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Stellar Berrios suffers tough-luck loss

Righty strikes out 8 and allows two runs but Twins offer little run support
Special to MLB.com

SEATTLE -- Twins ace Jose Berrios' 24th birthday started out well Sunday. He got a well-wishing phone call in the morning from his three children.

And in the afternoon, he gave Minnesota 7 1/3 strong innings in a road start against the Seattle Mariners.

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SEATTLE -- Twins ace Jose Berrios' 24th birthday started out well Sunday. He got a well-wishing phone call in the morning from his three children.

And in the afternoon, he gave Minnesota 7 1/3 strong innings in a road start against the Seattle Mariners.

View Full Game Coverage

But the Twins' bullpen could not clean up Berrios' mini-mess in the eighth inning. Ryon Healy's tiebreaking two-run double off Addison Reed gave the Mariners a 3-1 victory at Safeco Field.

Video: MIN@SEA: Berrios escapes a bases-loaded jam in 3rd

The Twins were swept for the third time this season.

"We're just not supporting our pitching that we are getting particularly well," Twins manager Paul Molitor said. "You can talk about matchups late in game and all those types of things, but the reality is … we cannot seem to get a hit."

Mitch Haniger reached on a one-out walk, and Berrios' outing was done in the eighth inning after 106 pitches.

"He was just laboring a little bit," Molitor said. "When you are pitching in tight games, it's not just the [pitch] count, it is the type of game you are in."

Video: MIN@SEA: Escobar charges in to make a play at third

Molitor brought in three relievers for Seattle's next three at-bats. Ryan Pressly struck out Nelson Cruz for the second out.

But Kyle Seager hit a single to center field off left-hander Zach Duke, and Healy followed by lining a double off Reed, a right-hander, in the left-center gap that split outfielders Eddie Rosario and Byron Buxton, giving the Mariners a 3-1 lead.

"That is just part of the game," Berrios said. "I couldn't complete the eighth inning. [Molitor] took me out. He left it to the bullpen. It just didn't work out today."

Video: MIN@SEA: Buxton throws Healy out at home to end 8th

Minnesota got to Seattle starting pitcher Mike Leake early with back-to-back hits to open the second inning, capped by Eduardo Escobar's RBI double over Ben Gamel's head in left field, scoring Rosario to grab a 1-0 lead.

The Mariners tied it at 1-1 on Seager's leadoff home run off Berrios in the fourth.

At one point after the Seager home run, Berrios (5-5) retired 12 of 13 Mariners hitters, flashing an effective curveball. He ended up striking out eight.

Video: MIN@SEA: Escobar drives in Rosario with a double

Asked how he was going to celebrate the rest of his birthday, he said he would do it on the airplane to Kansas City, where the team plays next.

"Sleep," he said.

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Considering how good Reed has been this season (2.36 ERA, seven holds), it is tough to criticize one poor outing. He did leave a 91 mph fastball up to Healy in an 0-1 count that the Mariners' first baseman rocketed into the gap to break the tie. And he did the same thing to catcher Chris Herrmann in the next at-bat that was ripped for a single.

MAUER MENDING
It appears first baseman Joe Mauer, who has been on the 10-day disabled list since May 19 with a cervical neck strain, is close to resuming baseball activities, Molitor said.

Mauer was expected to do more batting, cardiovascular and weightlifting work Sunday. He also got in a limited batting practice session before he heads to Target Field on Monday for fielding and throwing.

MITEL REPLAY OF THE DAY
In a 1-1 game, Detroit catcher Bobby Wilson threw out Gamel trying to steal second base with nobody out in the eighth inning. Mariners manager Scott Servais challenged the play, and the ruling that second baseman Brian Dozier tagged Gamel before he reached the bag would stand.

Video: MIN@SEA: Wilson catches Gamel stealing, call stands

UP NEXT
Coming off his longest start of the season (6 2/3 shutout innings in 6-0 win against Detroit on Tuesday), right-hander Lance Lynn (2-4, 6.34 ERA) will begin the team's three-game series Monday at Kansas City. It will be his fifth career start against the Royals. Kansas City will send right-hander Jakob Junis (5-3, 3.52) to the mound.

Todd Milles is a contributor to MLB.com based in Seattle.

Minnesota Twins, Jose Berrios