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Twins shut down A’s late to sweep series

Sportsnaut
May 8, 2022; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Oakland Athletics pinch hitter Tony Kemp (5) slides into third base as he advances on a fly out and Minnesota Twins third baseman Gio Urshela (15) goes for the throw in the ninth inning at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports

Jorge Polanco drove in two runs and five relievers combined for 6 2/3 scoreless innings as the Minnesota Twins completed a three-game sweep of the Oakland Athletics with a 4-3 victory on Sunday afternoon at Minneapolis.

Cody Stashak (3-0) replaced injured starter Chris Paddack in the third inning and tossed 2 2/3 scoreless innings. Twins right-hander Emilio Pagan retired Cristian Pache with runners at second and third in the ninth for his fourth save.

Minnesota has won 14 of its last 17 games, including nine straight at home. Gilberto Celestino recorded the first three-hit game of his career in the victory.

Sean Murphy and Seth Brown had two hits apiece for Oakland, which has lost nine straight games and 12 of its last 14.

Daulton Jefferies (1-5) yielded four runs on seven hits over five innings and lost his fifth straight start. He struck out three with no walks.

Chad Pinder delivered a two-out RBI single off Paddack in the first inning to give Oakland its first lead of the series.

Minnesota pulled even in the second inning when Gary Sanchez hit a leadoff ground-rule double, moved to third on a groundout, and scored on Gio Urshela’s sacrifice fly.

Oakland moved ahead with two runs in the third. Paddack allowed a one-out single to Sheldon Neuse and a Murphy double before exiting the game with right elbow inflammation.

Stashak replaced Paddack and gave up Brown’s two-run double before Pinder and Kevin Smith each flied out to end the inning. Paddack allowed three runs on five hits over 2 1/3 innings. He struck out four with no walks.

The Twins pulled ahead with three runs in the third inning. Jose Miranda doubled in a run off Jefferies with one out before Polanco followed with a two-run single.

Polanco had five hits in the series and is 12-for-35 (.343) with nine RBIs during a nine-game hitting streak.

The A’s were held without a hit after Brown’s two-run single in the third inning before threatening in the ninth. Tony Kemp drew a one-out walk and Christian Bethancourt singled before Pagan retired Elvis Andrus and Pache to end the game.

Minnesota played without outfielder Byron Buxton, who is day-to-day with a hip strain.

–Field Level Media