Ryan Doumit, Ben Revere drive Twins to series-opening win in Cincy
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CINCINNATI -- A pair of Twins had four hits apiece. The bullpen got one huge out after another. One friendly fan even offered manager Ron Gardenhire a hot dog during the game.
The Twins' first game at Great American Ball Park had a lot to like -- even without mustard and ketchup. Ryan Doumit and Ben Revere each had four hits Friday night in a 5-4 victory that gave the Cincinnati Reds their season-high fourth straight loss.
The teams played five straight seasons from 1997 to 2001, but hadn't met since then. The Twins were braced for a wild first game at Great American Ball Park, which opened in 2003.
They got it.
''Fun ballgame,'' Gardenhire said. ''First time we've been here. Very exciting atmosphere, except for the guy wanting to feed me a hot dog. That wasn't great.
''He just came down in the stands, trying to hand me a hot dog. I think he thinks I'm too big. It was a nice gesture. Wished I could have taken it.''
Instead, they took the opener of the interleague series.
Doumit hit a solo shot off Homer Bailey (5-5), who angrily left the field after failing to get through the sixth inning. Revere broke an 0-for-15 slump with four singles.
Chris Heisey and Scott Rolen had two-run homers off Twins starter Nick Blackburn (4-4), who lasted only five innings.
Revere, who grew up in neighboring Kentucky and had more than two dozen friends and family in the stands, also stole two bases, scored a run and had a sacrifice fly off Bill Bray that made it 5-4 in the sixth. It was his second career four-hit game.
After a rough series in Pittsburgh, Revere was glad for the change in venue.
''I had a pretty big cheering section tonight,'' he said. ''I was just glad to get out of Pittsburgh (where) I'd hit it pretty hard up the middle and they'd snag it.''
Minnesota's biggest concern was whether its starters would get rocked in a ballpark where homers are the norm. There's been at least one hit in each of the last 60 games, the longest current streak in the majors. The Twins' pitching staff has allowed a major league-leading 95 homers -- 68 by the starters.
Eight pitches into the game, Blackburn gave up a two-run shot to Heisey. Blackburn has allowed at least one first-inning run in eight of his 11 starts. But the bullpen made the lead stand up.
Doumit's first homer since May 8 put the Twins up 3-2 in the fourth inning. Rolen, playing his fourth game since returning from a stint on the disabled list with a bum shoulder, hit his first homer since April 26, putting the Reds back ahead 4-3 in the fourth.
Alex Burnett escaped a bases-loaded, one-out threat in the sixth. Glen Perkins gave up a pair of singles in the ninth, but escaped with a pair of strikeouts for his second save in place of Matt Capps, sidelined since June 15 by a sore shoulder.
''I made the pitches when I had to,'' Perkins said. ''Sometimes you win ugly.''
• Twins C Joe Mauer caught in the bullpen without a problem and pinch hit in the sixth, drawing a walk. He was replaced by a pinch runner. Mauer has been out of the lineup the last four games with a bruised right thigh.
• 3: Plate umpire Jerry Layne left in the fourth after the barrel of a broken bat hit him on the left side of the head. The 23-year veteran fell on his back, got to his feet with help and went for tests at a hospital that came back normal. "I heard the sound when it hit his mask," said Doumit, who was catching. "It was awfully loud. That's scary."
• 4: Hits for Doumit, tying a career high.
• Saturday: @ Cincinnati, 3:10 p.m. Twins LHP Brian Duensing (1-2, 3.12 earned-run average) vs. Reds RHP Johnny Cueto (8-3, 2.38).
• Sunday: @ Cincinnati, 12:10 pm. Twins LHP Scott Diamond (5-3, 2.57) vs. Reds RHP Mike Leake (2-5, 4.70).
• Monday: vs. Chicago White Sox, 7:10 p.m. Twins LHP Francisco Liriano (1-7, 5.74) vs. TBD.