MLB: Twins stave off Royals’ ninth-inning comeback

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Trevor Larnach hit a three-run home run, Jose Miranda added a two-run shot and the Minnesota Twins escaped with a 6-5 win over the Kansas City Royals on Monday afternoon in Minneapolis.

Alex Kirilloff also drove in a run for Minnesota, which earned its fifth win in the past six games. The teams will meet again Tuesday night in the second contest of a four-game series.

Royals hitters Vinnie Pasquantino, Hunter Renfroe, Dairon Blanco and Maikel Garcia each had an RBI. Kansas City has lost back-to-back games after winning the previous eight in a row.

Twins right-hander Joe Ryan (4-3) allowed one run on four hits in seven innings. He walked none and struck out nine, which marked his second-most strikeouts of the season.

Royals right-hander Alec Marsh (4-2) allowed five runs on five hits in seven innings. He struck out seven with two walks.

Twins closer Jhoan Duran collected his seventh save despite a rough ninth inning. He entered the game with two outs in the ninth and Minnesota leading 6-2.

Duran promptly hit MJ Melendez with a pitch to load the bases. He then gave up back-to-back RBI infield singles to Blanco and Garcia, and a throwing error by Twins third baseman Willi Castro allowed another run to score as the Royals pulled within 6-5.

Duran then got Bobby Witt Jr. to ground out with runners on second and third to end the game.

The Twins grabbed a 2-0 lead in the bottom of the third. Edouard Julien hit a one-out single to left, and Miranda followed in the next at-bat with a 437-foot shot to center.

In the fifth, Larnach belted a three-run shot to make it 5-0. His 441-foot homer to center also scored Castro and Julien, both of whom reached on walks.

Kansas City got on the scoreboard with Pasquantino’s RBI single in the sixth.

Kirilloff responded for the Twins with an RBI single in the eighth to make it 6-1.

The Royals cut the deficit to 6-2 in the top of the ninth. Renfroe pulled a curveball to left for an RBI double that scored Salvador Perez, before Duran replaced fellow reliever Cole Sands to finish the game.

–Field Level Media

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