Twins top Angels in pitchers' duelMay 29, 2011 - 3:01 AM Minneapolis, MN (Sports Network) - Danny Valencia delivered a bases-loaded hit in the 10th inning, scoring the game's only run to lift the Twins to a 1-0 win over the Angels at Target Field.
Justin Morneau, Michael Cuddyer and Delmon Young also singled with one out in the 10th to load the bases -- a sudden output of offense in a game that had, until then, been dominated by pitching.
Twins starter Anthony Swarzak carried a no-hitter into the eighth inning, but had it broken up by Peter Bourjos' one-out double -- the only hit allowed by the Minnesota staff.
Barely out-pitched, Angels starter Jered Weaver gave up just two hits in nine innings.
"They both were letting it hang on every pitch," Angels manager Mike Scioscia said of the starters. "Both pitchers had great poise to be able to challenge hitters and make pitches when you know that one mistake could be the ball game."
But the game was left to the bullpens. Matt Capps and Alex Burnett (1-3) pitched one perfect inning apiece for the Twins, while Hisanori Takahashi (1-1) and Kevin Jepsen couldn't hold the door closed for the Angels.
Minnesota snapped a two-game losing streak, improving to just 2-6 in its last eight games.
The Angels, after erupting for five runs in the eighth inning to win the opener of this three-game series 6-5 on Friday, managed just three baserunners in this one.
Indeed, Swarzak sparkled in his 14th career start.
Pitching for the injured Francisco Liriano, who tossed a no-hitter for the Twins earlier this month, Swarzak walked just two batters -- one in the second inning, one in the third -- and struck out four in his eight innings.
He retired 15 consecutive batters until Bourjos, teeing off on a first-pitch slider, roped a double down the left field line with one out in the eighth. He was stranded at second base, however, when Swarzak retired pinch hitters Hank Conger and Alexi Amarista.
"I knew he was going to be up there looking for something to hit and he got a good pitch to hit," Swarzak said. "If I could have it back, I would take it back."
The Twins offense was stagnant as well. They got a single from Young in the second inning, but not another hit until Denard Span singled in the sixth.
Span moved up on Weaver's errant pickoff attempt, but Weaver then picked him off second base for the inning's final out. Twins manager Ron Gardenhire was ejected by second base umpire Andy Fletcher for arguing the call.
Weaver retired nine of the final 10 batters he faced -- he worked around a one-out walk to Trevor Plouffe in the ninth. But Takahashi gave up a one-out single to Morneau and Jepsen came in to allow back-to-back singles to Cuddyer and Young before Valencia stroked a hit into right-center field for the win.
Swarzak snapped a six-start losing streak, but remained winless since 2009. He said he started thinking about the chance to pitch a no-hitter after the fifth inning.
"I was thinking about it more after the seventh. It was one of those things where I tried to stay ahead (of hitters)," he said. "[Bourjos] just jumped on a first-pitch slider and hit it down the line."
Weaver gave up two walks and struck out seven. He snapped a four-start losing streak as well in the no-decision. That spell came after he started the season 6-0.
Liriano was scratched with soreness in his pitching shoulder. Twins designated hitter Jim Thome was also sitting out with a shoulder problem, but struck out as a pinch-hitter leading off the ninth...Swarzak is 3-9 in his career, including 0-2 this season. He didn't pitch in the majors in 2010.
- LOS ANGELES: 0
May 28 10:01 PM
- Danny Valencia single to right scored pinch-runner Jason Repko with one out to end the game.
Angels 0, Twins 1 Bot 10, 1 OutMay 28 10:00 PM
- LOS ANGELES: 0
Top 1, 0 Outs
May 28 7:17 PM
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