Kansas City, MO (Sports Network) - Josh Willingham singled in the go-ahead run
in the top of the 11th inning, propelling the Twins to a 2-1 victory over the
Royals in the opener of a three-game set Friday at Kauffman Stadium.
After the Twins squandered a leadoff triple in the 10th, Joe Mauer doubled to
start the 11th off Royals reliever Jonathan Broxton (1-2) and Willingham
followed with a single through the right side of the infield to plate Mauer
and give the Twins a one-run lead.
Glen Perkins fired a scoreless bottom of the 11th to nail down his fifth save
of the year as the Twins won for just the third time in eight games since the
Casey Fien (1-0) earned the victory after tossing a pair of perfect innings in
relief. Dustin Mastroianni added a solo homer in the victory.
Mastroianni's second homer of the season gave the Twins a 1-0 lead in the
second before the Kansas City offense got things going in the seventh as Eric
Hosmer singled to start the frame.
Minnesota starter Nick Blackburn retired the next two Royals, but Yuniesky
Betancourt came through with a two-out double to left to plate Hosmer and knot
the game at 1-1.
Mastroianni stroked a leadoff triple off Greg Holland in the top of the 10th,
but Holland got Alexi Casilla to groundout to shortstop before fanning Ben
Revere and Jamey Carroll to escape the inning unscathed.
Kansas City threatened in the bottom of the 11th as Alcides Escobar doubled to
start the frame and moved to third on Billy Butler's fly out to right.
Mike Moustakas then grounded sharply to second baseman Casilla, who fired home
to cut down Escobar at the plate for the second out.
Perkins then induced a groundout from Jarrod Dyson to end the game and send
the Royals to their ninth loss in their last 11 games.
Blackburn allowed just one run on seven hits with two strikeouts over 6 2/3
innings...Royals starter Luke Hochevar was charged for one run on five hits
with six strikeouts over seven frames...Minnesota third baseman Trevor Plouffe
finished 0-for-3 to snap a career-high 17-game hit-streak. He left the game in
the ninth inning with an injured hand...The Royals traded left-hander Jonathan
Sanchez to the Colorado Rockies on Friday for righty Jeremy Guthrie.
The Sports Network