(Friday, September 7th)
Final Score: Cleveland 7, Minnesota 6
Minneapolis, MN (Sports Network) - Michael Brantley drove home the go-ahead run during a three-run seventh inning on Friday and the Cleveland Indians held on for a 7-6 victory over the Minnesota Twins in the opener of a four- game series at Target Field.
Russ Canzler went 3-for-4 with a two-run home run and three RBI, Shin-Soo Choo had an RBI single among his three hits and Cord Phelps contributed a pinch-hit RBI for the Indians, who have won three of their last four.
David Huff (1-0) earned the win with 3 1/3 innings of relief work behind starter Jeanmar Gomez, who allowed four runs on three hits and three walks over three innings.
"It was a good comeback win," Indians manager Manny Acta said. "I think David saved the day for us. He came in and shut them down and gave us a chance to come back and win the ball game."
Josh Willingham drove in three runs, while Ben Revere, Justin Morneau and Chris Parmelee each added an RBI for the Twins, who fell for the fourth time in their last five games.
Tyler Robertson (1-2) was tagged with the loss after yielding two runs -- one earned -- on a pair of walks in one inning of relief work.
With the game tied at four, Cleveland took control for good with three runs in the seventh inning. Jason Kipnis began the inning with a walk and went to second on a throwing error by Morneau. Asdrubal Cabrera walked and Carlos Santana grounded into a fielder's choice to put runners on the corners.
Brantley then broke the tie with an RBI single into right and Canzler reached with an infield hit to load the bases with one down.
Casey Kotchman then singled off pitcher Alex Burnett and Phelps drew a pinch- hit, bases-loaded walk to extend the lead to 7-4.
Willingham doubled home Joe Mauer in the eighth to cut the deficit to two.
Facing Chris Perez in the ninth, Trevor Plouffe led off with a bloop double and pinch-runner Alexi Casilla went to third on a groundout by Pedro Florimon Jr. before scoring on a groundout by Revere to cut the lead to 7-6.
Perez fanned pinch-hitter Matt Carson to nail down his 35th save of the season.
Earlier, The Twins got on the board first with a run in the second inning. Willingham and Morneau walked and moved up one base on a groundout by Ryan Doumit before Willingham trotted home on a sacrifice fly by Parmelee.
Florimon began the Minnesota third with a single and Revere followed with a base hit. Mauer walked two batters later to load the bases with one out and Willingham ripped a two-run double down into the right field corner. Morneau drove home Mauer to widen the lead to 4-0.
Cleveland got on the board in the fourth after Canzler laced a two-run shot into the seats in left.
The Indians then tied the game in the fifth. Jack Hannahan doubled to start the inning and scored when Choo ripped a single up the middle. Kipnis followed with a double and Brantley was intentionally walked to load the bases before Canzler smashed a single to third, allowing Kipnis to score the tying run.
"We had some big hits, but couldn't put it together late to get it done," Willingham said. "They did a good job."
Cleveland improved to 15-38 since the All-Star break ... Minnesota starter Liam Hendriks allowed four runs on eight hits with three walks and two strikeouts over five innings. He remains winless this season ... Minnesota finished 1-for-11 with runners in scoring position and left five men on base.
09/08 00:26:37 ET