Polanco HR gives Twins 1-0 win; A’s lose 8th straight

May 7, 2022, 2:16 AM | Updated: 4:27 pm
Oakland Athletics second baseman Tony Kemp (5) reacts after striking out in the eighth inning of a ...

Oakland Athletics second baseman Tony Kemp (5) reacts after striking out in the eighth inning of a baseball game against the Minnesota Twins, Saturday, May 7, 2022, in Minneapolis. Minnesota won 1-0. (AP Photo/Stacy Bengs)

(AP Photo/Stacy Bengs)

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Byron Buxton has been a key part of the Minnesota Twins’ early-season success, which ran to 13 wins in 16 games on Saturday afternoon with a 1-0 win against the Oakland Athletics.

Minnesota hopes Buxton will be available to help keep the run going.

The Twins beat Oakland on a solo homer by Jorge Polanco with four pitchers combining for the shutout, but the oft-injured Buxton left the game in the eighth inning with right hip tightness.

“I don’t know the level of concern,” said Minnesota bench coach Jayce Tingler, who is acting manager while Rocco Baldelli is out with COVID-19. “As you guys know, he’s been battling a little bit. But certainly the hand, the knee and the hip, all three things of those. … Hopefully, we get some good treatment and just kind of see where we’re at from there.”

Buxton reached first base in the first inning following a strikeout and wild pitch. The speedy outfielder lunged for first base to reach safely and hurt his hip. Tingler said the hip tightened on Buxton, who is tied for the major league lead with nine home runs this season, and eventually he had to be replaced.

Minnesota’s pitchers were an otherwise bright spot, combining to strike out 15 while allowing just three hits.

Griffin Jax (2-0) earned the win with 1 2/3 innings in relief. Jhoan Duran struck out five in two innings for his second save, but the electric right-hander escaped after walking and hitting a batter in the ninth.

Oakland has lost eight in a row.

“It’s part of this grind that we’re in,” Athletics manager Mark Kotsay said. “There in the ninth, again, we got guys on base. These guys are continuing to fight. We’re in a tough stretch and we got to continue to stay together as a group, and just get through this, find a way to win a baseball game.”

Sonny Gray returned from the injured list to make the start for the Twins after recovering from a hamstring strain. Gray pitched four innings, giving up two hits and two walks with seven strikeouts.

Danny Coulombe followed Gray and got four outs.

“I was kind of feeling a little bit better, and a little bit better,” Gray said. “I thought maybe they’ll let me go to the fifth, maybe they’ll let me. I felt like I could have, but I also understood. I started feeling better, which is good, but then Danny came in and Griffin came in and then Duran came in. They’re throwing the ball great. Shutouts are always fun. Shutouts are fun, especially when you’re on the winning side of them.”

Gray, who was originally scheduled to make a second rehab start on Saturday, only allowed two singles and five of his seven strikeouts were called. At one point, he struck out four of five hitters looking.

James Kaprielian (0-2) surrendered one run on three hits and two walks in 5 2/3 innings. He struck out seven, recovering from a tough first start to the season when he gave up four runs in two innings against Cleveland. The right-hander said he made an in-game adjustment Saturday moving his hands up.

“Just kind of felt more comfortable timing-wise, more on top of the baseball, quicker to the plate and then stuff started to play up a little bit because of it,” Kaprielian said. “But I just think getting my feet under me a little bit and getting my comfort level back.”

Kaprielian, who was making his second start of the season after recovering from an inflamed right AC joint, retired seven of eight before Polanco’s two-out homer in the sixth on his final pitch.

Polanco’s third homer of the season was a towering shot to the suites above the batter’s eye in center field and traveled an estimated 451 feet. Polanco had three of Minnesota’s five hits.

LAUREANO TO RETURN

Kotsay said OF Ramón Laureano was traveling to Minnesota on Saturday to join the team. Laureano is eligible to return Sunday from his 80-game suspension for testing positive for a banned drug in 2021.

Laureano played 10 games with Triple-A Las Vegas this season, hitting .135.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Athletics: Kotsay said OF Stephen Piscotty will be going on the injured list after an MRI showed a Grade 1 calf strain. He was replaced after running the bases in the second inning on Friday.

Twins: OF Trevor Larnach was scratched from the lineup before the game with lower-body tightness. … SS Carlos Correa was out of the lineup for a second straight game as he deals with a bruised finger from being hit in the hand by a pitch. Correa is considered day to day.

UP NEXT

After having his start pushed back a day, RHP Chris Paddack (1-2, 3.15 ERA) is scheduled to pitch for Minnesota, with Oakland countering with RHP Daulton Jefferies (1-4, 4.81). Paddack earned his first win for the Twins in his last start with one run allowed in 5 1/3 innings at Baltimore. Jefferies has received one run of support or fewer in each of his five starts this season, losing the past four. He gave up six earned runs in five innings against Tampa Bay in his last start.

___

More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Bump & Stacy Show

AP

Belgium's Wout Van Aert, wearing the overall leader's yellow jersey speak with Netherlands' Fabio J...
Associated Press

Van Aert wins Tour stage 4 in style and extends overall lead

CALAIS, France (AP) — Belgian rider Wout van Aert won the hilly fourth stage of the Tour de France and extended his overall lead after attacking strongly on the day’s final climb on Tuesday. The Belgian rider kept the leader’s yellow jersey for the Jumbo-Visma team after taking it for the first time on Saturday. […]
1 day ago
Australia's Nick Kyrgios prepares to serve to Brandon Nakashima of the US in a men's singles fourth...
Associated Press

Wimbledon quarterfinalist Kyrgios due in court in Australia

WIMBLEDON, England (AP) — Wimbledon quarterfinalist Nick Kyrgios is due in court back home in Australia next month, and a lawyer representing him said Tuesday the “precise nature of” the allegations “is neither certain at this moment nor confirmed by either the prosecution or” the 27-year-old professional tennis player. “While Mr. Kyrgios is committed to […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Review: ‘Bull Durham’ fans, rejoice at ‘Church of Baseball’

“The Church of Baseball: The Making of ‘Bull Durham’: Home Runs, Bad Calls, Crazy Fights, Big Swings and a Hit” by Ron Shelton (Knopf) Former minor-league ballplayer Ron Shelton has written and directed a host of sports-themed movies, but it’s doubtful anyone has told him they’ve named their children after the characters in “Tin Cup” […]
1 day ago
Germany's Tatjana Maria celebrates defeating Germany's Jule Niemeier in a women's singles quarterfi...
Associated Press

At 34, Maria reaches Wimbledon semifinals for 1st time

WIMBLEDON, England (AP) — The first semifinalist at this year’s Wimbledon is the oldest woman remaining in the draw. Tatjana Maria, a 34-year-old German who returned to the tour less than a year ago following the birth of her second daughter, advanced to the semifinals at a Grand Slam tournament for the first time in […]
1 day ago
Germany's Tatjana Maria plays a return to Germany's Jule Niemeier in a women's singles quarterfinal...
Associated Press

Wimbledon updates | Maria reaches 1st GS semifinal at age 34

WIMBLEDON, England (AP) — The Latest from Wimbledon (all times local): ___ 3:30 p.m. Tatjana Maria advanced to the Wimbledon semifinals — the 34-year-old German’s first final four at any Grand Slam tournament — by beating Jule Niemeier 4-6, 6-2, 7-5. Maria will face either third-seeded Ons Jabeur or unseeded Marie Bouzkova for a place […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Wimbledon’s all-white clothing bothers some, delights others

WIMBLEDON, England (AP) — Before being interviewed on Centre Court about his return to the Wimbledon quarterfinals, Nick Kyrgios traded in his all-white grass-court shoes for a red-and-white pair of basketball sneakers, and swapped out his white hat for a red one. Big deal? Not to Kyrgios. Not to many, probably. Still, sure seemed to […]
1 day ago
Polanco HR gives Twins 1-0 win; A’s lose 8th straight