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Twins Walk Off With 5-4 Victory Over Blue Jays

(Sports Network) - Alexi Casilla singled home two runs with two outs in the bottom of the ninth, lifting the Minnesota Twins to a 5-4 win over the Toronto Blue Jays in the third of a four-game set at Target Field.

Casilla also singled in two runs in the fifth inning for the Twins, who rallied from a 4-1 deficit to win for just the second time in their last nine games. The victory also kept Minnesota alive for home-field advantage throughout the American League playoffs.

The Twins trailed 4-3 heading to the ninth against Kevin Gregg (2-6), but Delmon Young led off with a double. The Toronto closer retired the next two batters before issuing walks to both Jason Kubel and Jose Morales. Casilla quickly took a pair of strikes, then worked the count full and fouled off a pair of pitches before grounding a base hit up the middle to plate a pair of runners and set off a wild celebration.

"I was battling him until I got the right pitch to hit and I hit it right up the middle and we got a 'W,'" said Casilla.

Young also drove in a run for Minnesota, which received four innings of one- hit relief from its bullpen after starter Brian Duensing allowed four runs on seven hits with four walks and three strikeouts in five innings. Matt Capps (2-0) picked up the win with a perfect ninth.

Shaun Marcum was in line for the win for Toronto after yielding three runs and five hits with no walks and four strikeouts in seven innings. Edwin Encarnacion became the seventh different Blue Jay to reach 20 home runs with a two-run shot and Vernon Wells also doubled in a run for Toronto, which lost for just the second time in its last 10 games.

"We have a good ballclub and Marcum pitched well," said Blue Jays manager Cito Gaston. "We had some opportunities to drive in some runs. They had a big ninth inning and came back to win the ballgame."

Toronto grabbed a 1-0 lead in the first. Yunel Escobar reached second on a one-out single and an error before Jose Bautista drew a walk. Wells then doubled down the left field line, scoring Escobar easily, but a perfect relay nailed Bautista at the plate.

Minnesota got the run back in the bottom of the inning when Orlando Hudson tripled with one out and scored on a grounder to short by Young, but the Jays went back ahead in the second as Encarnacion followed a single by John Buck with a drive over the wall in left-center field.

The Blue Jays loaded the bases in the fourth on a pair of singles and a walk, but came away with only one run when Jose Molina grounded into a double play.

Minnesota pulled within one in the home fifth. Kubel led off with a base hit and Morales doubled him to third before both runners scored on a bloop single by Casilla.

Game Notes

Young recorded his 46th double, one shy of the Twins record set by Justin Morneau in 2008...Encarnacion has homered in each game of the series and has four total in the three games...Bautista walked for the 100th time this season and became the 14th player in baseball history with at least 100 walks and 50 homers in the same season. Boston's David Ortiz and Philadelphia's Ryan Howard were the last to accomplish the feat in 2006...Toronto has 255 homers this season, two shy of the third-most in baseball history. The 1996 Baltimore Orioles hit 257. The 1997 Seattle Mariners have the most with 264 and the 2005 Texas Rangers hit 260.

Photographs by Micah Taylor, clairity, and Fibonacci Blue used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.