Salvador Perez, Danny Duffy help Kansas City Royals trounce Minnesota Twins

May 1, 2021; Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA; Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Danny Duffy (30) throws a pitch during the second inning against the Minnesota Twins at Target Field. Mandatory Credit: Jeffrey Becker-USA TODAY Sports

Salvador Perez became the all-time home run leader among visiting players at Target Field as the Kansas City Royals crushed the Twins 11-3 Saturday in Minneapolis. Perez’s two-run blast in the third inning was the 18th of his career in Minnesota.

Backed by plenty of support, Danny Duffy continued his stellar start to the 2021 season.

Duffy (4-1) allowed one run on two hits through seven innings. He struck out seven and walked three. He has allowed two earned runs in 29 innings this season, good for a 0.60 ERA and a 0.97 WHIP. He retired 12 Twins in a row at one point, and he had 18 consecutive scoreless innings before allowing a run in the seventh.

Matt Shoemaker (1-3) was as ineffective as Duffy was sharp. He allowed nine runs (eight earned) on eight hits in 3 1/3 innings.

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The Royals scored two runs in the first. Carlos Santana walked with one out and scored on Salvador Perez’s double that just eluded the glove of center fielder Byron Buxton. Perez scored on a sacrifice fly by Jorge Soler.

Santana reached again in the third on a single that got through the shift. Perez then hit a third-deck home run that traveled 434 feet to right center. He was tied with 17 home runs by a non-Twin with current teammate Santana as well as Edwin EncarnaciĆ³n.

Ryan O’Hearn gave the Royals a 5-0 lead in the fourth. One pitch after hitting a flyball with plenty of home-run distance but just foul, he hit one 426 feet to straightaway center.

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The Royals loaded the bases later in the inning and Whit Merrifield cleared them with a double, stretching the lead to 8-0. It was the Royals’ sixth hit in 17 at-bats this season with the bases loaded. Last season, they were a major league worst 5-for-31. Merrifield scored on an RBI groundout by Santana.

Andrew Benintendi hit home runs in the sixth and eighth innings.

Alex Kirilloff homered in the seventh and Nelson Cruz hit a two-run homer in the eighth for the Twins.

–Field Level Media