Brad Radke pitched seven strong innings to tie a team record with his 12th straight victory as the Minnesota Twins, behind a pinch-hit grand slam by Greg Colbrunn, beat the Toronto Blue Jays 9-3 Monday night in Minneapolis.
Radke tied the Twins’ record set by Scott Erickson in 1991 and also became only the third pitcher since 1950 to win 12 consecutive starts. Bob Gibson of St. Louis did it in 1968 and Pat Dobson did it with Baltimore in 1971.
Radke (16-5), a 24-year-old right-hander, who entered this season with a career major-league record of 22-30, figured to have an easy time against Toronto’s anemic lineup - and he did.
The Blue Jays, whose .239 team average entering the game was by far the worst in the majors, didn’t get a runner past second until the seventh when Alex Gonzalez’s two-out, two-run double ended Radke’s shutout bid.
Both of Toronto’s runs off Radke were unearned. Radke allowed five hits, struck out four and walked three as he lowered his ERA during the streak to 1.87. He left after throwing 125 pitches in seven innings.
Colbrunn’s second career grand slam, his first in the A.L., came off reliever Omar Daal in Minnesota’s six-run fifth inning. Chris Carpenter (0-4) walked in the first two runs that inning.
Brewers 5, Angels 2
Jose Valentin, Dave Nilsson and Jeromy Burnitz all homered in the fourth inning as Milwaukee beat Anaheim for its 10th victory in 12 games.
Scott Karl (7-10) won for the fifth time in five starts since the All-Star break. The left-hander was charged with two runs, one earned, and five hits in six-plus innings. He struck out six and did not walk a batter for the second consecutive start.
The loss was only the seventh in 28 games for the Angels, who slipped back into a tie for first place in the A.L. West with the idle Seattle Mariners.
Ken Hill (6-9), making his home debut and second start for the Angels since the July 29 trade from Texas, surrendered the three home runs in a span of four batters after giving up none in his previous 30 innings.
Yankees 5, Royals 4
Kansas City, Mo.
David Wells came within two outs of getting his third shutout in four starts, Charlie Hayes hit two home runs and New York held on to beat Kansas City.
Wells (12-5) took a three-hitter into the ninth, but was relieved by Jeff Nelson with one out after allowing a pair of singles and committing a throwing error that allowed Kansas City to score its first run.
An RBI groundout made it 4-2 and Mike Sweeney hit a two-out, two-run homer before Mariano Rivera got the final out for his A.L.-leading 33rd save.
Joe Girardi’s run-scoring double in the eighth gave New York what turned out to be the winning run.
Red Sox 11, Rangers 5
Troy O’Leary’s three-run triple in the eighth inning led Boston to a comeback victory over Texas.
With Boston trailing 5-4, John Valentin led off the eighth with a single off Matt Whiteside and Mike Stanley drew a walk off Danny Patterson (7-5). Wil Cordero’s infield single loaded the bases and O’Leary’s drive to left hit off the scoreboard to clear the bases.
Butch Henry (5-2) pitched 2-1/3 innings of one-hit relief to pick up the victory.
Nomar Garciaparra went 3 for 5 with his 19th homer and an RBI single for his league-leading 47th multi-hit game.
Indians 7, Tigers 2
Manny Ramirez homered and drove in four runs, Jim Thome hit his 30th homer and Charles Nagy continued his domination of Detroit as Cleveland beat the Tigers.
Nagy (11-7) improved to 12-4 lifetime against the Tigers, his most wins against any club.
Thome’s homer came in the seventh and made him the first Cleveland left-handed hitter to hit 30 homers in successive seasons since Hal Trosky in 1936-37.
Scott Sanders (3-9), making his fourth start since being traded to Detroit from Seattle, gave up five runs on eight hits and two walks over 4-2/3 innings. He has lost all three of his starts for Detroit.
Clearing the bases
Jim Edmonds was placed on the 15-day disabled list by the Anaheim Angels. The move is retroactive to Aug. 1. To replace Edmonds on the roster, the Angels activated designated hitter Eddie Murray… . Angels pitcher Chuck Finley was named the American League Player of the Week after passing Nolan Ryan as the club’s all-time winningest pitcher with his 139th victory… . Cleveland Indians right-hander Orel Hershiser was placed on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to July 29, with a strain in his lower back.