MINNEAPOLIS -- Detroit scored a pair of runs in three straight innings as the Tigers defeated the Minnesota Twins 13-4 Sunday at Target Field.
The victory meant a split in the four-game weekend series in Minnesota, and combined with the loss by Kansas City at Texas, moved the Tigers to within two games of the Royals for first place in the American League Central Division.
Each team scored three runs in the third, but Detroit's offense got hot in the middle innings, scoring twice in each of the fifth, sixth and seventh innings to take a commanding 9-4 lead through seven innings.
Detroit pounded out 18 hits Sunday and 60 in the series, the most Minnesota has allowed in a four-game set in franchise history. It was the most hits in a four-game series for the Tigers since they had 60 against the White Sox in 1956.
Twice, designated hitter Victor Martinez was in the middle of the action, giving the Tigers the lead for good with an RBI single in the fifth inning, then hammering his 25th homer of the season with two outs in the sixth.
Center fielder Rajai Davis added a two-run homer of his own -- his seventh -- in the seventh inning to make it 9-3.
Martinez and shortstop Eugenio Suarez each had three hits to pace the Tigers. Five others had two hits and every starter had at least one.
Right-hander Max Scherzer got the win, allowing three runs on seven hits and a walk in five innings, improving to 15-4.
Minnesota's Kyle Gibson was responsible for five runs on eight hits and four walks over 4 2/3 innings, dropping to 11-10.
NOTES: Tigers 1B/DH Miguel Cabrera was not in the lineup Sunday after reaggravating a sore right ankle Saturday. With an off-day Monday, Tigers manager Brad Ausmus thought having two days off in a row would help Cabrera. ... Tigers RHP Anibal Sanchez, on the 15-day disabled list since Aug. 9 with a strain in his right pectoral, could return as soon as Saturday in a doubleheader against Chicago. The right-hander is scheduled to throw Monday and off a mound two days later if all goes well. ... Tigers RHP Joakim Soria was scheduled to throw for a second straight day Sunday. He has been on the 15-day DL since Aug. 10 with a left oblique strain. ... Twins RHP Yohan Pino reported soreness behind his right throwing elbow following a five-inning performance in game one of Saturday's doubleheader. Pino was optioned to Triple-A Rochester after the game but will remain in the Twin Cities to get treatment.