for this game

Liriano carries no-hitter into 8th inning

Jun 13, 2011 - 1:04 AM Minneapolis, MN (Sports Network) - Twins left-hander Francisco Liriano came within six outs of throwing his second no-hitter of the season on Sunday.

Instead, he walked away with his fourth win, a two-hit gem in eight innings to lead Minnesota to a 6-1 victory over Texas.

Liriano's no-hit bid was spoiled by Adrian Beltre's leadoff single to centerfield in the eighth.

One inning earlier, his attempt to throw the first perfect game in Twins history was ended when third baseman Luke Hughes couldn't backhand a chopper down the line by Elvis Andrus.

Liriano, who threw the fifth Twins no-hitter in a 1-0 win over the White Sox on May 3, allowed only one run and struck out nine without a walk.

He was trying to become only the sixth major league pitcher in history with two no-hitters in the same season.

"I was locating pitches better today," Liriano said. "My pitches were sharp today, so things are getting better."

Minnesota's offense provided plenty of support.

Michael Cuddyer launched a three-run home run and Luke Hughes collected three hits for the Twins, who have won nine of their last 11 games.

Matt Harrison (5-6) tossed six-plus innings in defeat for Texas, giving up two runs -- one earned -- on five hits while striking out three and walking three.

Yorvit Torrealba drove in Beltre with an RBI single in the eighth for Texas, which has lost five of seven.

Minnesota jumped out to an early lead with a run in its first at-bat. Ben Revere walked to lead off the inning and advanced to second on a wild pitch. He scored on a line-drive single to center by Hughes.

The Twins broke the game open in the seventh, plating five runs to give Liriano a lot of breathing room -- but also a long time to sit on the bench.

Danny Valencia scored the first run of the inning on an error by Andrus and the Twins picked up run number two on a sharp single to left by Alexi Casilla to bring home Rene Rivera. The knockout punch came on Cuddyer's three-run home run, his ninth of the year.

Alex Burnett spelled Liriano in the ninth, pitching a 1-2-3 inning.

Michael Young went 0-for-3 against Liriano.

"He was good, he was getting ahead in the count, which is important," Young said. "He's got the kind of stuff where if he works ahead in the count and keeps his pitch count down, he can go out and give his team a lot of good innings, like he did today. We have to be better, but you never want to take away from when another guy does his job well."

Game Notes

Young played in his 1,573rd career game for the Rangers, tying him with Rafael Palmeiro for the franchise record...The Rangers are 13-10 in day games this season...The Rangers are 16-11 this season against AL Central opponents...Prior to Sunday's game, the Rangers placed catcher Mike Napoli on the 15-day DL and recalled Taylor Teagarden from Round Rock...Harrison was removed in the seventh after taking a line-drive off his arm...It was Liriano's first home win of 2011.