MINNEAPOLIS -- The New York Yankees beat Minnesota 7-3 on Tuesday night at Target Field by building an early lead, then pummeling the Twins bullpen for the second game in a row.
The Bronx Bombers took their time about it, but they hammered out 10 hits in the game, scoring three times in the fifth to take the lead and then adding four runs in the seventh to bury the Twins.
The big seventh inning started when Twins reliever Anthony Swarzak gave up a double to David Adams, who later scored on an Alberto Gonzalez single.
Ichiro Suzuki singled, then he and Gonzalez scored on Robinson Cano's three-run homer -- Cano's third home run of the series and fourth in the past three games.
"That's nice. It's really good to see," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said. "When he's hot, we can really put up some big innings."
New York starter Phil Hughes, who got the win with a strong performance, had plenty of offensive support. He scattered six hits across four innings and frustrated Twins hitters most of the night. He threw 114 pitches in seven innings and gave up one run with two walks and three strikeouts.
"They had a lot of lefties in the lineup, I thought I was able to get my fastballs inside on those guys for the most part," Hughes said. "Made a few critical when I had to, got out of a few jams. The offense did their job. It was a good win."
Twins starter Samuel Deduno had another quality start, lasting six innings and giving up three runs, five hits and one walk with one strikeout.
Deduno had allowed no hits in the first four innings but gave up four in the fifth, handing the Yankees a lead they never relinquished.
The Twins scored two runs in the ninth on a Brian Dozier two-run double, but it only made the final score less lopsided. Adam Warren came in and walked Joe Mauer to put the tying run in the on-deck circle. The Yankees countered with Mariano Rivera to shut down Minnesota's final threat and pick up his 27th save.
In the third, Twins center fielder Aaron Hicks, just back from the disabled list via Triple-A Rochester, bounced a double off the right-field wall. He scored when Joe Mauer ended a 0-for-18 hitless streak with a single to right.
In the bottom of the fourth, Trevor Plouffe drew a leadoff walk and Oswaldo Arcia moved him to third with a stand-up double to left. But Yankees pitcher Hughes refocused and struck out two batters looking and got Pedro Florimon to ground out to short-ending the threat.
"We missed out opportunities," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "We had second and third with no outs and didn't get one in. You need to put a ball in play there and we didn't get that from the first two hitters. That kind of took the wind out of us."
"I thought that was the most important part of the game," Girardi said. "It was an outstanding job on (Hughes') part"
The Yankees grabbed the lead in the fifth with singles by Lyle Overbay and Adams and a two-run double by Gonzalez. Gonzalez got to third and scored when Suzuki slapped a dribbler down the first-base line that Deduno couldn't handle.
"Deduno was good," Gardenhire said. "The bleeders they hit off of him you can't do much about. One little tapper to first-he probably had a chance if he can pick the ball up-but it was a tough play with Suzuki running. But he gave us an opportunity, I like what he did."
NOTES: The Twins are hitting .328 (22-for-67) with runners in scoring position in their past eight games. ... Cano has combined to go 10-for-17 (.588) with seven runs, one double, three home runs and five RBI in the first four games of the current road trip. ... Yankees pitching has held their opponents to four runs or less 55 times this season, the most for any American League staff and fourth most in the majors. ... The Twins announced after the game that OFJosh Willingham would have surgery on his left knee to fix a tear in his meniscus. He will be out four to six weeks.