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Harris homers to lead Twins past Tampa Bay

Associated Press

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Brendan Harris homered and Justin Morneau and Carlos Gomez also drove in runs Sunday to help the Minnesota Twins avoid a weekend sweep with a 3-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays.

Nick Blackburn (5-2) pitched six strong innings, allowing two runs and seven hits, and the Twins scored all their runs off Matt Garza (4-4) to beat their former teammate and end a three-game losing streak.

Carlos Pena hit his AL-leading 17th homer for the Rays. Matt Joyce also homered off Blackburn, however Garza — facing his former team for the first time — was unable to hold a 2-1 lead after limiting the Twins to two hits over the first five innings.

Twins reliever Jose Mijares pitched out of a jam with the tying run on third base in the eighth. Joe Nathan worked a perfect ninth for his ninth save in 11 opportunities.

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Garza was acquired in the November 2007 trade that also brought shortstop Jason Bartlett to the Rays as part of a six-player transaction that sent Harris and outfielder Delmon Young to Minnesota.

Denard Sapn legged out a bunt and later scored on Justin Morneau’s RBI single that made it 2-2 in the sixth.

Gomez’s bloop single, the third straight hit off Garza, snapped the tie in the seventh. Garza allowed three runs and seven hits in seven innings.

SATURDAY

Rays 5, Twins 2

David Price struck out 11 to earn his first regular-season win in the majors, and Evan Longoria got his 55th RBI of the season to help the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Twins 5-2 on Saturday.

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