(Sports Network) – Delmon Young hit the go-ahead homer in the seventh and added an RBI single in the ninth, as the American League Central champion Twins snapped a five-game skid with a 4-2 win over the Kansas City Royals.
Drew Butera and Alexi Casilla each had an RBI for the Twins, who avoided their first six-game skid since May 15-20, 2009. Minnesota also steered clear of being swept in back-to-back series for the first time since July 8-13, 2003.
Scott Baker went five innings in the start, allowing two runs on six hits. He also struck out nine and walked four. Matt Guerrier (5-7) pitched 1 2/3 scoreless frames to pick up the win.
Minnesota (93-65) is going for the best record in the American League. The AL East-leading Rays have a record of 94-64.
Kila Ka’aihue hit a solo homer for the Royals, who got an RBI from Lucas May. Luke Hochevar gave up two runs on seven hits over six frames. Gil Meche (0-5) allowed the homer to Young to suffer the loss.
Trailing 2-0, Minnesota scored a pair of runs in the sixth to tie the game. Michael Cuddyer singled, Danny Valencia singled, and Jason Repko walked to load the bases with one out. Butera then hit an RBI single to left. The tying run crossed the plate when Casilla grounded into a fielder’s choice.
Young’s homer to left off Meche in the seventh put the Twins ahead, 3-2.
With a man on second and one out in the ninth, Young hit an RBI single up the middle to give Minnesota a 4-2 edge.
Brian Fuentes, who recorded the final out in the seventh, pitched a scoreless eighth and Matt Capps got out of a first-and-second situation in the ninth to record his 16th save.
The Royals got on the board in the second inning. Ka’aihue led off the frame with a homer to right-center field. Alex Gordon walked and Yuniesky Betancourt doubled to put men on second and third with one out. May then hit an RBI single. Jai Miller and Jarrod Dyson struck out, but not before Kansas City took a 2-0 lead.
Minnesota had trouble with runners in scoring position early on, as they stranded at least two men on base in the second, third, and fourth frames.
The Royals loaded the bases with two outs in the fifth, but Betancourt flied out.
The Twins went 1-5 on their final road trip of the year…Minnesota won the season series with Kansas City, 13-5…Minnesota, which went 41-40 on the road this year, will finish the regular season with four home games against Toronto…The Royals will end the season with four contests versus the Rays.