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Updated: May 7th, 2012 10:12pm
Not quite a no-no, but Jered Weaver quiets Twins offense yet again

Not quite a no-no, but Jered Weaver quiets Twins offense yet again

by Phil Mackey
1500ESPN.com
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MINNEAPOLIS -- Another shaky outing by Francisco Liriano and another punchless effort by the Minnesota Twins offense against Jered Weaver helped seal an 8-3 loss to the Los Angeles Angels on Monday night.

The skinny

It wasn't quite as impressive as the no-hitter, but Weaver's second start against the Twins in less than a week was very effective.

Weaver allowed one earned run on three hits and two walks while striking out two in six innings.

The Twins had chances, but failed to come up with big hits with runners in scoring position.

Still carrying an 11-inning hitless streak against the Twins into the bottom of the third, Weaver walked Plouffe, then got into a 10-pitch battle with Erik Komatsu who eventually laced a single up the middle.

After a standing ovation for Kamatsu quieted down, the next batter, Jamey Carroll, lined into a 4-6 double play to help kill the rally.

The Angels jumped in front 1-0 in the top of the first inning on an RBI groundout by Albert Pujols. Alberto Callaspo's two-run homer in the third made it 3-0, and Peter Bourjos' sac fly plated the Angels' fourth run in the fourth inning.

Pujols added an RBI single in the seventh off Anthony Swarzak, and Callaspo added an RBI single in the ninth off Glen Perkins. A dropped fly ball by Kamatsu on a fly ball hit by Mark Trumbo led to two more runs in the ninth as well.

Liriano allowed four earned runs on five hits and three walks while striking out four in five innings. He has yet to allow fewer than four earned runs in any of his six starts this season.

"Frankie just misfired," Gardenhire said. "You throw 80-plus pitches in four innings. His best inning was his fifth inning when ended up close to 90, but that was basically his best inning. He just misfired. He wasn't in the strike zone enough. Too many long innings out there."

Brian Dozier singled up the middle in the eighth inning for the first hit of his major league career. Shortly after, Joe Mauer snapped an 0-for-12 streak with an RBI single to cut the Angels lead to 5-2. Dozier came home on a sac fly by Ryan Doumit to temporarily make it 5-3.

Turning point

Trailing 4-0, the Twins blew a golden chance to post a crooked number in the bottom of the fifth inning.

Chris Parmelee singled off Weaver to start the frame, then Trevor Plouffe walked and Kamatsu singled to load the bases with nobody out.

But Weaver retired Jamey Carroll on a flare to second baseman Howie Kendrick, then got Denard Span to bounce into a fielder's choice for the second out.

One run scored on Span's groundout, but that was all the damage the Twins could inflict, as Dozier bounced out to end the threat.

"We put some people out there," Gardenhire said. "As we talked about, we need to string together three or four hits. They made some plays on us. We lined out a few times. But there were definitely better at-bats against (Weaver) and made him work a little bit harder, but he found a way to get out of a couple jams and that's what these guys that win all these games are all about. They find a way when they may not have their best stuff."

Numbers game

261: Days since Liriano's last quality start (Aug. 20 against the Yankees).

72-28: The margin the Twins have been outscored by in innings 1-3 this season.

1: Failed pickoff attempt in the ninth inning. Left-hander Perkins had Peter Bourjos leaning toward second, but first baseman Chris Parmelee was fooled by the pickoff move and got caught looking in toward home plate. The ball bounced off Parmelee's glove and into foul territory allowing Bourjos to advance to second.

Health report

• Twins right-handed pitching prospect Alex Wimmers is rehabbing his partially torn elbow ligament in Fort Myers. The Twins and Wimmers are hoping to avoid Tommy John surgery.

Josh Willingham came down with a flu bug. His availability for Monday's game was in question during batting practice.

Alexi Casilla is suffering from a sore shoulder following a dive in Sunday's game. Jamey Carroll started in his place at second base.

Overheard

"I got a chance to meet him before the game. Valencia called me over there because he's friends with him. So we talked before the game and he gave me some advice. He was telling me it is the same game, just keep doing what you were doing. Once I got on first he said 'Congratulations. Looked good up there. It's the first of many.' It was good to hear that."
-- Dozier, who was greeted by Pujols at first base after his first career base hit.

On deck

• Tuesday: vs. Angels, 7:10 p.m. LHP Scott Diamond (0-0, 0.00) vs. RHP Dan Haren (1-2, 3.43)
• Wednesday vs. Angels, 7:10 p.m. RHP Carl Pavano (2-2, 4.62) vs. RHP Ervin Santana (0-6, 5.59)

Phil Mackey is a columnist for 1500ESPN.com. He co-hosts "Mackey & Judd" from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. weekdays on 1500 ESPN Twin Cities.
Email Phil | @PhilMackey | Mackey & Judd
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