Kansas City trips up Minnesota
MINNEAPOLIS — The Kansas City Royals and Minnesota Twins traded punches at Target Field on Wednesday night, until the Royals finally knocked out the home team for a 4-3 win.
The streaking Royals, winners of eight straight, banged out 13 hits on the night to take the first two games of the three-game series.
The Royals broke a 2-2 tie with two runs in the seventh inning. Alex Gordon hit a two-out triple to center, and he scored when Eric Hosmer hit a grounder up the middle that Pedro Florimon could not handle. Florimon was charged with an error.
Hosmer then stole second and scored on Billy Butler’s single up the middle.
The Twins got a run back when Ryan Doumit and Trevor Plouffe began the eighth with back-to-back doubles off Kelvin Herrera. Aaron Crow got the last two outs of the inning, and Greg Holland threw a scoreless ninth to pick up his 28th save of the season.
Kansas City starter Jeremy Guthrie (11-7) pitched six innings, allowing two runs on six hits with two walks and five strikeouts.
Twins starter Kevin Correia gave up 10 hits in his six innings, but he only allowed two runs. Correia struck out three without walking a batter. He got rocked but stayed on his feet and kept the Twins in the game.
Down 2-1, the Twins evened the score in the sixth by hitting singles on three consecutive pitches. Plouffe then swung at the next pitch, hit an infield grounder and forced Joe Mauer out at home, but Chris Herrmann walked to knock in a run.
The Royals scored in the second inning when the speedy David Lough stretched a shot to the gap into a double. He scored easily on Miguel Tejada’s single to right for a 1-0 lead.
The Royals scored another run in the third when Gordon led off with a single. He moved to third on Eric Hosmer’s double to left-center and scored on Butler’s sacrifice fly. Hosmer tried to take third on the play and was thrown out on a strong throw by Twins right fielder Herrmann.
In addition to the outfield assist, the Twins played their typical tough defense, catching Lough on a steal attempt and Florimon getting a tough out deep behind second base.
Florimon got the Twins’ third hit of the game in the fifth when he hit his seventh home run of the season to score the team’s first run.
Notes: Doumit was selected the Twins’ representative for the 2013 Heart and Hustle award, voted on by the MLB Players Alumni Association. ... During the winning streak, the Royals pitching staff has allowed just 12 earned runs in 75 innings for a league-best 1.44 ERA in that span. ... The Twins have committed just 45 errors this season, the fourth-lowest total in the majors.