MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A slow start to his first big league season did little to reduce prized prospect Oswaldo Arcia’s confidence.
And when the powerful Venezuelan finally got a hold of one, sending a pitch soaring well past the seats in right field, he couldn’t help but stand and admire it before making his first trot around the bases.
Arcia hit his first career home run and Kevin Correia gave up two runs in seven innings, leading the Minnesota Twins over the Miami Marlins 4-3 Tuesday in the opener of a day-night doubleheader.
Arcia was just 1 for 9 with no homers and no RBIs in his first three games, but an incredulous look crossed his face when he was asked if he was concerned about how things were going before coming through against the Marlins.
“His hitting’s going to come,” Twins outfielder Wilkin Ramirez said, acting as Arcia’s interpreter. “He knows he’s a good hitter.”
Now Jose Fernandez knows, too.
Arcia’s three-run homer in the fourth backed Correia (2-1), who allowed five hits and struck out five. The Twins shrugged off yet another chilly day at Target Field to win their fifth straight. Brian Dozier had three hits, and Glen Perkins earned his sixth save.
“There was a big smile on his face and he was giving some hard high fives,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said of Arcia, who dominated Triple-A pitching early this season before being called up to help a short-handed Twins outfield.
Fernandez (0-2) gave up four runs and six hits for the Marlins, off to a franchise-worst 4-16 start after an offseason salary purge. Joe Mahoney had two hits and two RBIs for Miami.
“Obviously we need to score more runs,” Marlins manager Mike Redmond said. “It’s been the same story all season. We’re getting enough on the mound.”
The teams were supposed to open their series on Monday night, but the latest snowstorm put that one on ice. It was the third home game the Twins have had to postpone because of weather this year — there were just five in the first three seasons of Target Field.
Grounds crew members and ballpark personnel worked through the night to clear the heavy, wet snow from the field, seats and stairways.
The temperature at first pitch was 38 degrees, but the field, which has heater coils underneath it to combat cold temperatures, was lush and green.
Correia needed just 87 pitches to breeze through seven innings for his fourth straight time to open this season. He went at least seven innings just three times all last season for the Pirates.
“I think it’s harder to hit in (the cold weather) than pitch in it,” Correia said. “It’s kind of tough to get a feel on the baseball. I’ve thrown well in the cold. I wouldn’t call myself happy to be out there. I can’t wait for the 70-degree weather to come around.”
Miami took a 2-1 lead in the fourth on a single from Mahoney but Fernandez, initially was scheduled to start the second game, gave it all back in the bottom half.
Chris Parmelee and Trevor Plouffe started the inning with singles and Arcia stood and admired as his homer landed just short of the plaza beyond the right-field seats for a 4-2 lead.
“That’s the kind of way you have to answer,” Gardenhire said.
Miami had the bases loaded with one out in the eighth after Jared Burton hit Placido Polanco and Giancarlo Stanton with pitches. But the Marlins were only able to get one run across, on a groundout from Greg Dobbs.
Redmond got a nice ovation before the game. Redmond spent five years with the Twins as Joe Mauer’s backup catcher. The gregarious Redmond was a favorite in the clubhouse and is etched in Twins lore for his penchant for stripping down and walking around the clubhouse naked when things weren’t going well, his way of trying to insert levity.
“He just knows a lot about the game,” Mauer said. “And the way he related to younger players, especially myself, you kind of knew that he’d be really good at being a manager later on. It’s really exciting for me to see him over there, and it should be fun.”
NOTES: Stanton went 0 for 3, dropping his average to .176. He was hit by a pitch in the eighth inning, but remained in the game. … The run Burton allowed in the eighth was his first in nine appearances this year. … The Twins were sending RHP Mike Pelfrey (2-1, 7.30 ERA) to the mound for Game 2 to face Miami RHP Ricky Nolasco (0-2, 3.86).
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