Twins pound Athletics; Bumgarner shines |

Twins pound Athletics; Bumgarner shines

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) – Justin Morneau homered and had three hits and Rene Rivera hit his first home run in nearly five years, and the suddenly resurgent Minnesota Twins beat the Oakland Athletics 11-1 on Thursday.

Nick Blackburn (3-4) pitched seven solid innings for Minnesota, which has won three straight – all on the road – following a season-high nine-game losing streak.

Trevor Plouffe also homered while Michael Cuddyer added three hits for Minnesota. Plouffe homered as part of a six-run eighth inning, the Twins’ best of the season.

Hideki Matsui walked and scored for the A’s, who lost their starting pitcher Tyson Ross (3-3) to a strained left oblique after throwing just seven pitches.


LOS ANGELES (AP) – Madison Bumgarner came within an out of his first major league shutout and earned his first victory of the season, and Freddy Sanchez drove in two runs to help lead the San Francisco Giants over the Los Angeles Dodgers 3-1 on Thursday night.

Bumgarner (1-6) allowed a run and six hits, including a first-pitch RBI double with two outs in the ninth by rookie Jerry Sands. The 21-year-old left-hander struck out three and walked two in his ninth start of the season. Bumgarner has a 1.32 ERA over his last five outings.

The only other Giants starter to lose his first six decisions of a season since Terry Mullholland’s 0-6 start as a rookie in 1986 was Barry Zito, who began 2008 with an 0-8 record.