Twins
Tigers
5 - 6 Final
  for this game

Avila's RBI double lifts Tigers over Twins

May 31, 2011 - 12:13 AM Detroit, MI (Sports Network) - Alex Avila hit a two-out, RBI double in the bottom of the eighth inning, as the Detroit Tigers edged the Minnesota Twins, 6-5, in the opener of a three-game series at Comerica Park.

Victor Martinez clubbed a game-tying, two-run homer in the sixth and Miguel Cabrera added a solo shot for Detroit, which has won five of its last eight games.

Michael Cuddyer drove in a pair of runs for the Twins, who have lost eight of 10.

With the Tigers trailing 5-3, Andy Dirks singled to lead off the sixth. Minnesota starter Nick Blackburn retired the next two batters before Martinez smashed a 2-1 offering to the right-field seats.

After squandering a bases-loaded opportunity with no one out in the next inning, Detroit pushed home a go-ahead run off Alex Burnett (1-4) in the eighth. Jhonny Peralta kept the frame alive with a two-out single and scored when Avila ripped a double down the left-field line.

A fan seated along third-base side interfered with the ball, and Peralta was awarded home when the umpires convened to discuss the play.

Twins manager Ron Gardenhire was ejected for arguing the call.

"I still don't know how that runner scored," Gardenhire said after the game. "We know it hit a person in the stands. They're call was not clear when I talked to them. I don't know how the run scored [from first]."

Jose Valverde succeeded Al Alburquerque (2-1) and tossed a 1-2-3 ninth to record his 13th save in as many opportunities.

"It looked like we were going to have a tough time winning that game ... but we hung in there," said Tigers manager Jim Leyland.

The Tigers scored two runs during their first at-bat. A pair of infield outs by Dirks and Brennan Boesch plated Austin Jackson, who led off with a double. Cabrera then followed with his 10th home run of the season, a blast over the wall in left.

Dirks added an RBI double in the third to give Detroit a 3-0 lead.

Cuddyer put the visitors on the board with a two-out, run-scoring single in the fourth. Minnesota then surged ahead with a four-spot in the fifth.

Danny Valencia doubled off Detroit starter Brad Penny to begin the frame and scampered home on a single by Rene Rivera. After Denard Span walked and Alexi Casilla reached on a bunt single to load the bases, Jason Kubel tied the game with an RBI base hit. Justin Morneau lofted a sacrifice fly and the Twins grabbed a two-run lead on Cuddyer's second RBI single of the game.

Game Notes

Cabrera extended his hitting streak to 12 games...Detroit notched its seventh straight win over Minnesota...Kubel left after the sixth inning with a sprained left foot...The Twins placed pitcher Francisco Liriano on the 15-day disabled list after the game with left shoulder inflammation. The move is retroactive to May 23.






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  • Minnesota Twins manager Ron Gardenhire was ejected from the game after arguing whether the ball was touched by a fan.

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  • Victor Martinez two-out, two-run Home Run (5) to right scored Andy Dirks. Jhonny Peralta due up.

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  • Michael Cuddyer singled in Alexi Casilla with one out. On the play, Jason Kubel advances to second. Runners on first and second with Jim Thome due up.

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  • Justin Morneau sacrifice fly scored Denard Span with one out. Runners on first and second with Michael Cuddyer due up.

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  • Jason Kubel singled in Rene Rivera with none out. On the play, Alexi Casilla advances to second and Denard Span advances to third. Bases loaded and Justin Morneau due up.

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  • Rene Rivera singled in Danny Valencia with none out. Runner on first and Denard Span due up.

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  • Michael Cuddyer singled in Jason Kubel with two out. Runner on first and Jim Thome due up.

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  • Andy Dirks doubled in Brandon Inge with one out. Runner on second and Brennan Boesch due up.

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  • Miguel Cabrera two-out, solo Home Run (10) to left. Victor Martinez due up.

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  • Brennan Boesch ground out scored Austin Jackson with two out. None on and Miguel Cabrera due up.

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