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Gray dazzles before injury, Twins beat Royals 7-3


MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Sonny Gray cruised before leaving in the seventh inning because of right pectoral soreness, and the Minnesota Twins beat the Kansas City Royals 7-3 Sunday behind Gio Urshela's three-run homer.

Gray (3-1) allowed two hits and retired 14 in a row before Andrew Benintendi’s single leading off the seventh.

With a 3-1 count on Bobby Witt Jr. and Kansas City asking for a video review to try to get a hit batter call, Twins manager Rocco Baldelli and athletic trainer came to the mound as Gray appeared to be trying to stretch a muscle near hi pitching shoulder.

Gray was replaced by Griffin Jax, who struck out Witt and allowed MJ Melendez's RBI double.

Gray didn’t walk a batter and struck out four as his ERA droped to 2.41 in his first season in Minnesota. He allowed five runs in five May starts covering 27 1/3 innings after recovering from a hamstring strain during his second start.

Nick Gordon and Trevor Larnach hit the Twins' first consecutive solo homers of the season in the fourth as Minnesota gained a four-game split.

Zack Greinke (0-4) gave up five runs, six hits and two walks in four innings. He has a 5.05 ERA and has allowed at least five earned runs in three of his last four starts after not giving up more than three in any of his first six.

Greinke stranded two runners after two walks in the first inning. Byron Buxton and Luis Arraez singled ahead of Urshela’s fourth homer of the year in the third.

Gordon’s first homer of the season started the fourth and Larnach followed with his third.


Minnesota recalled Royce Lewis, one of the team’s top prospects, from St. Paul before the game and optioned Juan Miranda to to Triple-A farm team. Lewis, 22, hit .308 with two homers in 11 games for the Twins earlier in the month when Carlos Correa missed time.

Lewis, a natural shortstop, was optioned with the idea of getting playing time in other spots to make him more valuable and he appeared at shortstop, third base, left field and center field in 10 games with St. Paul since being optioned on May 18.

Baldelli plans to move him around the diamond this time and he started Sunday in center field. But Lewis left the game in the fourth with right knee pain after crashing hard into the wall making a catch in the third.


Royals: Salvador Perez was back at catcher in his second game back from missing 11 days with a left thumb sprain.

Twins: OF Max Kepler won’t be going on the injured list after leaving Saturday’s game with a quadriceps injury. Baldelli said Kepler was feeling better than anticipated, but he was out of Sunday’s lineup. … C Gary Sánchez was feeling better after leaving Sunday’s game due to heat-related reasons. Sánchez was available off the bench but did not get in the game.


Royals: RHP Jonathan Heasley (0-2, 4.73 ERA) will start for Kansas City in the opener at Cleveland on Monday. Heasley has allowed three runs in five innings in each of his last two starts. The Guardians counter with RHP Zach Plesac (1-4, 5.40).

Twins: RHP Dylan Bundy (3-2, 4.54) will face Detroit for the second straight start as Minnesota opens a five-game road series Monday against the Tigers. Bundy has allowed one run in 8 2/3 innings since missing time due to COVID-19. Detroit is scheduled to start RHP Beau Brieske (0-4, 5.04).


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