MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Gerrit Cole allowed one hit in seven innings, and the Houston Astros backed him with three homers in an 11-0 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Tuesday night.
Cole (2-4) gave up his only hit in the sixth inning while the Astros broke out offensively to win a meeting of division leaders and snap the Twins’ four-game winning streak.
After losing 1-0 in the series opener, Houston added to its franchise record for April homers on Tuesday. George Springer, Jake Marisnick and Alex Bregman went deep, giving the Astros 43 for the month.
Cole struck out 11 and walked three, including the first two batters of the game. It was his fourth game with double-figure strikeouts this season. Max Kepler had the only hit off Cole, a double off the right-field wall with one out in the sixth.
Relievers Josh James and Chris Devenski completed the three-hitter. Kepler had two hits for the Twins, who have hit 50 home runs in their first 27 games.
Springer had an RBI double in the third and homered on the first pitch of the fifth.
Marisnick and Bregman homered as part of a four-run sixth. Marisnick hit a two-run shot to chase Michael Pineda (2-2), who allowed five runs on a season-high nine hits in five-plus innings.
Twins: Pineda was hit in the leg by a line drive off the bat of Michael Brantley in the fifth inning but stayed in the game. … INF Miguel Sano (right heel laceration) went 0-for-1 with a walk Tuesday in his rehab assignment for Single-A Fort Myers.
Astros minor leaguer J.J. Matijevic was suspended 50 games Tuesday after a second positive test for a drug of abuse. Matijevic, a 2017 second-round pick, is batting .240 for Double-A Corpus Christi.
LHP Martin Perez (3-0, 4.44 ERA) will start for the Twins against RHP Collin McHugh (3-2, 4.78) in the third game of the four-game series. The teams will conclude their season series on Thursday. All seven games are in a span of 11 days.