SEATTLE – Edwin Encarnacion made several nice plays at first base early in the game, then hit a three-run homer in the seventh inning that helped the Seattle Mariners beat Minnesota 7-4 Sunday, snapping the Twins’ five-game winning streak.
Mitch Haniger and Daniel Vogelbach hit back-to-back homers as the Mariners ended a three-game skid, a day after an 18-4 drubbing.
Yusei Kukuchi (3-1) gave up one earned run in six innings, striking out six.
Primarily a designated hitter in recent seasons, the 36-year-old Encarnacion has been getting a lot of time at first base since being traded to Seattle in December.
Encarnacion cut across the diamond for a diving grab in the second inning and made a running, basket catch in foul territory in the third. He also stretched out twice to handle difficult throws for outs.
Haniger hit a two-out, two-run homer in the fifth that made it 3-all and Vogelbach followed with his 13th home run off Kyle Gibson (4-2).
Encarnacion provided a cushion with his 13th homer.
Jorge Polanco had four hits for the Twins.
Twins: RHP Jake Odorizzi (6-2, 2.63 ERA) goes for his seventh win in a row after victories in each of his last six starts as Minnesota plays at the Los Angeles Angels on Monday night.
• Twins 18, Mariners 4
SEATTLE – C.J. Cron and Jonathan Schoop each hit two home runs and Byron Buxton had a grand slam as part of the Minnesota Twins’ best offensive output of the season, an 18-4 rout of the Seattle Mariners on Saturday night.
Miguel Sano also homered for the Twins, who extended their season-high home run streak to 13 games and moved into a tie with Seattle for the major league home run lead with 87.
Minnesota’s 18 runs were a season high. The Twins have won the first three games of the four-game series, outscoring the Mariners 36-11.
Starter Jose Berrios was looking to rebound after his roughest outing of the season in which he gave up five runs and 12 hits, both season highs, in a loss to the Angels on Monday. Berrios cruised through the first four innings in this one, but wasn’t able to pick up the win. He was pulled in the fifth after giving up four runs and six hits in the inning.
Tyler Duffey (1-0) came on and went 1 1/3 innings to earn the victory.
Wade LeBlanc (2-1), making his first start in more than a month after returning from the injured list, gave up seven runs and seven hits – including a career-wost four home runs.
LeBlanc left his last outing on April 12 with a strained right oblique. Before Saturday’s game, Mariners manager Scott Servais said he hoped LeBlanc would have a “competitive outing” against the Twins, with a pitch limit around 75 pitches. LeBlanc didn’t meet either goal, getting knocked out in the third inning after throwing just 49 pitches.
Minnesota’s offense started the rout in the second inning when Cron hit his first homer, the 100th of his career. Later in the inning, Buxton’s grand slam – the Twins’ first of the year – opened the floodgates.
Buxton and Schoop both tied career highs with five RBIs. Buxton added a run-scoring single to his grand slam, and Schoop had two-run and three-run homers.