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Ryan's arm, Kepler's bat lead Twins past Tigers 5-0

Ryan Jeffers homered, doubled and drove in three runs for the Twins, who won their sixth game in a row.
Credit: AP
Minnesota Twins pitcher Joe Ryan throws against the Detroit Tigers during the first inning of a baseball game, Wednesday, April 27, 2022, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Craig Lassig)

MINNEAPOLIS — Joe Ryan threw seven innings of one-hit ball and Max Kepler stayed hot with a pair of home runs as the streaking Minnesota Twins defeated the Detroit Tigers 5-0 on Wednesday night.

Ryan Jeffers homered, doubled and drove in three runs for the Twins, who won their sixth game in a row.

Michael Pineda (1-1) took the loss for Detroit. He gave up four runs, including all three Twins homers, in five innings against his former team.

Ryan (3-1) was dominant from the start, holding the Tigers hitless until Miguel Cabrera laced a single in the fourth. The right-hander walked just one batter and struck out nine, two shy of his career high. He extended his scoreless streak to 17 2/3 innings and lowered his ERA to 1.17.

Kepler, who homered and doubled Tuesday, started the scoring when he led off the second inning by driving Pineda's fastball 401 feet to the opposite field in left-center.

Kepler struck again with two outs in the fourth. This time, Pineda threw a fastball down and in, and Kepler turned on it. The ball hit the facing of the second deck in right-center, 423 feet away.

Minnesota took a 4-0 lead in the fifth when Trevor Larnach led off with a double and Jeffers followed with a line-drive home run to left.

Larnach led off the seventh with his second double of the night and Jeffers drove him in with another double to make it 5-0.

Joe Smith and Danny Coulombe each pitched an inning of relief to finish the two-hitter for Minnesota.

Pineda spent the last three seasons in Minnesota, winning 22 games in 53 starts. He signed a one-year deal with the Tigers in March and joined the Detroit rotation with five shutout innings against the Yankees in his 2022 debut on April 21.

Ryan, who pitched for Team USA in the Tokyo Olympics last summer, made five starts for the Twins in September, going 2-1 with a 4.05 ERA. This year, he became the second rookie in Twins history to start on opening day.

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