Verlander (17-8) won for the fifth time in six starts, holding the Twins to four hits and striking out eight while issuing two walks.
The Tigers ace left with a 6-0 lead, and after the Detroit bullpen allowed Minnesota to score four runs in the eighth Jose Valverde worked around a ninth-inning walk to secure the victory with his 33rd save.
The win, coupled with a loss by the second-place Chicago White Sox to Tampa Bay Saturday, boosted the Tigers into a two-game lead in the American League Central with four contests left to play.
Miguel Cabrera strengthened his triple crown bid with a three-run homer, tying him with Texas' Josh Hamilton for an AL-best 43 home runs. He extended his league lead in RBI to 136, while his .327 batting average is seven points better than the Twins' Joe Mauer.
Minnesota's P.J. Walters (2-5) allowed two runs on four hits through five frames.
Ryan Doumit cracked an eighth-inning grand slam for the Twins.
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