Royals catcher Salvador Perez came into Tuesday’s game with 28 career home runs against the Twins, and by the time the game was over, he had tacked on two more — one early in the game and one that tied it at 3-3 — then Hunter Dozier teed off to make it a 4-3 win in Game 1 of the three-game series in Kansas City.
The Twins had their chances, scoring three runs on nine hits, but once again they struggled with runners in scoring position, going 3-for-11 and left nine men on base.
They also got no help from reliever Tyler Duffey who already has two blown saves and two losses and a 9.00 ERA after he gave up the tying and go-ahead home runs in the sixth inning.
Chris Paddack gets the ball Wednesday.
-The Twins are 4-7.
-Lest we forget, the Twins beat Boston 8-3 on Monday to earn a split of the four-game series. Starting pitcher Dylan Bundy looked good, allowing one run over five-plus innings to improve to 2-0 with a 0.87 ERA.
-Byron Buxton still hasn’t returned to the lineup.
-The Twins also got off to a slow start in April 1988, finishing the month at 8-13. During the month, they lost at home to the Yankees 7-6 in 10 innings and the Yanks’ Claudell Washington hit the 10,000th home run in Yankees history.
Sweet Music went eight innings, then handed the ball to closer Jeff Reardon, who took the loss.
“He’s not superman,” Twins manager Tom Kelly said of Reardon to the Star Tribune. “He’s going to have good days and he’s going to have bad days just like anybody else. It wasn’t what you’d call his day. But he’s going to have more good days than bad days, that’s for sure.”
There is hope for slow-starting Twins teams. After the 8-13 start in 1988, the Twins went on to win 91 games and finished second to the Oakland A’s in the AL West division. The Twins would have won the division if not for the A’s, who exploded for 104 wins and won the division by 13 games. Of course, that was a year after the World Series win and the Twins had a pretty good team, including pitcher Frank Viola who went on to win the AL Cy Young award with a 24-7 record.