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Twins lose bruising game to Royals

Kansas City snaps its 7-game losing streak to Minnesota.

MLB: Minnesota Twins at Kansas City Royals
Minnesota Twins second baseman Nick Gordon is tagged out at third base Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2022, by Kansas City Royals third baseman Nate Eaton in the fifth inning at Kauffman Stadium.
Jay Biggerstaff / USA Today Sports
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Minnesota Twins suffered another loss on Tuesday and this one, well it might have been one of the most painful of the season.

Literally.

A day after seeing both members of their battery — Sonny Gray and Sandy Leon — leave with injuries on Monday in Cleveland, the banged-up Twins saw their injury woes worsen in a 5-4 loss to the Royals on Tuesday at Kauffman Stadium.

Shortstop Carlos Correa, who has not attempted to steal a base since 2019 for fear of injury, was thrown out on his way to second in the seventh inning and stayed down for a couple minutes, prompting a team trainer and manager Rocco Baldelli to come out and check on him.

MLB: Minnesota Twins at Kansas City Royals
Minnesota Twins right fielder Matt Wallner hits an RBI double against the Kansas City Royals in the second inning Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2022, in Kansas City, Missouri.
Jay Biggerstaff / USA Today Sports

Correa, who was limping just after, stayed in the game, throwing out a runner trying to score at the plate in the bottom of that inning. The Royals would score the go-ahead run later that inning, with Bobby Witt Jr. coming around to score on a Salvador Perez double to center.

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An inning later, Gio Urshela and Gary Sanchez were both hit with pitches by Royals reliever Jose Cuas. Both were lifted for pinch runners, an opportunity the Twins were unable to capitalize on.

MORE MINNESOTA TWINS COVERAGE:
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The Twins led the Central division for 108 days during the season. The last came on Sept. 4, when they pulled back into a tie with the Guardians atop the division. They finished the season in third place with a 78-84 record, 14 games behind Cleveland and three behind Chicago.
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Twins president of baseball operations Derek Falvey and general manager Thad Levine have some heavy lifting ahead of them. The first task is deciding whether to offer Carlos Correa a long-term contract.
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Correa, who played in 136 games in 2022, finished his year hitting .291 with a .834 OPS. His 139 OPS+ (100 is league average) is the second-highest in his career. His 5.4 bWAR (Wins Above Replacement per Baseball Reference) leads the Twins, and he quickly became a leader within the Twins’ clubhouse.
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The infielder joined an exclusive club Wednesday, becoming the fifth Twins player to win an American League batting title, joining Rod Carew (seven times), Joe Mauer (three), Tony Oliva (three) and Kirby Puckett.
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Duran, 24, entered Tuesday with a 4.6 Win Probability Added, a statistic that credits a player for how much his appearance impacted his team’s chance of winning, per Baseball Reference.
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Minnesota hitter goes 1-for-4 and maintains lead on Judge
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The White Sox rallied against Twins reliever Griffin Jax, who fell to 7-4 after yielding one run on two hits in the seventh.
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Arraez entered Monday’s play with a .315 to .311 edge over New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge, who would win the first Triple Crown since 2012 if he surpassed the Minnesota Twins’ infielder.
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With three games remaining for the Twins (and four for the Yankees), Twins infielder Luis Arrraez and New York Yankees slugger Aaron Judge remain locked in a tight race for the American League batting title.
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While the day started inauspiciously — Twins fielders committed three errors in the first inning — the rookie settled in nicely, throwing five innings and allowing just three hits in the Twins’ 5-2 loss to the Tigers (65-93) in the series finale at Comerica Park, a game in which the Twins (77-82) managed just three hits of their own.

Those two weren’t the only players lifted early.

Baldelli also removed Gilberto Celestino from the game in the fourth inning in an apparent effort to send a message to the young outfielder. Celestino was unhappy when a 3-1 pitch that appeared out of the zone was called a ball. Celestino, who had dropped his bat to take a walk, raised his palms up in frustration to home plate umpire Malachi Moore before picking it up again. He then grounded out and walked slowly back to the dugout, after which he was lifted from the game.

The Twins finished the day with 12 hits, scoring first in the second inning on a Matt Wallner RBI double and a two-run Correa single.

MLB: Minnesota Twins at Kansas City Royals
Minnesota Twins starter Dylan Bundy pitches against the Kansas City Royals on Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2022, at Kauffman Stadium. Bundy pitched 4 2/3 innings, giving up four runs, but took a no-decision on the game.
Jay Biggerstaff / USA Today Sports

But the Royals chipped away at that lead — and eventually took one of their own — in the fifth inning against starter Dylan Bundy, who gave up four runs in 4⅔ innings. After the Twins tied it once more in the sixth, the Royals scored once more against Michael Fulmer, snapping their seven-game losing streak to Minnesota.

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Related Topics: MINNESOTA TWINS
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