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It was the first time Jose Berrios had pitched more than seven innings since June 28, a key development for the Twins as he attempts to put a disastrous August behind him.
The Twins not only get back a player they can use all over the field, they get one who is batting .263 with 15 home runs and 43 RBI.
Kyle Gibson's return from the injured list didn't go well in a 12-6 loss, and the Twins now have a 3 1/2-game lead over Cleveland with 16 games remaining in the regular season.
Jorge Polanco did not start after undergoing emergency dental surgery on Thursday. He did pinch hit in the eighth inning, and struck out as the potential tying run.
With a half-dozen key players out of the lineup, the Twins went hitless with runners in scoring position and fell behind early in a 6-2 loss to Washington on a dreary night at Target Field.
Thursday will be Kyle Gibson's first start since Aug. 30 in Detroit, when he gave up four runs over five innings on 10 hits.
Mitch Garver belted home runs in the first and seventh innings as the Twins rallied to beat the Indians 5-3 while returning their lead to 6 1/2 games in the AL Central.
Major League Baseball on Saturday announced that Twins pitcher Michael Pineda has received a 60-day suspension for violating the league's drug policy.
Nelson Cruz's plan was to take some swings with his sore wrist before Saturday's game, then take his usual spot in the starting lineup. Manager Rocco Baldelli, however, had other ideas
The Indians scored four, two-out runs to take the victory in the opening game of a weekend series at Target Field.