The Minnesota Twins returned from the All-Star break picking up where they left off, banging out 15 hits off of Texas starter Kevin Millwood(and two relievers) to back the strong pitching performance of Glen Perkins in a 6-0 victory on Friday night. Perkins (7-2) hit his spots with his pitches over six innings, scattering three hits, to get the win. He was followed by Craig Breslow, Jesse Crain, and Boof Bonser, each contributing a scoreless inning, and shutting out the high-powered Texas offense for the first time all year, including the end of second baseman Ian Kinsler's 25-game hitting streak, as he went 0 for 4. Perkins' strong outing lowered his ERA to a season-low 3.84.
For the offense, Brian Buscher and Jason Kubel led the way with two RBI's apiece for the Twins, and Delmon Young chipped in with four hits in as many at-bats, raising his average to .294. Young has been hitting .341 since June 1st. It was a tight pitchers' duel until the bottom of the seventh, when the Twins broke the game open against Millwood(and reliever Jamey Wright) with six consecutive batters reaching base, leading to four runs, and effectively putting the game away.
The Twins return to action at 6:10 pm tonight, for the second game of the series, where veteran pitcher Livan Hernandez (9-6, 5.44 ERA) will square off against Texas pitcher Matt Harrison (1-0, 6.52) at the Metrodome.