Twins blow lead, come back to win

By Andres Ybarra

Associated Press

MINNEAPOLIS -- Manager Ron Gardenhire was relieved Minnesota won the game. He wasn't wild about the way the Twins accomplished the feat.

Pinch-hitter Michael Ryan singled home the go-ahead run in the eighth inning and the Twins beat the Toronto Blue Jays 9-5 Wednesday night. The Blue Jays nearly stole the game, scoring four times in the top of the eighth to make it 5-all.

Ryan and Shannon Stewart bailed out the Twins with singles in the bottom of the eighth, and Minnesota got some help from a wild Terry Adams.


"You end up winning a baseball game, that's what it's all about," Gardenhire said sternly. "On the flip side, kind of disappointing. A 5-1 lead, you don't expect to give it up."

Lew Ford led off the bottom of the eighth with a single and advanced to second on a sacrifice bunt by Henry Blanco.

Adams relieved after Jason Frasor (0-1) intentionally walked Cristian Guzman. Ryan and Stewart followed with RBI singles and Adams threw two wild pitches as the Twins added to their lead.

The first wild pitch came on an intentional walk. He airmailed ball three to Corey Koskie to score Ryan.

"I tried to lob it in there and the ball got away from me," Adams said. "I tried to get it in there and it just took off on me. That's part of the game."

His second wild pitch was to Torii Hunter, scoring Stewart, who had two RBIs and scored twice.

For the second straight game, the Twins' won it in the late innings. On Tuesday night, Minnesota scored four runs in the ninth to win 7-4.

"This has probably been the toughest 48 hours that I've spent since I've taken over this job," Blue Jays manager Carlos Tosca said.


Juan Rincon (4-0) retired one batter in the eighth for his second win in two games.

"We've been here before, we know how to handle this situation," said Ryan, who's batting .435 with six RBIs and 10 hits in 23 at-bats.

Toronto's Chris Woodward tied a career high with four hits. He did it for the first time in Sunday's win at Baltimore.

With two outs in the eighth, Kevin Cash pulled Toronto to 5-4 with a three-run double off reliever J.C. Romero. Josh Phelps and Eric Hinske had singled and Romero walked Orlando Hudson to load the bases for Cash.

"He just couldn't get a third out," Gardenhire said. "I don't know what happened. ... That's not like him. He's been one of our best relievers."

Rincon relieved Romero, and Woodward tied it.

The Blue Jays' comeback spoiled the best performance of the season by Twins starter Kyle Lohse, who matched a season high by throwing six innings. Lohse gave up one run and seven hits.

He'd lasted six innings in two previous games, but gave up a combined nine runs. Lohse said he wasn't too disappointed about not getting the win.


"This is baseball, you just move on," Lohse said.

But Gardenhire didn't try to mask his disappointment.

"He deserved to win tonight and we didn't get it done," he said.

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