Peter Bourjos runs Angels into comeback win over Twins
Peter Bourjos led off the ninth inning with a triple and scored on Maicer Izturis' line-drive single, capping a furious comeback that lifted the Angels to a 6-5 victory over the Twins at Target Field.
Bourjos, who also made three splendid defensive plays in center field, started the game-winning rally with a line drive that one-hopped to the wall in left-center. And though Delmon Young played the carom cleanly, the speedy Bourjos outran the ball, turning what should have been a double at best into his league-leading sixth triple of the season. Izturis then followed with his first hit of the game, putting the Angels in front for the first time on the night.
Bourjos and Izturis keyed the Angels' five-run, eighth-inning rally as well, with Bourjos leading off with a single and Izturis walking. The Twins answered by calling left-hander Dusty Hughes in from the bullpen, and Erick Aybar greeted him by driving his first pitch into the left-field bleachers for a three-run home run. With that one hit, the Angels matched their scoring total from their previous 37 innings on the road -- but they weren't done.
Bobby Abreu followed with a single, and Hunter doubled, putting the tying runs in scoring position with no outs. Alberto Callaspo got one run in with an infield single, bringing up the newly acquired Russell Branyan, who lofted a two-strike pitch to left field to score Hunter and tie the score.
That wiped out a brilliant performance by Twins right-hander Scott Baker, who held the Angels to six hits in seven scoreless innings. The Twins' batters, meanwhile, were proving rude hosts to Angels starter Tyler Chatwood.
Denard Span led off the game with a walk, moved to second on an error and then scored on Alexi Casilla's double to left-center that just eluded a diving Bourjos after a long run.
Minnesota doubled its lead in the third when Jason Kubel singled to right to score Casilla, who had tripled. Kubel drove in two more runs to make it 4-0 in the fifth -- and the Twins would have had another in the sixth, but Bourjos reached into the Angels' bullpen in left-center to rob Jim Thome of his 594th career home run.
Scott Downs (3-1), who retired the only two batters he faced in the eighth, earned the win. The loss went to Jim Hoey, who was called up Friday from triple A. Jordan Walden survived a shaky ninth inning, retiring Young on a full-count pitch with two runners on, to earn his 11th save.
Aybar, Hunter and Callaspo finished with three hits each for the Angels, who got 11 hits from the two through six spots in the lineup. Callaspo extended his hitting streak to five games while Hunter's three-hit game was his first in a month.
Casilla had two doubles and a triple and scored twice for the Twins, who also got two hits from third baseman Danny Valencia and Morneau, and two hits and three RBIs from Kubel.
-- Kevin Baxter in Minneapolis
Photo: Angels first baseman Mark Trumbo can't catch the pickoff throw as Minnesota's Denard Span dives back to the bag on Friday night. Credit: Jim Mone / Associated Press