MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Trevor Plouffe hit a two-run homer and drove in the winning run with a double off the right-field wall to help the Minnesota Twins keep up their power binge in a 7-5 victory over the Miami Marlins on Wednesday night.READ MORE: COVID In Florida: 5,520 New Cases, 9 Deaths Reported On Sunday
Joe Mauer and Byung Ho Park added solo home runs for Minnesota, which tied a season high with four homers in the opening game of the series on Tuesday against Minnesota.
Taylor Rogers (2-0) pitched one inning, and six relievers combined for 3 1/3 scoreless innings. Brandon Kintzler earned his first career save in place of struggling closer Kevin Jepsen.
Ichiro Suzuki had three hits for Miami to come within 29 of 3,000 for his major league career.
Nick Wittgren (1-1) gave up two runs on four hits in 1 1/3 innings.
Minnesota’s lack of offense — particularly with runners in scoring position — was just a part of the team’s slide to the worst record in the American League. A return home has helped the production though, as the Twins have hit 12 home runs in the last six games.
Plouffe hit his first home run in 20 games, a towering shot to left field with Mauer aboard in the third. Plouffe had hit .220 in 26 games since being activated off the disabled list on May 3 from a right intercostal strain.
Mauer started the scoring with an opposite-field home run in the first inning, his seventh in 57 games this season after hitting 10 in 158 games last year. Park connected for his 11th with one out in the sixth to tie the game after Miami took the lead in the top of the inning on Suzuki’s double.
Minnesota starter Ricky Nolasco got through four innings unscathed before running into trouble. Nolasco allowed 11 five runs on 11 hits in 5 2/3 innings.
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Suzuki is 14 hits away from tying Sam Rice (2,985) for 30th in major league history.
Including his 1,278 hits in Nippon Professional Baseball in Japan, Suzuki is seven hits away from Pete Rose’s career hit record of 4,256 hits.
GARDY BACK TO THE BENCH?
Ron Gardenhire said he would “love to manage again” but he’s not actively pursuing managerial jobs. The former Twins manager was hired as a special assistant to Minnesota general manager Terry Ryan in April and said Wednesday he’s enjoying the role, which has him instructing and evaluating in the minor leagues.
However, a desire to manage is still there for the 58-year-old Gardenhire.
“As long as a team has a manager, I have no interest,” Gardenhire said. “If a team decides to make a move and they want to talk to me, I’d be glad to talk to them because I’d love to manage again. But it’s not live or die, take it or leave it. I’d love to do it because I love baseball. But I’m fine, I’m happy with what I’m doing right now.”
Twins: Right-handed reliever Trevor May pitched for the first time since June 1. May had been held out with a back issue similar to what caused him to miss six games last September. He got a groundout on two pitches to end the sixth. … OF Danny Santana (left hamstring strain) has progressed to running and general manager Terry Ryan said he’s running at about 70 percent after going on the disabled list on May 30.
A pair of right-handers start in the final matchup of the three-game series as Ervin Santana (1-5, 4.50 ERA) starts for Minnesota against Tom Koehler (3-6, 4.50). Santana has lost his last three starts while allowing 14 runs in 16 2/3 innings. Koehler hasn’t allowed more than three runs in his last six starts.MORE NEWS: ‘Work Gyms’ Helping Remote Employees Be More Productive
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