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05/04/2013 5:55 PM EDT
Kazmir gets 1st win since 2010, Indians beat Twins
CLEVELAND 7, MINNESOTA 3

CLEVELAND (AP) -- Scott Kazmir can be excused for not recalling
any details about his last major league victory.



"I can't remember that long ago," he said.



Kazmir earned his first win in three seasons Saturday as the
Cleveland Indians defeated the Minnesota Twins 7-3 for their
sixth straight victory.



A two-time AL All-Star who pitched in an independent league last
season, Kazmir (1-1) allowed two runs in six innings. It was his
first win since beating Tampa Bay on Sept. 19, 2010, while with
the Angels.



The 29-year-old Kazmir overcame a series of arm injuries and a
stint with the Sugar Land Skeeters of the Atlantic League in
2012.



"I don't need to be reminded of it anymore," Kazmir said. "I'm
glad this is out of the way so I don't have to worry about it
anymore."



Nick Swisher homered in his first at-bat since missing three
games with a sore shoulder. Jason Kipnis also homered in the
first inning, added an RBI single in the second and had three
hits.



Cleveland has won six straight for the first time since winning
seven in a row April 26-May 3, 2011.



Kevin Correia (3-2) failed to go seven innings for the first
time in six starts this season. Rookie outfielder Aaron Hicks,
the Twins' top prospect, hit his first major league home run to
lead off the fifth, clearing the 19-foot wall in left field.



Kazmir, who allowed eight earned runs in 8 1-3 innings in his
first two starts, struck out seven.



"This dude was pitching independent ball last year," Swisher
said. "For him to be where he is now, he's got a lot left in the
tank. I'm glad he's on our side."



Kazmir won 53 games for the Rays from 2005-09 before his career
was derailed. He was 9-15 for the Angels in 2010 and appeared in
only one game in 2011 before being released.



Kazmir was 3-6 with a 5.34 ERA in 14 games for Sugar Land last
season and signed a minor league contract with the Indians in
January. He won a spot in the rotation in spring training, but
ended up on the 15-day disabled list before the season started
with a pulled muscle in his rib cage.



"He's an easy guy to pull for," Indians manager Terry Francona
said. "He loves to pitch. He wants so bad to make this work.
We're pulling for everybody. That's the way we are, but it's
hard not to have a soft spot when you see what he's been
through."



Kipnis, who has six RBIs in his last two games, and Swisher both
homered to right in the first. Swisher, who entered the game in
a 4-for-28 slump, missed the two-game series against
Philadelphia and didn't play Friday.



"You don't want to show up in the lineup and not pull your
weight," Swisher said. "These guys have been on fire. As soon as
you get back in the lineup you have to do your part as well."



Correia, who had won three consecutive starts, allowed four runs
in five innings.



The Twins scored in the second on Pedro Florimon's RBI single,
but his misplay in the field helped the Indians add two in the
bottom of the inning. After Michael Brantley's single gave
Cleveland a 3-1 lead, Florimon was unable to catch Kipnis' popup
that fell for a run-scoring single. The shortstop ranged into
shallow left field, but the ball drifted away from him and
dropped in.



Kipnis tripled in the seventh and scored on Asdrubal Cabrera's
double. Mark Reynolds scored Cabrera with a two-out single.



Twins manager Ron Gardenhire knows the Indians are finding ways
to win.



"It's about finding the outfield grass and getting the balls
through," he said. "It's not about how you hit `em and how hard
you hit `em. And they did that. They popped some balls, they
rolled them through. They ended up getting a couple more runs
and kind of hung on from there."



Ryan Doumit's RBI single off Joe Smith in the eighth cut the
lead to 6-3, but Chris Parmelee flied out with two on to end the
inning. Ezequiel Carrera had an RBI single in the bottom of the
inning.



Hicks, who is batting .123, homered on Kazmir's first pitch of
the fifth. Joe Mauer had a hit and a walk in three at-bats and
is in a 5-for-42 slump.



NOTES: Indians setup man Vinnie Pestano was unavailable because
of a "cranky" right elbow, according to Francona. Pestano threw
a bullpen session before the game, but said he could go on the
disabled list if the elbow doesn't feel better in the next day
or two. ... Hicks leads AL rookies in walks with 13. ... Twins
OF Oswaldo Arcia didn't start Saturday after starting 12
consecutive games. He had a pinch-hit single in the seventh. ...
Mauer was the DH after catching 10 innings Friday. ... Indians
OF Michael Bourn (lacerated right index finger) took batting
practice Friday for the first time since being injured on April
14. Bourn could begin a minor league rehabilitation assignment
in the next few days. ... Francona said RHP Brett Myers (sore
elbow) threw off flat ground Saturday and is making progress to
throwing off the mound . ... The Indians' April 23 rainout in
Chicago has been rescheduled as part of a traditional
doubleheader on June 28. .... The series ends Sunday when RHP
Mike Pelfrey (2-3) faces RHP Corey Kluber (2-0).

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