Berrios stellar as Twins blank Blue Jays for second straight game

Twins 3 Blue Jays 0

TORONTO — Mitch Garver homered to back a solid start from Jose Berrios and the Minnesota Twins blanked Toronto 3-0 on Tuesday to hand the reeling Blue Jays their fourth straight loss.

Marwin Gonzalez earned an RBI on a walk for the Twins (22-12), who have won eight of their last 11 games.

Berrios (6-1) lowered his earned-run average from 2.91 to 2.53 with seven shutout innings. He allowed just four hits and struck out five.

Relievers Trevor Hildenberger, Trevor May and Taylor Rogers preserved the shutout.

Toronto (15-21) lost for the seventh time in eight games, including back-to-back shutouts by the Twins to open a six-game homestand.

Aaron Sanchez (3-3) allowed three runs and six hits over seven innings. He also walked three batters and struck out six in a 99-pitch outing.

The game began poorly for Sanchez, who walked Gonzalez with the bases loaded to give Minnesota a 1-0 lead in the first inning. Sanchez needed 31 pitches to get out the frame, allowing a pair of hits and two walks.

The 26-year-old right-hander seemed to settle in after the troublesome opening inning, giving up only three more hits until Garver launched a two-run homer off him to put the Twins up 3-0 in the sixth. The home run was Garver’s seventh of the season.

Sanchez had called out his Blue Jays teammates — specifically their defensive sloppiness — after his last start on May 2 in Anaheim. Toronto manager Charlie Montoyo said before Tuesday’s game that Sanchez’s comments were said in the heat of the moment and the team had moved past it.

The Blue Jays held a hitters meeting before the game, which usually only happens prior to the first game of a series, but it seemed to do little to spark their stagnant offence. Toronto had six hits and managed just one extra-base hit — a double from Billy McKinney in the seventh.

Top prospect Vladimir Guerrero Jr. snapped a three-game hitless streak with a single in the ninth.

Minnesota entered Tuesday with the second-best win percentage in the majors at .636, behind only the Tampa Bay Rays.

NOTES: Attendance was 14,039. … The two teams cap their three-game series Wednesday night. Right-hander Trent Thornton (0-3) starts for Toronto while the Twins counter with righty Kyle Gibson (2-1).

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