MINNEAPOLIS (AP) -- Craig Monroe hit a two-run homer off Justin Verlander and Brian Bass picked up his first major league win in relief of injured starter Scott Baker, leading the Minnesota Twins to a 4-1 victory over the Detroit Tigers on Saturday night.
Bass (1-0) allowed three hits in four scoreless innings, Pat Neshek and Jesse Crain combined to work the eighth, and Joe Nathan pitched the ninth for his 10th save in as many chances.
Michael Cuddyer also drove in two runs for the Twins, who have won four straight.
Curtis Granderson homered for the Tigers, who have cooled off since arriving in Minnesota. After scoring 20 runs in a three-game sweep of the New York Yankees, Detroit has managed only two runs against the Twins in two games. The teams play the final game of their three-game set on Sunday before the Tigers head home for a seven-game homestand against the Boston Red Sox and the Yankees.
Verlander (1-5) retired the first 10 batters he faced but ran into trouble in the fourth. Mike Lamb singled with one out, Joe Mauer doubled and Justin Morneau was intentionally walked to load the bases. Lamb scored on Cuddyer's groundout to give the Twins a 1-0 lead.
Cuddyer singled in Lamb in the sixth and Monroe hit his second homer of the season after Verlander walked Delmon Young on four pitches with none out in the seventh.
Baker left after three innings with a right groin injury. It was the same injury that forced him to leave a start against Texas a week earlier.
The right-hander was off to a strong start, retiring nine of the 10 batters he faced. Edgar Renteria led off the third with an infield single but Baker retired the next three batters before calling it a night. The team said he was removed as a precaution.
Verlander allowed seven hits and struck out five in seven innings.