Nelson Cruz hit a two-run homer and the Minnesota Twins beat the Kansas City Royals 4-2 Saturday in the first game of a doubleheader.
Tyler Duffey (1-0) took the win with a perfect inning, relieving Jake Odorizzi. Taylor Roberts made his fifth save in six chances for Minnesota, which was swept in Kansas City last week.
Gabe Speier (0-1) allowed a run and got a pair of outs for the Royals. Ian Kennedy kicked off the encounter and resolved two chapters, marking his first opening since September 28, 2018.
Odorizzi was in tune at the beginning of his second start of the season after suffering back problems. He did not allow a hit until Salvador Pérez singled with two outs in the fourth inning.
In the match, Odorizzi struck out six. But the Twins hurt him.
Ryan McBroom doubled to the right-field corner to start the fifth inning. The umpires originally called a foul, but the video replay showed the ball landing on good ground, just as Max Kepler slid to catch it.
Kepler threw the ball into the empty box, but Kansas City challenged the play and McBroom anchored at second. Maikel Franco followed with his fifth home run of the season, ending Odorizzi’s performance.
Cruz hit a long home run in the third inning to reach five for the season and 406 for his career. He’s one behind Duke Snider, who ranks 56th on the all-time list.
For the Royals, Cuban Jorge Soler 3-0. The Venezuelan Pérez 3-1. The Dominicans Franco 3-2 with one scored and two RBIs, Adalberto Mondesí 2-0.
For the Twins, the Dominicans Jorge Polanco 3-2 with one scored, Cruz 3-2 with two runs scored and two produced, Miguel Sanó 2-1 with one scored. Puerto Rican Eddie Rosario 3-1 with a RBI. Venezuelans Marwin González 3-0, Luis Arráez 3-2.