Thome's 599th, 600th lead Twins over TigersAug 16, 2011 - 5:41 AM
The historic blast came in the seventh inning off Tigers left-handed reliever Daniel Schlereth. The 40-year-old became the eighth player in baseball history to reach the milestone, and the first since Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez last season.
"I'm a huge fan of his," Schlereth said when asked how he felt to be on the opposite side of history. "He did a great thing tonight. I felt kind of awkward...I didn't know whether to clap or what. I didn't know what to do. I'm probably going to write him a letter and congratulate him on his accomplishment."
Thome entered play with 598 career homers, and hit his first of the contest -- a two-run blast to left -- in the sixth inning off Detroit starter Rick Porcello.
"I envisioned doing this in Minnesota, amongst the home fans. But to do it anywhere is great," said Thome. "To do it in a Twins uni is just very cool. In a visiting park, they give you a standing ovation is just cool. To watch them stand up and cheer is very special. (It's) something I'll never forget."
Ben Revere added two hits and two RBI for the Twins, who won for just the second time in their last 10 games.
Francisco Liriano (8-9) gave up nine hits and five runs over six innings to earn the win. Joe Nathan shut the door in the ninth for his 10th save.
Victor Martinez hit a two-run home run, Ryan Raburn added a solo homer and Alex Avila finished 3-for-4 and a home run short of the cycle for the Tigers, who have lost two in a row following a three-game win streak.
Delmon Young, who was acquired by Detroit prior to the game from Minnesota for pitcher Cole Nelson and a player to be named later, also went deep in the setback.
It didn't help Porcello (11-8), who was tagged in defeat for nine hits and six runs -- four earned -- over six full frames.
In the Minnesota seventh, Trevor Plouffe worked a leadoff walk, stole second and moved to third on a wild pitch. Justin Morneau walked and Jason Kubel fanned, setting the stage for Thome, who struck an opposite-field, three-run shot which barely cleared the wall in left field to give the Twins a 9-5 advantage.
As Thome approached home plate, several members of his family raced onto the field and anticipated his arrival steps ahead of his teammates.
"To share it at home plate with my teammates and my family...it was just a very special night," Thome added. "They were really grinding it out, traveling with the team. School starts in a week. My dad's here, my sister's here. With all the injuried and hype, it was just a sigh of relief to get it over with. "
Raburn cut the Tigers deficit to three by greeting Alex Burnett with a homer to left, but after a Miguel Cabrera single, Glen Perkins got the call and prevented further damage. He also recorded the first two outs in the eighth before giving way to Matt Capps.
Nathan retired the side in order in Detroit's final turn.
Young hit a two-out solo shot in the home first which gave the Tigers -- his new club -- a 1-0 lead over his old mates.
"We always admired his skills from the other side, including when he was with Tampa," said Tigers manager Jim Leyland on his club's latest purchase. "If tonight is a sign of things to come, it's certainly a heck of an acquisition for us."
Minnesota picked up three runs in the third thanks to a costly error. After Matt Tolbert reached on a bunt single, Raburn's wild throw on a Tsuyoshi Nishioka grounder put runners on the corners. Revere then posted an RBI groundout, Plouffe hit a run-scoring double and Morneau followed two batters later with another RBI two-bagger.
After Cabrera singled, Martinez slugged a two-out homer in the home half for a 3-3 game.
Kubel led off the sixth with a base hit and Thome racked up No. 599 with his two-run blast to left-center. Danny Valencia followed with a walk and scored when a Revere hit rolled all the way to the wall in center, but Minnesota's speedy center fielder was thrown out at home trying to make it an inside-the- park homer. Nonetheless, the visitors led 6-3.
The Tigers came back with two in their turn on a triple from Avila and a Wilson Betemit sacrifice fly.
It was just Minnesota's second win in 10 tries against Detroit this season...Thome joined Barry Bonds, Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth, Willie Mays, Ken Griffey Jr., Sammy Sosa and Rodriguez in the exclusive 600-homer club. His milestone shot was his 36th homer since joining the Twins prior to last season, and his 504th total long ball hit while playing in the American League...Thome reached the mark in 8,167 career at-bats, second only to Ruth...Detroit has surrendered 65 home runs to the 40-year-old slugger, the most of any team in the majors.
- MINNESOTA: 9
Aug 15 9:57 PM
- Ryan Raburn lead-off Home Run (11) to left. Delmon Young due up.
Twins 9, Tigers 6 Bot 7, 0 OutsAug 15 9:14 PM
- NOTE: Jim Thome hit his 600th career home-run.
Twins 9, Tigers 5 Top 7, 2 OutsAug 15 9:08 PM
- Wilson Betemit sacrifice fly to center scored Alex Avila. None on with two out and Austin Jackson due up.
Twins 6, Tigers 5 Bot 6, 2 OutsAug 15 8:49 PM
- Alex Avila triple to right scored Magglio Ordonez. Runner on third with one out and Wilson Betemit due up.
Twins 6, Tigers 4 Bot 6, 1 OutAug 15 8:48 PM
- Ben Revere triple to center scored Danny Valencia. Ben Revere thrown out at home, center to second to end the inning.
Twins 6, Tigers 3 Mid 6Aug 15 8:45 PM
- Jim Thome none-out, two-run Home Run (10) to left scored Jason Kubel. Danny Valencia due up.
Twins 5, Tigers 3 Top 6, 0 OutsAug 15 8:35 PM
- Victor Martinez two-out, two-run Home Run (7) to right scored Miguel Cabrera. Jhonny Peralta due up.
Twins 3, Tigers 3 Bot 3, 2 OutsAug 15 7:54 PM
- Justin Morneau double to center scored Trevor Plouffe. Runner on second with two out and Jason Kubel due up.
Twins 3, Tigers 1 Top 3, 2 OutsAug 15 7:45 PM
- Trevor Plouffe double to left scored Ben Revere. Runner on second with one out and Joe Mauer due up.
Twins 2, Tigers 1 Top 3, 1 OutAug 15 7:43 PM
- Delmon Young two-out, solo Home Run (5) to left. Miguel Cabrera due up.
Twins 0, Tigers 1 Bot 1, 2 OutsAug 15 7:17 PM
- MINNESOTA: 0
Top 1, 0 Outs
Aug 15 7:07 PM
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