Sano homers, Twins beat Royals 8-5 to snap 4-game skid
After extending his hitting streak against Kansas City to 15 games, Sano is batting .373 with six home runs and 26 RBIs during that stretch.
”This is the ballpark (where) I realized my dreams,” said Sano, who made his major league debut at Kauffman Stadium on July 2, 2015, and went 6 for 15 in the series. ”My dreams came true when I started in the major leagues and it’s good to me.”
”Since it was 1-1, I thought I could catch him looking for a slider and maybe get a fastball fouled off or popped up, but he was on it and he got ahold of it,” Junis said. ”Looking back, maybe I should have thrown a slider either way.”
Sano’s home run was just out of the reach of Jon Jay leaping at the wall.
”I know the ball went deep, but I didn’t think it was a homer,” Sano said. ”I ran the bases normal. … If they go, they go. I’ll take it.”
Lance Lynn (3-4) pitched six effective innings to win his second consecutive start after a dreadful stretch in his first season with the Twins.
”Early on this season the stuff was there, the location wasn’t,” said Lynn, who has lowered his ERA from 7.47 to 5.94 in his past two outings.
Lynn allowed two runs and six hits. He’s given up two runs and 11 hits over 12 2/3 innings in his last two games.
The right-hander worked out of a bases-loaded, one-out jam in the second by striking out Alcides Escobar and retiring Ramon Torres on a grounder. The Royals went 4 for 19 with runners in scoring position and stranded 12 overall.
Jay had four hits for Kansas City, including three doubles, to extend his hitting streak to 10 games.
”We had a lot of opportunities and we just couldn’t get that big hit,” he said.
Junis (5-4) permitted three runs on six hits and walked a career-high four. He struck out seven.
Kansas City got two runs in the eighth. Zach Duke’s throwing error on Jay’s bunt single allowed Escobar to score. Merrifield’s single knocked in Torres with the second run.
NOT SO SWEET AT HOME
The Royals have lost 19 of 26 at Kauffman Stadium.
Twins: Claimed INF Taylor Motter off waivers from Seattle. Motter has a .197 batting average in 132 games over three major league seasons with the Mariners and Rays. He will report to Triple-A Rochester.
Royals: RHP Scott Barlow was recalled from Triple-A Omaha, where he was 1-1 with a 3.94 ERA in seven games. LHP Eric Stout, who yielded two homers and three runs in one-third of an inning Sunday at Texas, was optioned to Omaha.
Twins: RHP Ervin Santana (right middle finger surgery) will make his second minor league rehab start Tuesday for Class A Fort Myers. … 1B Joe Mauer (neck strain) has been taking batting practice and grounders at Target Field. ”He hasn’t had any setbacks,” manager Paul Molitor said. ”We don’t want to get too excited about the potential of him being ready sooner than later.” Mauer could be activated Thursday when the Twins return home.
Royals: LHP Eric Skoglund (Grade 1 UCL strain) was relieved after an MRI revealed he won’t need Tommy John surgery. ”They said the UCL looks strong, it was just the fluid buildup,” Skoglund said. ”It’s exciting news that nothing was going on with the UCL. Just kind of get strong now in that area and let that fluid get out and get back to work. I was freaking out when I was in Texas. It wasn’t a good feeling, especially when I found out (surgery) was a possibility.”
Twins: RHP Kyle Gibson, a Missouri product, is 6-4 with a 3.46 ERA in 16 career starts against the Royals.
Royals: LHP Danny Duffy is coming off his best outing of the year, when he allowed one run in a season-high 7 2/3 innings to beat the Rangers.
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