Pineda sharp, bats stay hot as Twins take down Rangers

Marwin Gonzalez came up big with an eighth-inning home run.
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Jason Castro

Jason Castro drove in three runs and Marwin Gonzalez hit a big home run in the eighth inning to help the Twins hold off the Rangers 7-4 Saturday afternoon at Target Field. 

Castro gave the Twins a 1-0 lead in the second inning with a sacrifice fly, and later gave the Twins a 5-0 lead with an RBI single in the fourth. Byron Buxton sandwiched a two-run single in the second inning to help provide a cushion for starting pitcher Michael Pineda. 

Pineda allowed just one run on four hits while striking out nine in six innings. 

Tyler Duffey pitched the seventh and was tagged for three runs, which put the Rangers back within a run at 5-4. 

But Gonzalez put the Twins up 6-4 with a solo homer in the eighth, and Castro's double made it 7-4.

The Twins are now 56-32. They didn't reach 56 wins until Aug. 15 last year. 

Minnesota hosts the Rangers again Sunday at 1:10 p.m. 

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