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Santana tosses six shutout innings in win

8/31/2003

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) -- Johan Santana gave his manager a scare
when he limped off the mound before the seventh inning.

The Minnesota Twins are crossing their fingers that Santana --
their most consistent pitcher since he joined the rotation -- was
bothered by nothing more than a cramp.

Santana pitched six shutout innings before leaving with what the
Twins said was a cramp in his left leg, and Shannon Stewart drove
in two runs as the Twins beat the Texas Rangers 2-0 on Saturday
night.

Santana (9-3) allowed five hits to win his sixth straight
decision. Santana, 8-2 in his 13 starts this season, struck out
four and didn't walk a batter.

"He hasn't been feeling well for the last few days and only ate
a hot dog all day," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "He just
cramped up a little. I took off running from the dugout like I was
going to rub him down. There was a little sense of panic. We just
needed to get some fluids in him."

Santana went out to warm up for the seventh, but was favoring
his left leg. He was replaced by Juan Rincon.

"I had a hamstring injury in spring training and that felt like
a knot in the back of my leg," said Santana, who will be evaluated
Sunday. "This didn't feel like that. Hopefully it's a cramp and
not anything else. It was hot and humid out there and that also
might have caused me to cramp."

Rincon allowed one hit over 1 2-3 innings and LaTroy Hawkins got
the final out of the eighth, retiring Alex Rodriguez on a fly ball
with a runner on second.

Eddie Guardado pitched a perfect ninth for his 31st save in 34
chances.

"The bullpen did a great job," Gardenhire said. "Hawk has had
some success against Rodriguez, and not many guys do. And he got
him out."

In the first, Santana was struck on the left thigh with a line
drive by Texas' Mark Teixeira, but Santana remained in after a
brief visit by Gardenhire. Santana said getting hit with the line
drive didn't bother him.

The Twins and Kansas City Royals are a half-game behind the
first-place Chicago White Sox in the AL Central.

Teixeira went 3-for-4 for the Rangers, who have lost five
straight and eight of nine.

Rangers starter Mickey Callaway (1-5) and Santana both pitched
shutout ball over the first five innings before the Twins broke
through in the sixth.

Callaway was making his first start for Texas after his contract
was purchased from Triple-A Oklahoma earlier in the day.

A.J. Pierzynski hit a leadoff single in the sixth and went to
third when Denny Hocking faked a bunt, then slapped the ball just
inside the third-base line for a double.

Stewart singled up the middle to give the Twins a 2-0 lead.

Callaway allowed two runs and five hits over six innings. He
struck out four and didn't issue a walk.

Callaway was 1-4 for Anaheim earlier this season before he was
released July 28. The Rangers signed Callaway on Aug. 8 and
assigned him to Oklahoma, where he was 2-0 with a 1.59 ERA in four
starts.

"I thought Mickey was impressive tonight," Rangers manager
Buck Showalter said. "He carried over what he's been doing (in the
minors). He's a guy we're thinking of bringing to camp next year so
let's get a look at him now. He gave us a chance to win, but we
didn't do anything offensively, obviously."

Game notes
The start was delayed by rain for 1 hour, 26 minutes. ...
Twins LHP Eric Milton pitched two scoreless innings in his first
minor league rehab assignment Saturday. Playing for Fort Myers in
the Florida State League, Milton -- out since mid-March with a knee
injury -- allowed one hit, struck out two and walked two. He threw
38 pitches. Team officials will wait until Sunday to see how
Milton's arm responds before scheduling another rehab stint. ... In
the fourth, Stewart dropped a pop-up in right field hit by Shane
Spencer for a two-base error. Stewart has five errors this season.
... Stewart is hitting .351 (85-for-242) lifetime against Texas.