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Jones matches career-best five hits

5/7/2003

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- Jacque Jones left Tropicana Field
with a nice memento from the second five-hit game of his career.

"I've got a new house. When I do things like that, I collect
things from the game,'' Jones said after hitting a pair of solo
homers and going 5-for-5 Tuesday night as the Minnesota Twins beat
Tampa Bay 7-3 for their ninth straight victory over the Devil Rays.

The latest piece of memorabilia headed for the game room in the
outfielder's San Diego home is the ball the Twins retrieved after
he beat out an infield hit off Victor Zambrano in the ninth.

Jones finished a triple shy of the cycle, but matched his career
high for hits set at Chicago last July 22.

"I just wanted to keep having good at-bats,'' Jones said,
adding that he wasn't really thinking about hitting for the cycle.
"Hopefully, good things were going to happen if I had good
at-bats.''

Jones, who boosted his batting average 30 points to .336,
homered off Steve Parris (0-3) in the first and third, then singled
in the fourth and doubled in the sixth off Nick Bierbrodt.

"He's getting more and more consistent,'' Twins manager Ron
Gardenhire said.

"He's one guy when he gets hot, he can be really hot. He had a
good night tonight. Balls found holes. You have to have a little
luck involved, but he also hit some balls very hard.''

Brad Radke (3-3), pitching while appealing a five-game
suspension for his role in a beanball dustup with Tampa Bay last
week, scattered seven hits over seven innings. He walked one and
struck out six.

Dustan Mohr and Torii Hunter each hit two-run homers for the
Twins, who have won nine straight against Tampa Bay dating to April
25, 2002. Corey Koskie added an RBI single in the ninth.

Jones hit the 17th leadoff homer of his career on the third
pitch of the game. He homered to nearly the same spot in
right-center in the third against Parris, who allowed six runs on
six hits in three innings.

Mohr hit a two-run homer off Parris in the second and Hunter
added his two-run shot off the Devil Rays starter in the third to
give the Twins a 6-0 lead.

Parris matched a career high by allowing four homers. His
shortest outing of the season also cost the 35-year-old
right-hander his spot in the Devil Rays' rotation.

"Some of those pitches weren't located all that bad. His
velocity's just not there,'' Tampa Bay manager Lou Piniella said.

Radke was suspended for five games for hitting Toby Hall with a
pitch in the sixth inning of Minnesota's 8-5 win over Tampa Bay
last Wednesday night. The right-hander appealed, delaying any
suspension until after a hearing with Bob DuPuy, baseball's chief
operating officer.

Bierbrodt, meanwhile, returned from the three-game suspension he
received for throwing behind a batter in that game. He replaced
Parris in the fourth and pitched three scoreless innings, allowing
three hits and striking out two.

"That's all over with. You move on,'' Radke said of last week's
trouble.

Gardenhire agreed.

"We weren't worried about that,'' he said. "I talked to Lou
before the game. We're here to play baseball. Both teams are.''

Radke limited the Devil Rays to two hits in the first five
innings. Tampa Bay broke through for a pair of runs in the sixth
after Rocco Baldelli, Aubrey Huff and Travis Lee singled to load
the bases with no outs.

Baldelli scored when Al Martin grounded out and Huff came home
on Hall's sacrifice fly, trimming Minnesota's lead to 6-2.

Rey Ordonez added an RBI double in the ninth for Tampa Bay.

Game notes
Tampa Bay's nine-game losing streak against the Twins is
its longest current skid against any club. The franchise record for
consecutive losses to one team is 11 against the Red Sox in 2001
and the Yankees in 1998 and '99. ... Jones hit 11 leadoff homers
last season. ... Parris has allowed 11 homers in 36 innings. ...
The Devil Rays signed former Kansas City OF Mark Quinn to a minor
league contract. He joined Triple-A Durham. ... Minnesota
left-hander Johan Santana, who pitched the last two innings in
relief of Radke, will start Friday night against Boston in place of
Rick Reed, who has a sore back.