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Kansas City at Minnesota

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Kansas City (3-1)210000000380
Minnesota (2-3) «10210000x4100

Twins 4, Royals 3

CBSSports.com wire reports
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MINNEAPOLIS -- The Minnesota Twins' second victory of the season came at a hefty price.

Carlos Gomez went 3-for-4 with a double and two stolen bases, but star right fielder Michael Cuddyer was placed on the 15-day disabled list with a dislocated right index finger in Minnesota's 4-3 victory over Kansas City on Friday night, the Royals' first loss of the season.

Scott Baker (1-0) gave up three runs on seven hits in 6 2/3 innings and Joe Nathan picked up his second save, but the postgame mood was noticeably sullen with the news on Cuddyer.

He was going from first to third on a single by Justin Morneau in the third inning when he collided awkwardly with Alex Gordon on a headfirst slide into third base.

Cuddyer was 2-for-2 in the game, but needed stitches to close the gash on his finger and could be on the bench for a while.

"He's swinging the bat very well. He's very important in the outfield and he's our No. 3 hitter, which is huge," Morneau said. "Hopefully he's not out for too long."

Billy Butler had two hits and an RBI for the Royals (3-1), who lost a little momentum after a surprising sweep of the big-money Tigers in Detroit to start the season.

The perennially rebuilding Royals entered the night as the last unbeaten team in the majors and were three games over .500 for the first time since the end of the 2003 season.

"Well, the undefeated season is over I guess," first-year manager Trey Hillman said with a shrug. "But we'll line up again tomorrow."

The struggling Twins offense was able to get just enough against John Bale (0-1), who was making his first major-league start since Sept. 18, 2003, when he was with Cincinnati. He played in Japan for three seasons before signing with Kansas City last year, when he spent the first 89 games on the disabled list.

He was following in some big footsteps after Gil Meche, Brian Bannister and Zack Greinke shut down the heavy hitters in Motown to start the season.

Bale, the brother-in-law of Tampa Bay Lightning star Vincent LeCavalier, gave up four runs on 10 hits in 6 1/3 innings.

"Definitely excited about being back in the rotation," Bale said. "Hope to come back strong next week and give the team a chance to win."

His counterpart, Baker (1-0), endured his own frustrations this spring when he missed time because of a sore shoulder and the flu at camp.

"It was a tough spring training for me," Baker said. "I felt like I persevered through it."

The Royals worked him into deep counts and fouled off plenty of offerings, scoring three runs and running Baker's pitch count to 40 after two innings. But the right-hander settled down and retired 11 straight hitters, needing just six pitches to get through the third.

"His first start was fantastic," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "He had some quick innings as it went along and a couple long ones early, but he got through them. He got deep into the game and the bullpen did the rest."

After scoring just eight runs while losing three of four to the Angels to open the season, the Twins' bats came through on Friday night.

Morneau broke an 0-for-13 slump to start the year with an RBI single in the third, making it 3-2. Mike Lamb led off the fourth with a double and scored on a squeeze play by Adam Everett to take the lead for good.

Though they were happy to snap a three-game losing streak, the Twins were more concerned about Cuddyer, a clubhouse pillar who took over Torii Hunter's locker after the beloved center fielder signed with the Angels.

"Losing a guy that's in the middle of our lineup and is the heart of our order," second baseman Matt Tolbert said, "that's tough."

Notes

Tolbert started for Brendan Harris, who sat out the game because of illness. ... Plate umpire CB Bucknor was stunned momentarily in the sixth when Royals 2B Mark Grudzielanek fouled a ball straight back that caught Bucknor in the mask. He stayed in the game. ... Grudzielanek had two more hits and is 8-for-16 this season.

 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
 
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Players of the Game
Kansas City

B. Butler
AB 4
R 0
H 2
HR 0
RBI 1
Minnesota

J. Mauer
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 1
 
Kansas City Royals
Joey Gathright, CF4110011 .235
Mark Grudzielanek, 2B4120010 .500
Alex Gordon, 3B4000003 .167
Jose Guillen, RF4001001 .125
Billy Butler, DH4021000 .353
    Esteban German, PR-DH0000000 .000
Mark Teahen, LF4110011 .333
Ross Gload, 1B3010001 .357
John Buck, C3011001 .200
Tony Pena, SS2000011 .067
   a- Alberto Callaspo, PH-SS1000000 .000
Totals3338304  
a-grounded out for Pena in the 8th
Batting
2B - Mark Teahen (1, Baker)
RBI - Jose Guillen (3), Billy Butler (3), John Buck (2)
2-OUT RBI - Billy Butler (3)
SB - Joey Gathright (2, 2nd base off Baker/Mauer)
Team LOB - 3
Fielding
DP - Pena-Grudzielanek-Gload, Bale-Pena-Gload
Kansas City Royals
John Bale (L,0-1) 6.11044120 5.68
Jimmy Gobble 1000030 0.00
Ramon Ramirez 0.2000010 0.00
Pitches-Strikes - John Bale 95-56, Jimmy Gobble 17-10, Ramon Ramirez 8-6
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - John Bale 11-4
Batters Faced - John Bale 28, Jimmy Gobble 3, Ramon Ramirez 2
Minnesota Twins
Carlos Gomez, CF4130000 .450
Joe Mauer, C4121012 .375
Michael Cuddyer, RF2020000 .278
    Jason Kubel, PR-RF1100111 .300
Justin Morneau, 1B4011012 .063
Delmon Young, LF4001001 .316
Craig Monroe, DH4000031 .000
Mike Lamb, 3B3110000 .143
    Nick Punto, 3B0000000 .333
Matt Tolbert, 2B2010000 .400
Adam Everett, SS2001001 .200
Totals30410416  
Batting
2B - Carlos Gomez (2, Bale), Mike Lamb (1, Bale)
SH - Matt Tolbert (1), Adam Everett (1)
RBI - Joe Mauer (4), Justin Morneau (2), Delmon Young (1), Adam Everett (2)
SB - Carlos Gomez 2 (4, 2nd base off Bale/Buck, 2nd base off Bale/Buck)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Carlos Gomez 1
DP - Tolbert-Morneau
Minnesota Twins
Scott Baker (W,1-0) 6.2733020 4.05
Pat Neshek (H,2) 1.1000010 0.00
Joe Nathan (S,2) 1100010 0.00
Pitches-Strikes - Scott Baker 84-62, Pat Neshek 11-9, Joe Nathan 20-12
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Scott Baker 6-10, Pat Neshek 2-1, Joe Nathan 1-1
Batters Faced - Scott Baker 25, Pat Neshek 4, Joe Nathan 4
Game Information
Attendance - 21847
Game Time - 2:42
Temperature - 69
Umpires - Home - C.B. Bucknor, First Base - Joe West, Second Base - Ed Rapuano, Third Base - Ed Hickox