SEATTLE (AP) — Kyle Gibson pitched one-run ball into the seventh inning and the Minnesota Twins took advantage of two errors on one play by Robinson Cano in a 2-1 win over the Seattle Mariners on Thursday night.
Minnesota avoided a three-game sweep and snapped Seattle’s five-game winning streak thanks in part to unexpected blunders from one of the best defensive second basemen in the game.
With two out in the fifth inning and a runner on second, Cano misplayed Joe Mauer’s slow grounder. He compounded the mistake by trying to catch Ehire Adrianza at third base, but Cano’s throw was low, skipped past Kyle Seager and allowed Adrianza to score.
Gibson (3-4) managed to quiet Seattle’s hot bats, pitching into the seventh inning for the first time the season. The Mariners were averaging 8.17 runs per game so far in June, but were limited to Ben Gamel’s sacrifice fly to score Jarrod Dyson.
A day after giving up a game-winning home run in the ninth, Minnesota closer Brandon Kintzler got the final three outs for his 16th save.
Jason Castro homered off Seattle starter Christian Bergman (3-3) in the fourth, but was the only major mistake made by the right-hander.
Gibson lasted just one batter into the seventh, getting pulled after giving up a leadoff single to Taylor Motter. He allowed five hits and struck out four. He also got one big defensive assist thanks to
by Byron Buxton. With two on and two out in the fifth, Cano lined a shot to deep center field. Buxton raced back and at the last moment reached above his head falling backward to make the catch and likely save two runs.
Seattle threatened late, getting the tying run to second base in the seventh and eighth innings. With one out in the eighth, Mike Zunino lined a shot back up the middle that reliever Taylor Rogers snared and doubled Cano off second base to end the threat.
Right-hander Chris Heston was claimed off waivers by the Twins and arrived in Seattle late Wednesday night. For now, Heston will work out of the bullpen for the Twins, manager Paul Molitor said, but Minnesota is in need of a starter for Sunday’s game at San Francisco and has a doubleheader on the horizon next week against Cleveland. Heston started one game earlier this season for Seattle.
Mariners: DH Nelson Cruz was out of the lineup for a second straight day due a strained right calf. Cruz wanted to play on Thursday but was held out for another day. He’s expected to be in the lineup on Friday. … LHP Drew Smyly (flexor strain) will throw his first bullpen session on Saturday. Smyly did light throwing from halfway up the mound on Thursday.
Twins: Ervin Santana (7-3) looks to rebound from giving up seven runs in four innings in his last start as Minnesota opens a series at San Francisco.
Mariners: Sam Gaviglio (2-1) allowed just one run in five innings in his last start. He gets the start as Seattle opener a weekend series against Toronto.
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