Escobar's HR leads Twins' balanced 8-5 win over Seattle
SEATTLE (AP) Minnesota pitcher Trevor May could not avoid a line drive but it could have been worse.
May exited in the fourth inning Saturday night when Seattle third baseman Kyle Seager's liner smacked him on the right elbow. The diagnosis is a bruise and X-rays were negative. He is day to day.
''You never want to leave a game before the fifth because it really taxes your bullpen,'' May said.
But sevens were lucky for the Twins, who collectively rallied to beat the Mariners 8-5.
Seven players drove in a run. Seven players scored a run and it took seven pitchers to hold off the Mariners. Tim Stauffer (1-0) earned the win and Glen Perkins picked up his fourth save in four chances.
''There were a lot of contributions,'' Twins manager Paul Molitor said. ''We talked about it, if we're going to be effective offensively it's going to have to be balanced.''
Eduardo Escobar hit a home run. Eduardo Nunez had two hits and two RBIs and the Twins took advantage of three Mariners errors and two wild pitches.
Austin Jackson had a two-run home run for the Mariners in the seventh, his second.
''We shot ourselves in the foot quite a bit tonight,'' Mariners manager Lloyd McClendon said. ''Our philosophy around here is real simple - nine innings, 27 outs. We didn't do that tonight.''
May said the he ''absolutely'' expects to make his next start. Much will depend on if the swelling goes down and how it feels Sunday.
''I fully expect to be right on track,'' May said. ''It's something we'll address tomorrow. But there's no stiffness, no pain, just a little tender on the spot.''
After the Twins capitalized on two first-inning Mariner errors for a 1-0 lead, Nelson Cruz drove in a pair on a double down the right-field line.
That gave Cruz a league-leading 20 RBIs. It's the most by a Mariners player in April since 2003, when Bret Boone had 21. The club record is 30 by Ken Griffey Jr., in 1997. There are still five games remaining in the month.
Another error in the fifth - the second by Seager - set up the Twins' go-ahead rally, as Nunez and Kurt Suzuki hit successive RBI singles for a 4-3 lead.
It was a hard-luck outing for James Paxton (0-2). Three of his four runs allowed in 4 2-3 innings were unearned. He gave up five hits, struck out seven and walked three.
Robinson Cano had two hits to extend his hitting streak to 11 games. He's hitting .409 (18 of 44) during that span.
Mariners: RHP Hisashi Iwakuma, placed on the DL Friday, had a second more detailed MRI before the game to determine the extent of a strained muscle under his right arm. He'll be out two to four weeks.
Twins: Ricky Nolasco (right elbow inflammation), who has been on the DL since April 11 and missed 15 games, will have his first rehab assignment Sunday for Class A Cedar Rapids.
Mariners: LHP Roenis Elias has yet to be added to the roster, but it's no secret that he will be promoted from Triple-A Tacoma to start Sunday. He was in the clubhouse before the game. He fills the rotation spot for Iwakuma. Elias, one of the final cuts in training camp, was 10-12 with a 3.85 ERA last season.
Twins: RHP Kyle Gibson (1-2, 5.87) makes his fourth start of the season Sunday, coming off a 7-1 loss to Kansas City Monday. He gave up four runs, four hits and walked four in five innings. He is 2-1 with a 3.00 ERA in four career starts against Seattle.
MAY CONTINGENT BUMMED
May being removed after being hit with the line drive was a disappointment to a large, enthusiastic contingent behind home plate, said to be around 100, from May's hometown of Kelso, Washington.
BOOTS AND BOBBLES
The three errors committed by the Mariners give them 19 this season. That ties them with Milwaukee for second most in baseball, one behind Oakland, which has 20.