Springs, Rays finally slow Twins hitters in 6-0 win

Bruce Kluckhohn-USA TODAY Sports
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MINNEAPOLIS — Jeffrey Springs threw two-hit ball into the sixth inning, Randy Arozarena stole two bases after twice getting hit by pitches and the Tampa Bay Rays beat the Minnesota Twins 6-0 Sunday.

Springs (3-2) continued his impressive transition to the starting rotation. He struck out five and walked two in 5 1/3 innings against a Twins team that had scored a combined 15 runs in winning the first two games of the series.

Arozarena was hit by a pair of pitches twice and visibly upset with Minnesota starter Cole Sands. Arozarena then stole two bases and added an RBI double.

Kevin Kiermaier hit a solo home run.

Sands (0-3) struggled again, giving up five runs in 4 2/3 innings. He’s surrendered 13 earned runs in 12 1/3 innings in his first three career starts.

The Twins had opened a six-game homestand by sending the New York Yankees’ Jameson Taillon, Nestor Cortes and Gerrit Cole each to season highs in runs allowed and then did the same Friday against Rays right-hander Drew Rasmussen.

Minnesota followed with five runs in 2 1/3 against Shane Baz, Tampa Bay’s top pitching prospect, on Saturday in his 2022 debut. The Twins scored 57 runs in their previous eight games.

Springs, making his eighth start this season, kept the Twins off-balance throughout. No runner even reached second base, but a walk to Carlos Correa with one out in the sixth ended Springs’ day with a career-high 94 pitches.

The left-hander is now 2-2 as a starter this season and has given up eight runs in 39 1/3 innings for a 1.85 ERA. Springs has made 108 relief appearances in his five-year career.

MAN OF HIS WORD

Tampa Bay outfielder Brett Phillips walked into the Rays clubhouse Sunday clean-shaven. He shaved after getting a hit Saturday to snap a stretch of 31 hitless at-bats.

Phillips told a reporter that he was a “man of my word,” and he hasn’t been clean-shaven since August 2019 when he was a minor leaguer with the Kansas City Royals.

NEW ARM

Veteran reliever Tyler Thornburg threw 2 1/3 scoreless innings in his Minnesota debut after having his contract selected on Sunday from Triple-A St. Paul. Thornburg, 33, had pitched in two games for St. Paul after pitching in nine games for the Atlanta Braves earlier this season with a 3.86 ERA.

Chi Chi Gonzalez was designated for release or assignment. He started Saturday’s game and allowed three runs in four innings.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Rays: SS Wander Franco (right quadriceps strain) will begin agility drills on Monday. Franco has been out since May 30. . 2B Brandon Lowe (stress reaction in low back) advanced to hitting flips from a coach. . RHP Luis Patino (left oblique strain) threw two innings and 29 pitches for Tampa Bay’s team in the Florida Complex League on Saturday. His rehab assignment will now move to Triple-A Durham.

Twins: Nick Gordon was checked by medical staff before the game after leaving Saturday’s game with a hamstring injury. Gordon entered the game as a defensive replacement in the eighth.

UP NEXT

Rays: The nine-game road trip continues Tuesday in New York with RHP Corey Kluber (3-2. 3.88 ERA) scheduled to pitch against the Yankees. Kluber allowed one run in six innings against New York on May 28. The Yankees are scheduled to start RHP Gerrit Cole (5-1, 3.63).

Twins: RHP Chris Archer (1-2, 3.65) will start the first of three games in Seattle on Monday. The Mariners have RHP Chris Flexen (2-7, 4.35) lined up to start. Archer earned his first Twins win in his last start with five innings and one run allowed against the Yankees.

Mariners sign RHP reliever Trevor Gott to 1-year contract

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Michael McLoone/USA TODAY Sports
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SEATTLE — The Seattle Mariners have begun the process of bolstering their bullpen by signing right-hander Trevor Gott to a one-year contract on Wednesday.

Gott appeared in 45 games last season with Milwaukee, going 3-4 with a 4.14 ERA. Gott had 44 strikeouts in 45 2/3 innings and held opponents to a .204 batting average.

Gott’s signing helps fill a void created when Erik Swanson was traded to Toronto as part of the deal that brought slugger Teoscar Hernandez to Seattle earlier this month. Gott has also pitched for San Francisco, Washington and the Los Angeles Angels.

Last season with the Brewers, Gott saw significant drops in batting average against and walk percentage, while raising his strikeout percentage.

Seattle also made a front office announcement Wednesday with the promotion of Andy McKay to assistant general manager. McKay has been with the club since 2015, when he was hired as the director of player development. McKay was promoted to senior director of baseball development in November 2021.

In his new role, McKay will oversee baseball development at all levels of the organization.