One phrase kept coming out of Lew Ford's mouth as he watched Justin Morneau's home run ball slam off the folded seats over the big baggie in right field.
"Thank you, Justin," Ford said. "Thank you, thank you, thank you. You're the man . . . I think I was happiest guy in the building."
Morneau capped a wild game with his third walk-off homer of the season to lift the Minnesota Twins to a 10-9 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers yesterday.
The blast by the reigning American League MVP bailed out Ford, whose two fielding miscues in the top of the inning allowed Milwaukee to tie the game off closer Joe Nathan (3-1).
Filling in for the injured Torii Hunter, who was hit by a pitch on the left hand in the first inning, Ford had a career-high four RBIs but nearly cost the Twins the game in the ninth.
Ford lost a sky-high popup from Prince Fielder in the Metrodome's white roof, and the 262-pound Fielder rumbled around the bases for an inside-the-park homer to make the score 9-8.
Fielder said it was his first inside-the-park homer since Little League.
"I am a little quicker than people think," Fielder said with a smile.
Later in the inning, Ford double-clutched on a sacrifice fly from Craig Counsell and Bill Hall scored easily to tie the game and give Nathan his second blown save of the season.
But he got the win as a consolation prize after Morneau hit his 20th homer of the season, off Chris Spurling (1-1), to help the Twins avoid a sweep.
Tigers 7, Phillies 4 -- Justin Verlander lost his bid for another no-hitter early and watched Detroit come through late, scoring five runs in the seventh to rally and beat host Philadelphia.
The Tigers used three pinch hitters in the seventh, including Gary Sheffield who hit for Verlander and knocked in a run off Geoff Geary (1-2) that cut it to 3-2.
Craig Monroe and Magglio Ordonez followed with consecutive two-RBI hits to complete the rally for a 6-3 lead.
Verlander (8-2) saw his bid for consecutive no-hitters spoiled with one out in the second. He gave up three runs and seven hits in six innings with six strikeouts and two walks.
Indians 5, Braves 2 -- Fausto Carmona (8-2) pitched seven innings plus to help host Cleveland avoid a three-game sweep.
Casey Blake extended the majors' longest hitting streak of the season to 26 games as Cleveland won for only the third time in eight games.
Angels 10, Dodgers 4 -- Howie Kendrick and Orlando Cabrera had three hits each and drove in a combined three runs, helping the visitors clinch the second Freeway Series of the season.
Kelvim Escobar (8-3) allowed three runs and eight hits in seven innings.
Rangers 11, Reds 4 -- Kevin Millwood got his first victory in two months, and Marlon Byrd hit his first homer in nearly a year and drove in three runs for visiting Texas.
Bronson Arroyo (2-8) matched his career high by losing his sixth straight decision. He allowed seven runs and eight hits in six innings.
Devil Rays 7, Rockies 4 -- Jonny Gomes hit a pair of two-run homers, Carlos Pena hit a solo shot into the third deck at Coors Field and Tampa Bay avoided a sweep.
Scott Kazmir (5-3) went six innings, giving up three runs and six hits.
Cardinals 10, Athletics 6 -- Ryan Ludwick hit a go-ahead, three-run homer in the seventh inning and drove in a career-high five runs, leading visiting St. Louis to its first interleague series win in four tries this season.
Diamondbacks 6, Orioles 4 -- Chad Tracy singled home the go-ahead run in the eighth inning, and visiting Arizona capitalized on another poor performance by the Baltimore bullpen to extend the Orioles' losing streak to eight.
Pirates 8, White Sox 7 -- Nate McLouth had a career-high four RBIs and Jose Bautista homered and drove in two runs for host Pittsburgh.
Astros 10, Mariners 3 -- Mike Lamb hit a grand slam and drove in five runs and host Houston completed a three-game sweep.
Nationals 4, Blue Jays 2 -- Ryan Zimmerman homered for the second straight game for visiting Washington, which overcame Frank Thomas's record 244th homer as a designated hitter.
Royals 5, Marlins 4 -- Brian Bannister (4-3) won his fourth consecutive start, Esteban German drove in the go-ahead run, and host Kansas City improved to 8-4 in interleague play.
Padres 11, Cubs 3 -- Mike Cameron hit two homers and San Diego hit a season-high five to win the day's lone intraleague game, making a winner of Greg Maddux (6-3) at Chicago.