MINNEAPOLIS -- Rookie J.P. Howell pitched five hitless innings before he
was pulled and Angel Berroa homered to lead the
Andrew Sisco, Ambiorix Burgos and Jeremy Affeldt completed the three-hitter for the Royals, who snapped a five-game road losing streak. Two of their four shutouts this season have come against Minnesota.
The Twins were blanked for the 10th time this season and fell to .500 for the first time since they were 3-3 on April 10.
Howell struck out seven and walked three before he was relieved by Sisco to start the sixth. Sisco promptly gave up a single to Brent Abernathy leading off, followed by Joe Mauer's single.
Howell (3-5) had thrown 97 pitches, including 56 for strikes, when he was lifted.
Scott Baker (2-3) allowed five runs and six hits in five innings. He walked two and struck out three.
Berroa led off the third with a home run, his 11th, to give Kansas City the lead. The Royals added three more runs in the fourth.
Mike Sweeney and Matt Stairs started the inning with consecutive singles. After Emil Brown struck out, Mark Teahen singled up the middle to make it 2-0. Berroa then popped out before John Buck hit a two-run double down the right-field line to make it 4-0.
Stairs hit a sacrifice fly in the fifth to make it 5-0.
The Twins loaded the bases in the third without getting a hit, before Howell got Mauer to ground out and end the threat.
Howell has won two straight decisions for the first time in his career. ... Sweeney was back in the lineup as the designated hitter after missing four games because of lower back pain. ... Royals LF Terrence Long sat out due to a twisted left knee. ... The Twins are guaranteed to have their first losing September since 2001. ... Minnesota starters fell to 4-11 with a 5.15 ERA this month.