knows what he’s trying to do and he does it. He just does it over and over again. When you consistently get great drummers like that, you know it’s going in a really nice way.

Giants: 3B Evan Longoria started in the fifth with a tight right hamstring. He said he tweaked it by running a double in the top of the set. “I hope it’s nothing serious,” Longoria added. “I don’t think that’s the case.”

Twins: 2B Jorge Polanco (knee) was sidelined after being taken out of Saturday’s game with patellar tendonitis.

Giants: LHP Carlos Rodón (12-6, 2.81 ERA) will face the Padres on Monday in Game 1 of a three-game home series. The two-time All-Star is 4-0 with a 1.44 ERA in his last five starts. He threw a three-hitter with 12 strikeouts in a 3-1 win at San Diego on July 9.

Twins: RHP Dylan Bundy (7-6, 4.56) takes the mound Monday as Minnesota opens a three-game series with the Red Sox at Target Field. In their first meeting this season, Bundy gave up a run in 5 1/3 innings on April 18 as the Twins won 8-3 at Boston.

More AP baseball: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without permission.

Share.

Comments are closed.