Minneapolis, MN – Mark Reynolds' two-run single in the eighth inning lifted the Baltimore Orioles to a 4-3 win over the Minnesota Twins in the finale of a four-game set at Target Field.
Matt Wieters and Wilson Betemit worked back-to-back walks before both runners advanced one base on Chris Davis' groundout. Reynolds followed with a single to center to clear the bases.
Darren O'Day and Troy Patton each allowed a base runner in the bottom half. However, Pedro Strop worked out of the jam and Jim Johnson tossed a perfect ninth to secure the win for the O's. Johnson is tied with Atlanta's Craig Kimbrel for the major league lead in saves with 28.
"It's been that kind of year," Orioles manager Buck Showalter said. "Our players have a short memory and we've won a lot of games the way we've won the last two days. The way (Johnson) has been the last two nights with one run leads on the road helps. That's a challenge, especially that part of the order."
Davis hit a solo homer and Nick Markakis singled and knocked in a run for Baltimore, which has won its last two since dropping three straight.
Wei-Yin Chen (8-5) earned the win after allowing three runs on six hits over seven frames.
Josh Willingham, Trevor Plouffe and Alexi Casilla each drove in a run for the Twins, who have dropped five of seven since the All-Star break.
Alex Burnett (3-3) was pegged with the loss after allowing two runs in the eighth. He walked Wieters and Betemit before being replaced by Tyler Robertson.
Cole De Vries started for Minnesota and gave up just one run on five hits while striking out five in six innings of work.
"I felt like I got out of one or two situations, I felt good," De Vries said. "I felt in control of the game, and it was one of those days I felt I needed to make a good pitch or a big pitch and I was able to do that. That's what the games all about, execution."
The Twins took a 2-0 lead in the first. Ben Revere singled before moving to second when Joe Mauer walked. Revere then stole third and scored when Willingham ripped a single to left. After a Justin Morneau strike out, Plouffe doubled to the corner in left to plate Mauer.
Davis crushed a solo homer to right in the second to make it 2-1.
Minnesota added a run in the fourth to go up 3-1. Morneau singled and moved to second when Ryan Doumit was hit by a pitch. Brian Dozier then singled to load the bases before Morneau scored on Casilla's sacrifice fly.
Baltimore cut it to 3-2 in the seventh. Davis walked, moved to second on a single before advancing to third on a sacrifice bunt. Markakis then sent a sharp grounder to third but Plouffe's throw home was off target and got away from Mauer as Davis slid across the plate safely.
Baltimore is 18-6 in one-run games this season... Johnson leads the American League in saves. He has never had more than 10 in a season before this year...Plouffe extended his hitting-streak to a career-high 17 games...Minnesota is 7-14 against the AL East this season and 19-30 at home.