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Minnesota (18-37) «1060001008100
Kansas City (25-31)100010000291

Twins beat Royals, snap four-game losing streak

CBSSports.com wire reports
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Anthony Swarzak could be going back to Minnesota's bullpen after picking up his first victory in nearly two years.

Swarzak pitched six effecting innings, Michael Cuddyer drove in two runs and the Twins beat the Kansas City Royals 8-2 Thursday night.

The Twins snapped a four-game losing streak and won for the third time in 13 games.

Swarzak (1-2), who was making his third start after beginning the season in the minors and initially working in relief when he was recalled May 16, limited the Royals to seven hits and two runs. He last won on July 26, 2009.

Despite that success, Francisco Liriano will likely come off the disabled list and start Tuesday. When he does return, manager Ron Gardenhire said Swarzak would go back to the bullpen.

"I just want to pitch," Swarzak said. "Pitching is great. After spending all of last year in Triple-A that humbled me a little bit. I just want the ball. I don't care when it is or where it is. I've just got to get outs. I don't expect Liriano to get moved to the bullpen at all. He's a phenomenal pitcher. He's fun to watch."

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After taking a no-hitter into the eighth inning in his previous start against the Los Angeles Angels, Swarzak gave up a run on two hits and a walk in the first against the Royals.

"Swarzak hung in there." Gardenhire said. "He wasn't perfect by any means, but he battled through a lot. He was up in the zone an awful lot, but made pitches when he had to and got us deep into the game."

Swarzak threw 99 pitches against the Royals after 105 pitches against the Angels.

"I felt like I bounced back pretty well," Swarzak said. "I wasn't expecting to, but I did. I expected to be a little sore after not throwing too many pitches coming out of the bullpen and then throwing 100-plus pitches out of nowhere. I expected to be a little sore. I was for a couple of days."

Minnesota sent 10 men to the plate in a six-run third, scoring four unearned runs after Mike Aviles made a throwing error. Denard Span, Matt Tolbert and Rene Rivera had RBI singles and Cuddyer hit a run-scoring double. Justin Morneau scored on Aviles' error. Rivera scored on a wild pitch for the other run.

"Our offense had one big inning, which was huge, a lot of big hits," Gardenhire said. "We overcame a baserunning mistake which we haven't been doing. We overcame that and got a lot of big two-out hits."

Royals starter Sean O'Sullivan was pulled after 2 2/3 innings, retiring only eight of the 19 batters he faced. He gave up seven runs - three earned - on eight hits, two walks, a hit batter and a wild pitch.

"Sully battled his command," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "He threw some quality pitches in spurts, some fastballs that he was throwing downhill and then he threw some fastballs that were flat. We could have helped him out there, too (on defense). For the most part they just found some holes."

In his past four starts, O'Sullivan is 0-3 with a 13.25 ERA, allowing 51 base runners -- 39 hits, 10 walks and two hit batters -- and 30 runs, 26 earned, in 17 2/3 innings. O'Sullivan (2-5) was replaced by rookie right-hander Nate Adcock in the third.

Cuddyer also drove in a run in the first on a groundout. Span and Tolbert each had two hits and a RBI to pace the Twins' 10-hit attack.

Jeff Francoeur went 3 for 4 with two doubles and a triple and drove in both Kansas City runs. Francoeur leads the Royals with 32 RBI.

Joakim Soria pitched for the first time since being removed as the Royals closer after a blown save Monday. He retired all six batters he faced.

Notes

  • DH Jim Thome (strained left quadriceps) and OF Jason Kubel (sprained left foot) were placed on the 15-day disabled list, bringing the Twins' total to eight players on the DL.
  • The Twins promoted OF Ben Revere and INF Luke Hughes to take their roster spots.
  • After the game, the Twins optioned INF Trevor Plouffe to Triple-A Rochester and purchased the contract of OF-IF Brian Dinkelman from the Red Wings.
  • The Twins also transferred C Joe Mauer to the 60-day DL, but he is eligible to be activated June 12.
  • RHP Robinson Tejeda, whom the Royals designated for assignment May 26, accepted an outright assignment to Triple-A Omaha after clearing waivers.
  • John Lamb, a 20-year-old left-hander who is one of the Royals top pitching prospects, is scheduled to have Tommy John surgery Friday. Lamb was the Royals minor league pitcher of the year in 2010.
 
Copyright 2015 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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Anthony Swarzak, who started the season in the minors, works six effective innings to earn his first win. (US Presswire)
Anthony Swarzak, who started the season in the minors, works six effective innings to earn his first win. (US Presswire)

Players of the Game
Kansas City

J. Francoeur
AB 4
R 0
H 3
HR 0
RBI 2
Minnesota

M. Cuddyer
AB 5
R 0
H 1
HR 0
RBI 2
 

Related Video

Minnesota Twins
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Denard Span, CF5121004 .297
Alexi Casilla, 2B4110101 .231
Justin Morneau, DH5110001 .242
Michael Cuddyer, 1B5012000 .260
Danny Valencia, 3B5101011 .227
Delmon Young, LF4210100 .214
Ben Revere, RF3011112 .250
Rene Rivera, C3111102 .225
Matt Tolbert, SS3121001 .185
Totals37810742  
Batting
2B - Michael Cuddyer (6, O'Sullivan), Ben Revere (1, Adcock), Matt Tolbert (5, Adcock)
RBI - Denard Span (13), Michael Cuddyer 2 (15), Danny Valencia (26), Ben Revere (1), Rene Rivera (3), Matt Tolbert (4)
2-OUT RBI - Denard Span (5), Rene Rivera (1), Matt Tolbert (1)
SB - Ben Revere (3, 2nd base off O'Sullivan/Treanor)
CS - Michael Cuddyer (1, 3rd base by O'Sullivan/Treanor)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Tolbert-Casilla-Cuddyer
Minnesota Twins
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Anthony Swarzak (W,1-2) 6722210 3.43
Jose Mijares 1000110 5.40
Alex Burnett 1100000 6.32
Matt Capps 1100010 4.68
Pitches-Strikes - Anthony Swarzak 99-60, Jose Mijares 11-6, Alex Burnett 9-8, Matt Capps 11-9
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Anthony Swarzak 8-9, Jose Mijares 1-0, Matt Capps 2-0
Batters Faced - Anthony Swarzak 27, Jose Mijares 3, Alex Burnett 4, Matt Capps 4
Kansas City Royals
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Alex Gordon, LF5020010 .288
Melky Cabrera, CF4110102 .268
Eric Hosmer, 1B4110013 .290
Jeff Francoeur, RF4032001 .286
Billy Butler, DH3000102 .292
Wilson Betemit, 3B4010003 .305
Mike Aviles, 2B4000002 .230
Matt Treanor, C3010110 .216
Alcides Escobar, SS4000003 .208
Totals3529233  
Batting
2B - Melky Cabrera (13, Swarzak), Jeff Francoeur 2 (15, Swarzak, Swarzak)
3B - Jeff Francoeur (2, Burnett)
RBI - Jeff Francoeur 2 (34)
2-OUT RBI - Jeff Francoeur 2 (14)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
E - Mike Aviles (7, Throwing)
Kansas City Royals
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Sean O'Sullivan (L,2-5) 2.2873210 6.92
Nate Adcock 4.1211210 3.77
Joakim Soria 2000000 6.00
HBP - Tolbert (by Sean O'Sullivan)
WP - Sean O'Sullivan (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Sean O'Sullivan 69-44, Nate Adcock 66-37, Joakim Soria 19-15
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Sean O'Sullivan 4-3, Nate Adcock 11-1, Joakim Soria 3-3
Batters Faced - Sean O'Sullivan 19, Nate Adcock 17, Joakim Soria 6
Game Information
Attendance - 14584
Game Time - 2:49
Temperature - 85
Umpires - Home - Mike Winters, First Base - Mike Everitt, Second Base - Chris Guccione, Third Base - Cory Blaser