- Associated Press - Wednesday, July 1, 2015

CINCINNATI (AP) - Torii Hunter got the Minnesota Twins moving after a long wait.

Hunter homered again after a long delay at the start of the game, and Phil Hughes got his third straight victory, leading the Twins to an 8-5 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday night.

The start was delayed 2 hours, 1 minute because a storm was headed toward the ballpark. The storm dissolved on the way.

Hunter hit a solo homer in the first inning off Anthony DeSclafani (5-6), his fourth homer in the last four games. He later singled and doubled, leaving him 8 for 17 in the last four games.

“He’s had a really good trip,” manager Paul Molitor said. “His bat seems fresh and quick. He’s really rallying the troops.”

Eduardo Nunez had three hits, including an RBI single, while Kurt Suzuki drove home two runs with a single during a four-run seventh inning as the Twins evened the interleague series.

Hughes (7-6) gave up solo homers by Eugenio Suarez and Marlon Byrd, leaving in the seventh inning with the Twins up 7-2. Two errors and Blaine Boyer’s run-scoring wild pitch helped the Reds close the gap.

In his last two starts, Hughes allowed only two runs in 16 innings. He kept the momentum going and might have gotten deeper into the game if his defense had helped.

“You always gain confidence when things are going right and you’re winning games,” Hughes said. “It’s high right now. I hope it continues.”

Glen Perkins gave up a walk in the ninth while getting his 25th consecutive save, the second-longest streak in Twins history.

Many of the 28,556 fans sat in their seats during the long delay at the outset and watched the scoreboard, which showed the U.S. beating Germany 2-0 in a Women’s World Cup semifinal.

During the rain-less delay, Reds second baseman Brandon Phillips tweeted: “This has to be one of the dumbest rain delays I’ve ever seen … Let’s get ready for Midnight Baseball!!!” The game ended at 12:30 a.m. with a few hundred fans in the stands.

Hunter’s 12th homer put the Twins ahead right away.

Joe Mauer’s sacrifice fly made it 3-1 in the fifth inning. Brian Dozier doubled and scored as the Twins pulled away in the seventh.

AGAINST THAT OTHER LEAGUE

The Twins are 8-9 in interleague play this season. The Reds are 4-9.

STREAKS

Hughes walked Tucker Barnhart in the seventh, ending his streak of 27 innings without allowing a base on balls. He hadn’t walked a batter since June 14, a span of 104 hitters. … Barnhart extended his hitting streak to six games. … Todd Frazier of the Reds doubled to extend his streak to nine games. … Reds reliever J.J. Hoover allowed a run for the first time since April 21, ending his streak of 16 scoreless appearances.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Twins: C Suzuki was in the starting lineup despite being hit in the throat by a throw during Monday’s game.

Reds: 2B Phillips was out of the lineup for the second consecutive game with sore hands. … RHP Raisel Iglesias threw 43 pitches in three innings during his first rehab start for Triple-A Louisville on Tuesday night. Iglesias, who is recovering from a strained oblique, gave up one hit, walked one and struck out three.

UP NEXT

Twins: Trevor May (4-6) is coming off the worst start of his career. He retired only one batter while allowing six runs and six hits in a 10-4 loss at Milwaukee last Friday.

Reds: Johnny Cueto (4-5) makes his sixth start since being sidelined by an inflamed pitching elbow. He’s 1-1 with a 2.87 ERA in those five starts since returning.

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Follow Joe Kay on Twitter: https://twitter.com/apjoekay

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