The Kansas City Royals exercised a few demons left over from a sweep earlier this year at the hands of the Minnesota Twins at Target Field by taking the opener of this series in Minneapolis, 6-1.
Danny Duffy (5-7, 2.60) pitched 5.2 innings for the win. He gave up only four hits, one run and struck out three. Aaron Crow, Francisley Bueno, Kelvin Herrera and Michael Mariot combined to hold the Twins scoreless over the final 3.1 innings.
Yohan Pino (0-1, 6.30) took the loss, surrendering four runs in 5.2 innings.
The bottom of the order did all the damage for the Royals. Alcides Escobar was the offensive star of the game, going 2-for-4 with two doubles and four runs batted in. Salvador Perez hit a solo shot for his team leading tenth home run.
Maybe more impressive than all, however, was Mike Moustakas going 2-for-3, with both hits to left field.
The top four in the order struggled. After going 4-5 the night before, Lorenzo Cain was 0-for-4 with four strikeouts, adding to the total for Cain-Eric Hosmer-Billy Butler-Alex Gordon combining for 2-for-18 with no RBIs and only one run scored.
NOTABLES: Eric Hosmer has only six hits (all singles) in his last 40 at bats (.150 average) over his last 10 games. The Royals have won three of their last four games after winning tonight’s start of a nine-game road trip.