Ryan McBroom’s homer lifts Royals to 3-2 win over Twins
Ryan McBroom hit a go-ahead homer in the sixth inning, the Kansas City pitching staff held the powerful Twins to just a pair of solo homers, and the Royals beat Minnesota 3-2 on Friday night.
Nick Heath and Nicky Lopez also drove in runs for the Royals, who have won two straight after a six-game slide.
Jakob Junis served up homers to Byron Buxton and Marwin Gonzalez before leaving with two outs in the fifth inning, and Greg Holland (2-0) led four relievers in holding down the Twins the rest of the way. Trevor Rosenthal retired the final three batters in order for his second save.
Matt Wisler (0-1) served up McBroom’s homer as Minnesota lost a one-run game for the second consecutive night.
The quintessential power-versus-pluck game played out through the first five innings.
The Twins, who came into the game fourth in the league in homers, got another when Buxton went deep for the second straight night leading off third. Gonzalez hit his over the center field fence with one down in the fourth.
The Royals, whose popgun offense came alive with 13 runs against the Cubs on Thursday, resorted to small-ball to coax across their first runs. Maikel Franco scored in the third after a double, sacrifice bunt from Lopez and a base hit by Heath, and Alex Gordon scored in the fifth after a single, Franco’s groundout and Lopez’s sharp single.
Whit Merrifield nearly broke the game open with a three-run shot later in the fifth, but Twins left fielder Nick Cave drifted back to the wall and made a leaping grab in front of the Minnesota bullpen to keep the game knotted 2-all.
The Royals finally got a long-ball of their own when McBroom hit the second of his career in the sixth.
The game was halted in the fifth inning for a sudden downpour that was over so quickly the grounds crew never fully got the tarp unrolled. In fact, most of the players never left the field before resuming after a 9-minute delay. The game pressed on the rest of the way despite constant thunder and lightning.
Before the game, the Royals reinstated RHP Jorge Lopez from the bereavement list and designated him for assignment. They also reinstated RHP Chance Adams from the injured list and optioned him to their alternate training site, and they transferred LHP Mike Montgomery (lat strain) and RHP Glenn Sparkman (right forearm strain) to the 60-day IL.
Royals: Heath (left hamstring strain) left in the fifth inning. Brett Phillips replaced him. … RF Hunter Dozier continues to progress at the club’s alternate site after returning from COVID-19. “He’s feeling good health-wise and I think it’s just that timing,” manager Mike Matheny said. “It just takes a little while.”
Twins: 3B Josh Donaldson (right calf strain) was place on the IL retroactive to Tuesday. He was hurt against the Indians on July 31. … 2B Luis Arraez (sore right knee) was out of the lineup for the second straight day.
Twins RHP Jake Odorizzi makes his season debut Saturday against his former team after missing the start of the season with a right intercostal strain. He will face Royals LHP Danny Duffy (0-2, 4.11 ERA).
“Is Jake going to go out there and throw 110 (pitches) in his first start? No,” Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said. “We’re just going to let him pitch and hopefully he can pitch us somewhere into the middle of the game.”