MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Jorge Polanco hit a tying homer and Jose Miranda delivered a game-ending single as the Minnesota Twins again rallied for two runs in the bottom of the ninth inning and beat the Baltimore Orioles 4-3 Saturday.
A day after Byron Buxton hit a two-run homer in the ninth off Jorge López for a 3-2 victory, Minnesota came back once more.
The two wins come after Minnesota lost back-to-back games to walk-offs by the Cleveland Guardians. The Twins are the first team in American League history to follow up back-to-back walk-off losses with back-to-back walk-off wins within a single season.
“It feels like every game we’ve played for a while now has kind of come to a conclusion with a lot of cheering and a lot of excitement on one side of the field, but we’ll take these,” Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said. “It’s two in a row now where we’ve needed something really big against one of the better bullpens in the league.”
Polanco began the ninth with a home run against López (4-4) that made it 3-all. Alex Kirilloff doubled with one out, Gary Sánchez singled and Miranda followed with a single to win it.
Miranda had entered the game in the top of the ninth at third base after Gio Urshela was pulled for a pinch-runner in the eighth.
“I knew my plan was trying to get the run in,” Miranda said. “So when it go to two strikes, I was just more focused and just trying to put the ball in play. And then I got a good pitch to hit, and I drove it.”
Minnesota starter Sonny Gray pitched five innings, allowing three runs on six hits and three walks. Jharel Cotton pitched three scoreless innings in relief and Emilio Pagán (4-4) worked the ninth.
Jordan Lyles threw 6 1/3 innings of one-run ball for Baltimore, giving up four hits and striking out seven. At one point, he retired 12 batters in a row. Nick Gordon hit a solo home run in the seventh, cutting the Twins’ deficit to 3-1 and finishing Lyles.
“Our starting pitching has been great on this road trip,” Orioles manager Brandon Hyde said. “Jordan going into the seventh with a shutout and Gordon got him, but we’ve got to help out these pitchers a little bit. We scored three runs today and two last night. We didn’t add on, and that doesn’t help.”
Hyde said he plans to give López Sunday off after the reliever has given up leads in the last two games.
“They had a really good plan to me and I couldn’t just command it where it should be,” López said. “I just have to keep concentrating, keep focusing on my execution. It’s part of the game.”
Anthony Santander hit his 15th home run for Baltimore. Orioles star Trey Mancini was back in the lineup after being limited to pinch-hitting duties on Friday with a right hand injury and went 1 for 3.
A single by Urshela and a double by Luis Arraez set up Carlo Correa's sacrifice fly.
Twins pitcher Randy Dobnak (right middle finger strain) had a setback in his recovery and received a cortisone shot in his finger on Friday 1. Dobnak has experienced several setbacks with his finger this season. He has ruptured two of the pulley tendons, with has caused strain on others tendons in the finger. He has not pitched at any level this season.
“It’s been frustrating, because like I said before, the day-to-day stuff, everything is fine -- it’s only when I throw,” Dobnak said. “And the fact that it’s gotten good to the point where I’m full go off the mound, and then it’s like -- setback! What’s a man got to do?”
Dobnak will rest for about two weeks before attempting to resume rehab. If all goes well, he said he could return to pitching in about six weeks.
Orioles: RHP Kyle Bradish (right shoulder inflammation) will throw off the mound Sunday for the first time since he went on the the 15-day injured list retroactive to June 21. ... INF Ramón Urías (left oblique strain) is expected to be in the lineup for Double-A Bowie as he begins a rehab assignment.
Twins: C Ryan Jeffers (right thumb contusion) was scratched from the lineup. He was injured taking warmup pitches before the first inning on Friday. He was removed from that game in the fifth inning. ... RHP Trevor Megill (right shoulder impingement) was scheduled to make his first rehab appearance for Triple-A St. Paul. He went on the 15-day injured list on June 19
LHP Devin Smeltzer (4-1, 2.86) gets the nod for Minnesota in the series finale against the Orioles. Smeltzer has allowed three or fewer runs in each of his first three home starts this season. RHP Tyler Wells (6-4, 3.23) will start for Baltimore. Wells holds a 2.16 ERA in three career appearances (one start) against the Twins.
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