Royals
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Jun 7, 2010 - 5:17 PM By MATT BEARDMORE STATS Writer

Kansas City (24-34) at Minnesota (33-24), 8:10 p.m. EDT

Injuries and illnesses keep piling up for the Minnesota Twins. A matchup with the Kansas City Royals and Zack Greinke could help manager Ron Gardenhire forget those woes.

Back from a sub-.500 trip, the AL Central-leading Twins open a nine-game homestand Tuesday night against the Royals.

Despite holding the biggest division lead in the majors at 3 1/2 games, Minnesota (33-24) is facing plenty of adversity. The middle infield combination of Orlando Hudson and J.J. Hardy could be placed on the disabled list prior to this series with left wrist injuries, and first baseman Justin Morneau has not started the last two games due to the flu.

"I need players," Gardenhire told the Twins' official website.

Right fielder Michael Cuddyer - second on the team with seven homers - is expected to return from the bereavement list as Minnesota looks to extend its season-high four-game home winning streak and improve to 19-9 at new Target Field.

Going for a sixth straight series win against Kansas City, the Twins will face Greinke (1-7, 3.60 ERA) as he tries to avoid matching his loss total from last year's AL Cy Young Award-winning season.

The right-hander walked a season-high five in a 10-3 loss in Minnesota on April 16, and has posted a 7.04 ERA while dropping each of his last three starts.

"The last month I haven't really been myself, I guess," said Greinke, who gave up four runs and a season-high 10 hits over six innings of Thursday's 5-4 loss to the Angels. "Everything looks tougher, like the hitters look better and the strike zone looks smaller. It just seems tougher out there at the moment."

It would also help if the Royals (24-34) gave Greinke more run support. Kansas City's .279 batting average is among the best in the AL, but Greinke is receiving among the league's lowest run support at 2.64.

"I still would like for Zack (Greinke) and (Luke) Hochevar to get some run support," the Royals' Brian Bannister said after picking up his fifth straight win in Sunday's 7-2 victory over Detroit. "They don't need to waste it all on me."

Greinke is 0-4 with a 2.48 ERA in six road starts.

Reigning AL batting champion Joe Mauer is batting .481 with five RBIs against Kansas City this season, but is 6 for 29 lifetime against Greinke. Morneau, the 2006 AL MVP has fared worse against him, going 5 for 26.

After going 3-4 in Seattle and Oakland, the Twins will give the ball to Kevin Slowey (6-3, 3.84) as he looks for his third win in five starts.

The right-hander suffered his first career loss in five starts versus Kansas City on April 25 when he allowed four runs and hits over 5 1-3 innings of the 4-3 defeat.

Slowey yielded a run and five hits over seven innings Wednesday against the Mariners, but didn't get a decision in the Twins' 2-1 loss in 10 innings.

"Slowey was tough," Seattle manager Don Wakamatsu said. "He threw cutters to both sides of the plate, and he was awfully tough on our hitters."

Minnesota is 4-2 against Kansas City this season.






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    Royals 3, Twins 7  FinalJun 9 1:36 AM


  • Twins 7, Royals 3 - FINAL
    KANSAS CITY ab r h rbi bb so lob avg
    S Podsednik lf 3 0 0 1 0 1 0 .288
    J Kendall c 4 0 0 0 0 1 1 .293
    D DeJesus rf 4 0 1 0 0 0 0 .306
    B Butler 1b 4 1 0 0 0 1 1 .325
    J Guillen dh 4 1 2 1 0 0 1 .251
    A Callaspo 3b 4 0 0 0 0 0 3 .277
    M Aviles 2

    Jun 8 10:58 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MIKE AVILES SCORED JOSE GUILLEN
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, M AVILES ON FIRST, 2 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 3
    MINNESOTA 7 TOP,9TH
    DUE UP FOR KANSAS CITY: M MAIER (.255, 1-FOR-3)

    Royals 3, Twins 7  Top 9, 0 OutsJun 8 10:50 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY JOSE GUILLEN SCORED BILLY BUTLER
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J GUILLEN ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 2
    MINNESOTA 7 TOP,9TH
    DUE UP FOR KANSAS CITY: A CALLASPO (.278, 0-FOR-3)

    Royals 2, Twins 7  Top 9, 0 OutsJun 8 10:48 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY SCOTT PODSEDNIK SCORED MITCH MAIER
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, Y BETANCOURT ON FIRST, 2 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 1
    MINNESOTA 7 TOP,8TH
    DUE UP FOR KANSAS CITY: J KENDALL (.294, 0-FOR-3)

    Royals 1, Twins 7  Top 8, 0 OutsJun 8 10:27 PM
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    Royals 0, Twins 7  Top 8, 0 OutsJun 8 10:24 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MATT TOLBERT SCORED DANNY VALENCIA
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, M TOLBERT ON FIRST, 2 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 0
    MINNESOTA 7 BOTTOM,6TH
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: J MAUER (.312, 1-FOR-3)

    Royals 0, Twins 7  Bot 6, 0 OutsJun 8 9:56 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY JASON KUBEL (7) TO RIGHT WITH 2 OUT IN THE
    5TH OFF ZACK GREINKE.
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 0, MINNESOTA 6
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: D YOUNG (.278, 1-FOR-2)

    Royals 0, Twins 6  Bot 5, 0 OutsJun 8 9:40 PM
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    Royals 0, Twins 5  Bot 5, 0 OutsJun 8 9:34 PM
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    Royals 0, Twins 5  Top 5, 0 OutsJun 8 9:23 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY DENARD SPAN SCORED DANNY VALENCIA AND DELMON
    YOUNG
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, D SPAN ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 0
    MINNESOTA 5 BOTTOM,4TH
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: M TOLBERT (.136, 0-FOR-1, BB)

    Royals 0, Twins 5  Bot 4, 0 OutsJun 8 9:19 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY JASON KUBEL SCORED MICHAEL CUDDYER AND JOE MAUER
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, J KUBEL ON SECOND, 2 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 0
    MINNESOTA 3 BOTTOM,1ST
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: D YOUNG (.275, 6 HR, 34 RBI)

    Royals 0, Twins 3  Bot 1, 0 OutsJun 8 8:31 PM


  • AL
    AT MINNESOTA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MICHAEL CUDDYER SCORED MATT TOLBERT
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, M CUDDYER ON FIRST, J MAUER ON SECOND, 2 OUTS
    CURRENT SCORE: KANSAS CITY 0
    MINNESOTA 1 BOTTOM,1ST
    DUE UP FOR MINNESOTA: J KUBEL (.225, 6 HR, 31 RBI)

    Royals 0, Twins 1  Bot 1, 0 OutsJun 8 8:28 PM
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    Royals vs. TwinsMay 25 2:00 AM