Sports

Astros outlast Twins 13-12 after nearly blowing 8-run lead in 9th inning

MINNEAPOLIS — Alex Bregman had a three-run homer and the Houston Astros held off the Minnesota Twins 13-12 on Friday night after taking an eight-run lead into the bottom of the ninth.

Jeremy Peña had three hits, scored three times and drove in three runs to help the Astros win for the 13th time in 5 games. They are a major league-best 21-9 since June 1.

Down 13-5 after Houston scored three times in the ninth, the Twins fell just short with a seven-run outburst. Josh Hader came on with two outs and gave up a grand slam to Carlos Correa before striking out Manuel Margot for his 15th save.

Twins designated hitter Jose Miranda went 4 for 4, setting a team record with 10 straight hits. Hall of Famer Tony Oliva set the previous record in 1967 and it was matched by Mickey Hatcher in 1985 and Todd Walker in 1998.

The Twins pinch hit for Miranda in the ninth, so his streak remains active at 10.

Astros starter Shawn Dubin gave up three earned runs over 2 2/3 innings. It was Dubin’s second start after 14 relief appearances as the Astros – who have five starting pitchers on the IL – hope Dubin can stretch out and become a full-fledged member of the starting rotation.

Six relievers combined to finish out the game, with Bryan King (1-0) picking up his first career victory.

Twins starter Pablo López (8-7) gave up six earned runs in five-plus innings, pushing his ERA to 5.18.

Houston strung together four singles to score three runs in the top of the second, but the Twins got two back and almost more in the bottom of the frame. With two outs and a run in, Dubin walked Willi Castro to make it 3-2.

He then fell behind Correa 3-0, but after taking a strike, Correa lofted a flyball into short right field. Jose Altuve – Correa’s former teammate – sprinted across the outfield grass and made a sliding catch, saving at least two runs.

Miranda hit a solo homer in the third inning, tying it and extending the Twins’ record to 23 straight games with a home run.

In the fifth, Miranda’s RBI double off King gave the Twins their first lead. But it didn’t last long. The Astros knocked López out of the game with three straight hits leading off the sixth. Peña’s second RBI single of the game tied the score, and Joey Loperfido’s looping double down the right field line off reliever Jorge Alcala gave Houston a 6-4 lead.

Houston tacked on four runs off reliever Josh Winder over the next two innings and added three more on Bregman’s homer off Kody Funderburk in the ninth.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Altuve left the game in the top of the eighth after he was hit on the wrist by a pitch from Winder.

UP NEXT

Houston RHP Hunter Brown (6-5, 4.07 ERA) was set to race RHP Joe Ryan (5-5, 3.21) on Saturday.

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More AP baseball: https://apnews.com/MLB

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