Escobar Homers Twice As Twins Beat Indians 7-4
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Losing six of seven games had the Minnesota Twins searching for answers, with manager Paul Molitor addressing his team and second baseman Brian Dozier calling a meeting.
The two wanted to discuss the miscues that had plagued playoff-hopeful Minnesota this season. Eduardo Escobar and Jose Berrios then helped lift the Twins over the Cleveland Indians.
Escobar hit two homers and drove in four runs, Berrios pitched six effective innings and Minnesota pulled away for a 7-4 win Friday night.
"Everybody stay strong, that's the most important," Escobar said. "Play hard no matter what happens, it's the most important. Everybody working hard, so you see today everybody run hard, play hard."
Dozier opened the bottom of the first inning with a double off the right-field wall in a two-hit night. Escobar's three-run homer in the first started the scoring against Indians starter Carlos Carrasco (6-4).
Escobar added a solo shot, his 10th of the season, in the seventh as the Twins snapped a three-game losing streak. The 5-foot-10, 185-pound infielder has four multi-homer games in his career and two this season.
"I'm not a big guy," Escobar said. "I don't go to home plate and think about a home run. I concentrate, look at the ball, swing hard."
Edwin Encarnacion homered for Cleveland, which had its season-high six game-winning streak snapped.
Berrios (6-5) allowed four runs and five hits with seven strikeouts. Fernando Rodney secured his 12th save in 15 chances, which includes nine straight conversions.
"We're still trying to tighten up and watching some of the things that are maybe not as apparent to people just following the ball, things we need to do," Molitor said. "The guys were made aware of it and trying to take it to heart and apply it, and as long as it doesn't make them more nervous trying not to make a mistake."
Carrasco had his second-shortest outing of the season with 3 2/3 innings. Miguel Sano's RBI double chased Carrasco after the right-hander tied a season high with six runs on seven hits and three walks.
"He wasn't real crisp, kind of like the game in Milwaukee where he pitched himself into it," Indians manager Terry Francona said. "I thought they also went down and got a couple good pitches. Escobar went down to get a breaking ball a couple times. Really was a difference-maker for them, and it wasn't a bad pitch."