Twins
Mets
6 - 2 Final
  for this game

Hunter, Mauer lead Twins over slumping Mets

Jun 21, 2007 - 3:37 AM FLUSHING, New York (Ticker) -- The Minnesota Twins flexed their muscles again and delivered yet another blow to the New York Mets.

Torii Hunter hit a two-run homer and Joe Mauer had a two-run double as the Twins won the rubber game of a three-game interleague series, 6-2, over the slumping Mets.

Scott Baker pitched five effective innings for the Twins, who have won seven of their last 10 games after a 1-5 stretch. Minnesota has scored 26 runs in its last four contests.

The Twins are trying to stay within striking distance of Cleveland and Detroit in the American League Central. They are currently five games back.

"Some good things happened for us tonight," Minnesota manager Ron Gardenhire said. "We're going to need all 25 guys if we're going to catch them."

The Mets, meanwhile, have seen their lead in the National League East dwindle to one game after losing for the 13th time in 16 games. New York, which won the series opener, 8-1, has now dropped six straight series.

"We're just not getting the job done," catcher Paul Lo Duca said. "This game is about results. This town is about results."

Baker (2-2), who may have been pitching to retain his spot in the rotation after three straight sub-par starts, allowed two runs and seven hits with no walks and three strikeouts.

"I was not doing anything differently than the previous starts," said Baker, who insisted that the thought of losing his rotation spot was not on his mind during the game. "It just worked out tonight. What good would that do? Absolutely not."

Gardenhire made liberal use of his bullpen, using four relievers over the final four innings. Dennys Reyes, Matt Guerrier, Pat Neshek and closer Joe Nathan combined to allow just two hits.

Hunter put the Twins ahead to stay, 3-2, with a fifth-inning blast off Oliver Perez. Mauer drew a leadoff walk and, two outs later, Hunter belted his 15th home run of the season on a 1-2 pitch. It was the first homer in 90 at-bats for the Twins dating to a walk-off blast by Justin Morneau on Sunday against the Milwaukee Brewers.

"This game is about making adjustments," said Hunter, who noted that the Twins tried to wait out Perez and force him to throw more pitches. "He put a fastball inside and that's where I was looking for it."

The Twins padded their lead with three runs in the sixth. Lew Ford doubled and pinch hitter Mike Redmond greeted reliever Joe Smith with a one-out RBI single. After a walk to Luis Castillo, Scott Schoeneweis replaced Smith and allowed an opposite-field two-run double to left by Mauer.

Perez (7-6) was charged with four runs and five hits with five walks in 5 1/3 innings.

"I was all over the place," Perez said.

The control problems that plagued Perez early in the season have resurfaced. The lefthander has walked 13 batters in his last three outings.

"His slider wasn't as good as it has been," Lo Duca said. "He just wasn't as sharp."

The Mets opened the scoring in the first when Lo Duca doubled off the wall in left-center field and scored on a single by Carlos Beltran.

The Twins tied it in the third on an RBI triple by Morneau that scored Michael Cuddyer, who walked with two outs. New York regained the lead in their half of the third on an RBI single by David Wright.

New York put two runners with two outs in the eighth off Neshek before Jose Valentin lined out to first.

Minnesota's Castillo doubled to lead off the game, snapping an 0-for-21 drought.








  • ML
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    MINNESOTA 0 0 1 0 2 3 0 0 0 6 7 0
    NY METS 1 0 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 9 0 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: MIN - SCOTT BAKER, DENNYS REYES (6TH), MATT GUERRIER (6TH), PAT
    NESHEK (8TH), JOE NATHAN (9TH) AND JOE MAUER
    NYM - OLIVER PEREZ, JOE SMITH (6TH), SCOTT SCHOENEWEIS

    Jun 20 10:10 PM


  • ML
    AT NY METS - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY JOE MAUER SCORED JASON TYNER AND LUIS CASTILLO.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, J MAUER ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: MINNESOTA 6
    NY METS 2 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: M CUDDYER (.297, 0-FOR-1, 2 BB)

    Twins vs. MetsJun 20 9:06 PM


  • ML
    AT NY METS - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MIKE REDMOND SCORED LEW FORD.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, M REDMOND ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: MINNESOTA 4
    NY METS 2 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: L CASTILLO (.307, 1-FOR-3)

    Twins vs. MetsJun 20 8:59 PM


  • ML
    AT NY METS - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY TORII HUNTER (15) TO LEFT WITH 2 OUT IN
    THE 5TH OFF OLIVER PEREZ SCORED JOE MAUER.
    CURRENT SCORE: MINNESOTA 3, NY METS 2
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: J CIRILLO (.258, 1-FOR-2)

    Twins vs. MetsJun 20 8:37 PM


  • ML
    AT NY METS - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY DAVID WRIGHT SCORED PAUL LO DUCA.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D WRIGHT ON FIRST, C BELTRAN ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: MINNESOTA 1
    NY METS 2 BOTTOM, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR NY METS: C DELGADO (.226, 0-FOR-1)

    Twins vs. MetsJun 20 8:08 PM


  • ML
    AT NY METS - SCORING UPDATE
    TRIPLE BY JUSTIN MORNEAU SCORED MICHAEL CUDDYER.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J MORNEAU ON THIRD, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: MINNESOTA 1
    NY METS 1 TOP, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: T HUNTER (.299, 0-FOR-1)

    Twins vs. MetsJun 20 7:52 PM


  • ML
    AT NY METS - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY CARLOS BELTRAN SCORED PAUL LO DUCA.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, C BELTRAN ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: MINNESOTA 0
    NY METS 1 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR NY METS: D WRIGHT (.286, 12 HR, 38 RBI)

    Twins vs. MetsJun 20 7:26 PM