Twins' Maeda outduels Bieber to capture Friday night win

Kenta Maeda
Photo credit Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports

Pitching came to life on rainy Friday night inside Target Field as the Minnesota Twins and Cleveland Indians squared off.

The Twins sent Kenta Maeada outdueled Cleveland's Shane Bieber, the overwhelming American League Cy Young Award favorite, tossing seven shutout innings as the Twins beat Cleveland 3-1.

7 & 7 for King Kenta.--------------#TwinsWin | #MNTwins pic.twitter.com/wYQEmunrx9

— Minnesota Twins (@Twins) September 12, 2020

Twins outfielder Byron Buxton put the Twins ahead 2-0 in the bottom half of the second with a two-run home run. Ryan Jeffers' 436 foot solo homer run in the bottom of the seventh added to the Twins lead. Cleveland did put a run on the board in the top of ninth when Jose Ramirez connected for his tenth home run of the year.

Don’t miss your pitch, Buck!(#MNTwins x @Geico) pic.twitter.com/VaH0kWixu6

— Minnesota Twins (@Twins) September 12, 2020

Despite a damp night inside Target Field, tempers flared during the eighth inning between Twins reliever Sergio Romo threw a 1-1 pitch to Francisco Lindor.

Lindor hit a fly ball to end the inning, but when the ball left the bat, Romo walked off the mound toward the home dugout and Lindor smiled at Romo as he went down the first base line. A yelling match began between the two as they walked toward one another, causing the benches to clear. Both players were separated and the game resumed after both bullpens emptied.

The win keeps Minnesota one game behind the Chicago White Sox in the American League Central. Cleveland is 2 1/2 games out of first place.