Gibson And The Twins Beat AL Central-Leading Tigers 2-0
DETROIT -- Kyle Gibson faced Miguel Cabrera with the bases loaded in the fifth inning, clinging to a one-run lead. He delivered the pitch and got the result he wanted.
"It was a big pitch," Gibson acknowledged. "If you want to win a game and you want have a good outing, you've got to make that pitch against one of the best hitters in the game."
Gibson threw seven innings and Eduardo Escobar hit a solo homer in the third and drew a bases-loaded walk in the ninth, helping Minnesota win three straight for the first time in nearly a month and pull within three games of the AL Central-leading Tigers.
Gibson (6-5) allowed five hits and two walks while striking out three. He threw seven scoreless innings for a second straight start and held an opponent without a run for the third time in four outings.
Casey Fien pitched a perfect eighth and Glen Perkins gave up one hit in the ninth, closing the game for his 17th save in 19 chances.
Drew Smyly (3-4) gave up one run, four hits and three walks over six innings.
Al Alburquerque and Joba Chamberlain each threw a scoreless inning of relief.
Minnesota added to its lead in the ninth against former Twin Joe Nathan.
Josh Willingham reached on a throwing error by shortstop Eugenio Suarez to lead off the ninth. Pinch-runner Sam Fuld advanced on a wild pitch and got to third on a groundout. Nathan later gave up a two-out walk to Trevor Plouffe and hit Eduardo Nunez to load the bases. Escobar walked to make it 2-0, chasing Nathan, who was booed as he walked to the dugout.
Phil Coke entered and struck out Danny Santana to keep the Tigers within two runs.
Since a 27-12 start, Detroit has lost 17 of 24 games and it has struggled even more at home lately, losing 11 of 15 at Comerica Park.
Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.