Ozuna, Marlins blast Twins 10-3 to avoid sweep
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) For whatever reason, the Miami Marlins were having a heck of a time with the American League's worst team 2 1/2 games into their three-game series.
All of a sudden, the bats got going and the Marlins ran away with the finale.
Marcell Ozuna had four hits and three RBIs, and the Marlins broke open the game with a seven-run seventh inning to beat the Minnesota Twins 10-3 on Thursday night.
''Stuff like that doesn't happen often so when it does, it's fun, you've got to enjoy it,'' said Christian Yelich, who had two hits and an RBI. ''That's what happens when guys string a lot good at-bats together. Guys put some good swings, hit the ball hard and it was finding holes.''
Chris Johnson hit a pinch-hit, two-run homer in the seventh and the Marlins bounced back in a big way after dropping the first two games of the series to the lowly Twins. Tom Koehler (4-6) gave up two runs, four hits and struck out six in six innings.
Robbie Grossman hit a two-run double for the Twins (18-41). Ervin Santana (1-6) gave up five runs and nine hits in 6 1/3 innings and Minnesota's bullpen was bludgeoned in the seventh.
''They don't miss a fastball, for sure today,'' Santana said.
Twins right-hander Phil Hughes had to be helped off the field in the ninth inning after taking a line drive off the bat of J.T. Realmuto off his left knee.
Koehler entered the game averaging 5.4 walks per nine innings, the second-most among qualifying starters. His only walk was an intentional one Thursday. He faced the minimum number of batters through the first five innings before the Twins finally got to him in the sixth.
Grossman's double in the sixth tied the game at 2, but in the story of the Twins' season, they quickly squandered the momentum.
''I gave two runs back there in the sixth, so to have the guys respond and put up a nice crooked number there, they picked me up and it was huge,'' Koehler said.
The Marlins took a 9-2 lead in the seventh, pounding out eight hits and scoring one run on a wild pitch by reliever Trevor May, who couldn't get an out before getting yanked by Paul Molitor.
''They just kept swinging,'' Molitor said. ''It happened fast.''
Martin Prado, Yelich and Adeiny Hechavarria all had two hits and an RBI for the Marlins.
Ichiro Suzuki had two hits and an RBI for the Marlins and is 27 hits from 3,000 for his career. He had seven hits in the series to raise his average to .333.
''He makes it look easy,'' Santana said. ''He's just waiting for one pitch and he don't miss it.''
Marlins manager Don Mattingly said before the game he was hopeful that struggling slugger Giancarlo Stanton's fortunes were about to turn after he posted his first multi-hit game in nearly a month on Wednesday night.
Stanton was 0 for 5 with four strikeouts and grounded into a double play, dropping his batting average to .197.
Marlins: Selected LHP Braxton Garrett from Florence High School in Alabama with the seventh pick. He had an 0.53 ERA, with 131 strikeouts in 65 1/3 innings as a senior.
Twins: Selected OF Alex Kirilloff from Pittsburgh with the 15th pick. Kirilloff was home schooled but is hitting .544 with three homers and 23 RBIs in 19 games for Plum High School.
Twins: Hughes was taken for X-rays, which were negative. He is listed as day to day. ... OF Oswaldo Arcia left the game with a right foot contusion. The Twins said X-rays were negative and his is listed as day to day.
Marlins: LHP Justin Nicolino (2-3, 4.37) starts the series opener at Arizona against LHP Patrick Corbin (3-5, 4.73).
Twins: Tyler Duffey (2-4, 4.79) starts the opener against Boston's Steven Wright (6-4, 2.29) in slugger David Ortiz's final series in Minnesota, where his career began.