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5-run 4th Inning Leads Royals Past Twins

Updated: 04/21/2014 1:39 PM
Created: 04/19/2014 4:26 PM KSTP.com

Bruce Chen labored through five innings before the Kansas City Royals' bullpen took over, shutting down the Minnesota Twins the rest of the way in a 5-4 victory Saturday.

The Royals have won five straight after getting swept last weekend in Minnesota.

Chen (1-1) allowed all four runs on eight hits and four walks, but the damage could have been a whole lot worse. The crafty left-hander twice walked the bases loaded, and his only clean inning was the first, when Brian Dozier hit a fly out that nearly left the park.

Still, a five-run fourth inning off Kevin Correia (1-1) staked Chen to a lead, and his bullpen made it stand up on a sun-splashed afternoon.

Danny Duffy tossed two scoreless innings, and Wade Davis navigated a perfect eighth before turning the game over to All-Star closer Greg Holland. He set down the top of the Minnesota lineup in order for his sixth save in as many chances.

The Royals improved to 9-0 when scoring at least four runs this season. They're 0-7 when they score three runs or fewer.

Kurt Suzuki homered and drove in three runs for the Twins, and Aaron Hicks also drove in a run. But it wasn't enough for Correia, who wound up allowing all five runs, four of them earned.

The Twins didn't help him much with their shaky defense.

Left-fielder Jason Kubel lost a fly ball in the glaring sun and it fell for a double in the second inning. Then in the fourth, right fielder Chris Colabello misplayed a fly off the bat of Billy Butler that ended up at the warning track and put runners on second and third.

That was the start of the Royals' game-changing charge.

Mike Moustakas followed with a sacrifice fly and Justin Maxwell added an RBI single to tie the game. Alcides Escobar was plunked on the elbow, and Nori Aoki followed with a go-ahead single.

Moments later, Escobar and Aoki took off on a double steal, and Twins catcher Josmil Pinto threw the ball into left field, allowing both runners to advance and making it 4-2. Omar Infante added a single to cap the five-run inning and give Kansas City a comfy cushion.

The Twins got two runs back on Suzuki's single in the fifth, but Chen managed to get Hicks to ground out with a pair of runners on board to preserve his one-run lead.

NOTES: RHP Yordano Ventura pitches the series finale Sunday for Kansas City. RHP Phil Hughes is on the mound for Minnesota. ... Hicks collided with Colabello while making a catch at the wall in the fifth inning. Both players were OK. ... Twins 1B Joe Mauer, celebrating his 31st birthday, delivered a bunt single and scored in the fifth. ... Royals manager Ned Yost expects OF Jarrod Dyson (bereavement list) to return Monday.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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