September 13, 2019 / 4:36 AM / 9 days ago

Rendon, Soto power Nationals past Twins

EditorsNote: Minor fixes

Sep 11, 2019; Minneapolis, MN, USA; Washington Nationals relief pitcher Fernando Rodney (56) pitches in the eighth inning against Minnesota Twins at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Anthony Rendon and Juan Soto each homered and drove in three runs, and Adam Eaton and Yan Gomes also hit home runs to lead the Washington Nationals to a 12-6 victory over the Minnesota Twins in the rubber match of their three-game series Thursday night at Minneapolis.

Rendon also doubled, walked twice and scored two runs, and Asdrubal Cabrera tripled and drove in two runs for Washington (81-64), which extended its lead for the first wild card in the National League to 3 1/2 games over the Chicago Cubs and Milwaukee Brewers.

Patrick Corbin (12-7) picked up the win, allowing three runs on nine hits over six innings.

Jonathan Schoop homered among his three hits, and Nelson Cruz went 2-for-5 with a home run and two RBIs for Minnesota (89-57), which saw its American League Central Division lead shrink to 3 1/2 games over the Cleveland Indians. The Twins open a three-game series with the Indians on Friday night in Cleveland.

Kyle Gibson (13-7) took the loss, allowing six runs (five earned) on eight hits over 4 2/3 innings. He walked four and struck out five.

Washington took a 1-0 lead in the first inning on Rendon’s 33rd homer of the season into the bleachers in left-center.

Minnesota tied it in the bottom of the first on an RBI single by Eddie Rosario, driving in Luis Arraez, who had doubled.

The Nationals took a 3-1 lead in the third on a bases-loaded fielder’s choice by Soto and an RBI single by Cabrera. The Twins cut it to 3-2 in the bottom half of the inning on Cruz’s 36th homer of the season, a 460-foot drive that landed in the restaurant above the batter’s eye in center field.

Eaton hit his 14th homer of the season, and Cabrera added an RBI triple to highlight a three-run fifth to increase Washington’s lead to 6-2. An RBI single by Cruz cut it to 6-3, but the Nationals answered with four runs in the sixth on a two-run double by Rendon and a two-run homer by Soto, his 34th, off reliever Kohl Stewart.

Minnesota cut it to 10-6 in the eighth on a two-run homer by Schoop and an RBI single by LaMonte Wade Jr., and had the bases loaded with one out. But Fernando Rodney then struck out Cruz and Jorge Polanco to get out of the jam.

Gomes hit a two-run homer in the ninth to end the scoring.

—Field Level Media

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