MINNEAPOLIS — Nelson Cruz homered twice, continuing his climb up the all-time leaderboard, and the Minnesota Twins beat the Kansas City Royals 4-1 on Monday night.
Devin Smeltzer (2-0) picked up the win in relief of opener Matt Wisler for Minnesota. Smeltzer allowed one hit in 2 2/3 innings while striking out three batters. The Twins won three of four games in the series after being swept by the Royals in Kansas City last week.
Rookie Kris Bubic (0-3) surrendered two runs on four hits and four walks in 4 1/3 innings for the Royals. Hunter Dozier homered in the ninth inning to end Minnesota's shutout bid.
Cruz supplied all the offense the Twins needed while continuing his assault on Kansas City pitching and the record books.
The 40-year-old slugger led off the fourth inning with a line drive that hit the facing of the second deck in left field. In the seventh, he connected for his eighth of the season into the bullpens in left-center field.
Cruz surpassed Duke Snider and tied Mark Teixeira with his 409th career homer, good for 55th all-time.
In his past 16 games against the Royals, Cruz is hitting .482 with 13 home runs and 26 RBIs.
Bubic had held up in his first two major league starts this season, but he’s now allowed seven runs over 9 1/3 in his past two starts.