ST. LOUIS (AP) — Josh Donaldson, Nelson Cruz and Miguel Sanó all homered, leading the Minnesota Twins to a 7-3 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in the first game of a doubleheader Tuesday afternoon.
Jose Berríos (4-3) pitched into the sixth before being lifted to earn the win. He gave up three runs on four hits and struck out eight.
“I felt sharp,” Berríos said. “I was pitching on the black today. I had good command. I could throw all the pitches for strikes.”
Twins catcher Willians Astudillo, who got two hits and scored twice, liked what he was from Berríos.
“He was throwing very consistent today with all his pitches,” Astudillo said. “It was good to see. He was good in the bullpen before the game and it carried over into the first inning. It set the tone for us in the game.”
Donaldson hit a three-run drive into the left field bullpen to give the Twin a 3-0 lead in the third. He snapped an 0-for-8 rut with his third home run this season.
Carlos Martinez (0-2), who had missed more than a month while dealing with the coronavirus, was chased in the fourth.
“A lot of symptoms, with fever and cough and pain,” he said. “Pretty dizzy and sometimes I can’t breathe,” he said.
“I was like three times, four times at the hospital, like really sick,” he said, adding he now felt strong.
It was just the second start of the season, both coming against Minnesota, for Martinez. He had not pitched since July 28 when the Twins roughed him up for seven hits and six runs in 3 1/3 innings.
Minnesota made it 5-0 when Cruz led off the fifth a home run, his 14th this season. Cruz was in the lineup for the opener after sitting out a second straight day Monday with hip soreness.
Tommy Edman hit a two-run homer in the sixth for St. Louis. After Paul Goldschmidt singled, Matt Wisler relieved. Goldschmidt scored on a wild pitch after a passed ball and a ground out to cut the lead to 5-3.
The Twins got both runs back in the seventh when Sanó, who was not in the lineup Monday with mild hamstring soreness, hit a two-run homer off Ryan Helsley.
Minnesota has won seven of its last eight games.
“We’re playing well as a team right now,” Berríos said. “We’re winning games. We need to keep going out there and compete.”
The two-game series between Minnesota and St. Louis was condensed to one day so the Cardinals could have one more day off before the end of the season, with a backlog of makeup games this month.
Behind second base, a large No. 20 was placed touching the grass to honor Hall of Fame outfielder Lou Brock, who died on Sunday at the age of 81. The six-time All-Star used his speed and bat to help the Cardinals win three NL pennants and two World Series championships.
In a statement the Cardinals released Tuesday, Lou Brock Jr. thanked all the fans for rooting for his dad.
“Everyone says St. Louis is a baseball town, and my father absolutely was a baseball guy. What is so amazing to me is how St. Louis’ love for baseball has been honored with the likes of Jack Buck, Bob Gibson, Stan Musial, and all the wonderful guys. To know my dad’s name honors the city, as well as MLB, is a gift,” his son said.
Twins: RHP Sean Poppen was added as the 29th man.
Cardinals: The Cardinals optioned 21-year-old rookie OF Dylan Carlson to the alternate training site. The club activated Martinez, recalled right-handed pitcher Daniel Ponce De Leon as the 29th man and designated right-handed pitcher Ryan Meisinger for assignment. The highly touted Carlson was hitting .162 with one home run and five RBIs since the club brought him to the majors Aug. 15.
Twins: RHP Jake Odorizzi (chest contusion) is set to pitch one more time at the Twins’ alternate training site in St. Paul, Minnesota. He remains on track to be back with the Twins in the middle of this month.
Cardinals: C Yadier Molina was back in the lineup for Game 1. Molina exited in the sixth inning in Monday’s 5-1 loss to the Cubs with a bruised left elbow.
Twins: RHP Randy Dobnak (6-2, 2.72 ERA) will start the second game, his turn coming up in a doubleheader for the third straight time. He is making his ninth start and appearance of the 2020 season.
Cardinals: RHP Daniel Ponce de Leon (0-2, 5.25) will start Game 2. He failed to get out of the first inning in his last outing as the Indians touched him for four runs and four walks.
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