For the second straight day, it took until the sixth inning for Minnesota to get on the scoreboard against Detroit. The Twins had a four-run sixth on Friday, then on Saturday they scored two in the sixth, three in the seventh and four in the eighth.
“It’s a beautiful thing when you stay at it and you continue to have the at-bats you’re looking for and you put some runs across the board,” Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said. “There’s different ways to do it. Today, we went deep and brought some runs in and made it happen.”
After Andrelton Simmons snapped an 0-for-19 slump with a base hit and Arraez followed with a single, Polanco took reliever Joe Jimenez (2-1) deep to right to give Minnesota a 5-4 lead in the seventh.
Detroit threatened in the eighth with the tying run on third and one out, but Twins reliever Alex Colomé struck out Eric Haase and Jeimer Candelario to escape the jam.
“That would have changed the game more than necessarily even the Jimenez homer,” Tigers manager A.J. Hinch said of the eighth inning. “The back half of this game was a mess. We didn’t do a lot right.”
Kyle Funkhouser started Saturday’s bullpen game for the Tigers. Funkhouser gave up just two first-inning singles in 2 1/3 innings of work. Detroit used seven total pitchers Saturday.
Niko Goodrum and Zack Short hit back-to-back solo homers in the second inning off Twins starter Bailey Ober to put Detroit up 2-0. It was the third time this year the Tigers have gone back-to-back.
Ober surrendered four runs in just 3 1/3 innings, matching the shortest of his eight starts in his debut season. Danny Coloumbe (1-0) earned his first win since 2018 with 1 1/3 scoreless innings of relief.
Twins: Baldelli said C Mitch Garver is “meeting some thresholds” as he works his way back from a groin contusion. Garver remains on track to join Triple-A St. Paul next week to begin a rehab assignment.
RHP José Berríos (7-3, 3.36 ERA) will get the start for Minnesota in Sunday’s series finale. Berríos allowed just one earned run and struck out 10 in seven innings his last time out in a loss against the White Sox. Detroit will counter with RHP Wily Peralta (2-1, 2.14 ERA), who is making his fifth start of the year. Peralta threw seven scoreless innings against Texas in his most recent start.
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