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Twins, Willingham Edge Pirates 2-1

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The Twins defeated Pittsburgh 2-1 Wednesday night.  Josh Willingham hit a solo homerun in the 8th inning to break a 1-all tie for the Twins.  Francisco Liriano made his longest start of the season throwing 6 2/3 innings with 4 hits and 1 earned run allowed.  He didn’t figure in the final decision.  Jared Burton threw 1 1/3 innings of scoreless relief to get the win.  Glen Perkins threw a scoreless 9th inning to earn his 1st save of the season.  Trevor Plouffe had a RBI single for the Twins in the first inning.

The Twins played without closer Matt Capps (right shoulder inflammation) and catcher Joe Mauer (bruised right quadricep).  Capps could be back as early as tonight and it now appears that Mauer will miss tonight’s game.

The Twins play the final game of the 3-game series at Pittsburgh at 6:05, pregame on WJON at 5:35.  Righthander Liam Hendriks (0-3) gets the start on the mound for the Twins and righthander James McDonald (5-3) toes the rubber for the Pirates.  The Twins are 8 1/2 games back of Cleveland for first place in the American League Central.

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