It’s not often you notice a young player learning a valuable lesson, right at the moment it’s sinking in. But Kyle Gibson and Eduardo Escobar both had those baseball epiphanies Friday night.

Gibson stared down two-time MVP Miguel Cabrera with the bases loaded, Escobar showed newfound patience in his own bags-jammed situation, and the pair of second-year regulars carried the Twins to their third consecutive win, a 2-0 victory over Detroit that inched Minnesota within three games of first place in the AL Central.

“The only way [they’re] going to get better in those big situations,” manager Ron Gardenhire said, “is if I leave them out there.”

He did, and both demonstrated notable progress — particularly in Gibson’s case, given how poorly a nearly identical situation turned out last month. In his May 10 start at Comerica Park, a two-out error extended an inning and brought Cabrera to the plate with two runners on. The result: a three-run blast that ruined his day.

In the third inning Friday, another infield error, a misplayed grounder by Eduardo Nunez, gave the Tigers an extra out again. Up strode Cabrera, again with two runners on, again with a chance to ruin Gibson’s outing.

Seem familiar, Kyle?

“No, I try to forget about home runs as much as possible when you face that guy again,” Gibson said. “I knew that I just had to execute pitches.”

He did, getting Cabrera to bounce a sinker back to the mound to avert the disaster.

Two innings later, an even bigger threat. After Alex Avila singled and Gibson failed to handle Kevin Romine’s bunt, the Tigers loaded the bases with one out and their best hitter at the plate once more.