SEATTLE (Ticker) --
did not have another double-digit strikeout performance, but thanks to rookie
, he got another win.
Morneau hit a pair of two-run homers and Santana pitched seven strong innings as the
snapped a four-game losing streak with a 6-3 triumph over the
"We didn't want to leave town today without a win and we came out very positive about what we wanted to do," said Santana, whose team visits the
in an important American League Central Division series starting Friday. "Now we will be a little more relaxed when we go to Cleveland.
Santana (12-6) yielded one run and seven hits as he posted his fifth straight win. Santana, who had struck out at least 10 batters in nine of his last 12 starts, whiffed seven and walked two. He improved to 10-2 with a 1.66 ERA in his last 13 starts.
"I control my fastball, I get ahead in the count and I am not afraid to use all my pitches," Santana said of his recent success. With two outs in the top of the first,
and fellow rookie Morneau followed with his ninth homer of the season.
added a two-run triple to make it 4-0 one inning later.
breathed a little easier after his team grabbed the early four-run cushion.
"We jumped out to an early lead, and with Johan pitching, we were confident he would hold the lead for us," Gardenhire said. The score was 4-1 with one out in the fifth when Ford again doubled and Morneau again drove him in with a homer. It was Morneau's first multi-homer game.
Morneau, who hails from nearby British Columbia, said although he had made many visits to the Kingdome as a youngster, this was the first time he had seen Safeco Field. He invited about 50 friends and relatives to create his own personal rooting section in left field.
The Twins traded
to Boston to make room for the young slugger and he has not disappointed them. Morneau has eight home runs and 25 RBI since being recalled from Class AAA Rochester on July 16.
"It's a little easier now that I know when I come out here I am going to play every day," Morneau said. "You can look the night before and see who's pitching and kind of think about that."
Gardenhire was impressed that Morneau hit one homer to right field and another to center.
"He's a very strong kid, so he can do those kind of things," Gardenhire said. "Not very many people in the game can to those things and that's one of the things that makes him so promising."
After Seattle pulled within 6-3 on a two-run homer by
in the eighth,
struck out the side in the ninth for his 33rd save in 34 opportunities, including his club-record 26th in a row. Nathan has not allowed a run since June 6, a span of 26 appearances.
Franklin (3-11) surrendered six runs and eight hits in five innings and fell to 0-6 in 10 starts since a win over the
Chicago White Sox
on June 5.
"It came down to three pitches for Frankie - two to Morneau and one to Stewart," Mariners manager
said. "He probably didn't have his best command today. But he is a guy that we haven't given much run support."
Boone's homer extended his hitting streak to a career-high 16 games and
added two more singles for his major league-leading 58th multi-hit game and 14th in his last 17.