Game over: Twins 5, Red Sox 2
Twins closer Joe Nathan retires the Red Sox in the ninth. The game was played in 3:08 before 40,491 at Target Field.
Bottom 8th: Twins 5, Red Sox 2
Twins broke it open. An RBI double by Jim Thome off Jon Lester did the trick. Alfredo Aceves relieved Lester after 7-1/3 innings and allowed an RBI double to Danny Valencia scoring the fourth Twins run.
Mike Aviles looked like he misplayed Trevor Plouffe's single that went over is head in right to load the bases. Wonder where Darnell McDonald was? Nishioka singled up the middle to score the fifth run, but Ellsbury threw out the second runner trying to score with a nice throw to the plate.
That was all for Aceves.
Andrew Miller came on to pitch. He threw four balls to Denard Span to reload the bases, but he fanned Revere to end the long inning.
Lester threw 119 pitches and went 7-1/3 innings, allowed 8 hits and 4 runs.
Top 8th: Red Sox 2, Twins 2
David Ortiz goes yard, deep center, to tie it up, his 23rd on a 1-2 pitch from lefty Glen Perkins. Dustin Pedroia can't stand not playing so he pinch hits for the slumping Josh Reddick with Carl Crawford (single) on base. Pedroia grounded out to end the inning. Pedroia went in to play second base and Aviles moved from second base to rightfield.
Bottom 7th: Twins 2, Red Sox 1
Twins load them up with two outs, but Lester retires Ben Revere to keep the game close.
Top 7th: Twins 2, Red Sox 1
Nick Blackburn is finally out after allowing an RBI single to Marco Scutaro with two outs in the seventh. Blackburn secured the first two outs before Aviles walked and advanced to second when Jacoby Ellsbury reached on an error by second baseman Trevor Plouffe. Scutaro followed with the RBI single.
Lefty Glen Perkins came on to relieve Blackburn.
He battled Adrian Gonzalez, but got the Sox slugger to fly out to right to end the inning.
Bottom 6th: Twins 2, Red Sox 0
Joe Mauer knocked in Ben Revere with a double to the left field corner that was caught by a fan. Umpire Tim McClelland ruled that because the fan interfered the speedy Revere would have scored. If the ball had kicked into the stands it would have been a ground rule double and Revere would have had to stay at third. Good call. Terry Francona argued to no avail.
Top 5th: Twins 1, Red Sox 0
Mike Aviles has two hits in place of Dustin Pedroia, but Sox can't seem to do much of anything against Blackburn. They are hitting the ball harder, so it may be a matter of time.
Top 4th: Twins 1, Red Sox 0
Red Sox squandered a chance to break into the scoring column with two on (Youkilis and Ortiz singles) and one out. But Crawford and Saltalamacchia couldn't get it done.
Bottom 3rd: Twins 1, Red Sox 0
Lester has settled down as he normally does. A 1-2-3 Third inning. Sox tring to muster something against Blackburn.
Top 2nd: Twins 1, Red Sox 0
Nick Blackburn looking tough. Two K's that inning. Freezes Jarrod Saltalamacchia for strike three.
Bottom 1st: Twins 1, Red Sox 0
Jon Lester has had some difficult first innings this season. This one didn't hurt too badly. Jim Thome knocked in the run with a single to center after Ben Revere's one-out single Joe Mauer's walk and Michael Cuddyer's single.
Lester helped himself by picking Revere off, tagged out at second base.
Top 1st: Red Sox 0, Twins 0
Jacoby Ellsbury beats out an infield hit, but Sox don't do much beyond that off Nick Blackburn. Jon Lester about to take the hill for the first time tonight.
Sox go for the sweep tonight before their off-day in Seattle. As per his promise to rest his infielder's this week, Terry Francona gives Dustin Pedroia gets the night off with Mike Aviles starting at second base.
Marco Scutaro is at shortstop batting second and Jed Lowrie sits it out.
Game started at 7:11. The temp is 79 degrees.