Sonny Gray pitched six strong innings and Byron Buxton blasted a three-run homer as the Minnesota Twins cruised to an 8-4 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Sunday in Minneapolis
Nick Gordon and Christian Vazquez each had two RBIs for Minnesota, which took three of four from the Royals and have won six of its last eight games overall. The Twins held a commanding 8-0 lead after sending 12 batters to the plate and scoring seven runs in the third inning
Kansas City went 2-for-13 with runners in scoring position and concluded its 10-game road trip with a 3-7 mark. Brady Singer (2-3) allowed eight runs on five hits over 2 2/3 innings. He walked three and struck out five.
Gray (4-0) lowered his ERA to 0.77 after giving up one run on five hits with one walk and seven strikeouts. The right-hander has allowed just three runs across 35 innings in his six starts this season. Jhoan Duran retired the only batter he faced with two runners on in the ninth for his sixth save.
The Twins claimed an early lead in the second inning when Buxton delivered a leadoff double, moved to third on Joey Gallo's fly out, and scored on Gordon's safety squeeze
Buxton began the Twins' third-inning onslaught with a three-run homer to the third deck in left field. The two-out blast was Buxton's fifth homer in his last eight games
After the next two batters reached base, Gordon and Willi Castro followed with run-scoring singles. Singer was relieved by Josh Staumont, who yielded Vazquez's two-run single before striking out the next two batters to end the inning.
Kansas City pushed a run across in the sixth when Edward Olivares' groundout scored Vinnie Pasquantino, who doubled to begin the inning. Olivares singled in the second inning to extend his hitting streak to nine games, tying a career high.
Emilio Pagan relieved Gray to begin the seventh and allowed a run when Jackie Bradley Jr. doubled with one out and scored after Matt Duffy's ground ball to second baseman Jorge Polanco was misplayed.
The Royals rallied with two outs in the ninth on Pasquantino's two-run single against Josh Winder. Kansas City had the tying run on-deck after MJ Melendez doubled, causing the Twins to call on Duran for the final out
--Field Level Media