Sports

Longoria homers, Balfour sharp in spring debut to help Rays beat Twins 6-3

  • Tampa Bay Rays' Evan Longoria swings at a pitch by Minnesota Twins pitcher Ricky Nolasco in the first inning of a spring exhibition baseball game on Sunday, March 2, 2014, in Port Charlotte, Fla. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

    Tampa Bay Rays' Evan Longoria swings at a pitch by Minnesota Twins pitcher Ricky Nolasco in the first inning of a spring exhibition baseball game on Sunday, March 2, 2014, in Port Charlotte, Fla. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)  (The Associated Press)

  • Minnesota Twins' Anthony Swarzak winds up for a warmup pitch in the third inning of an exhibition baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays, Sunday, March 2, 2014, in Port Charlotte, Fla. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

    Minnesota Twins' Anthony Swarzak winds up for a warmup pitch in the third inning of an exhibition baseball game against the Tampa Bay Rays, Sunday, March 2, 2014, in Port Charlotte, Fla. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)  (The Associated Press)

  • Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Alex Cobb warms up during the first inning of an exhibition baseball game against the Minnesota Twins, Sunday, March 2, 2014, in Port Charlotte, Fla. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)

    Tampa Bay Rays pitcher Alex Cobb warms up during the first inning of an exhibition baseball game against the Minnesota Twins, Sunday, March 2, 2014, in Port Charlotte, Fla. (AP Photo/Steven Senne)  (The Associated Press)

Evan Longoria hit a two-run homer and Grant Balfour was perfect in his first appearance in a Tampa Bay uniform since 2010, helping the Rays beat the Minnesota Twins 6-3 on Sunday.

Jerry Sands also homered for the Rays, who got a quick third inning from Balfour, as well as 1 2-3 scoreless innings from starter Alex Cobb.

Offseason acquisition Ricky Nolasco allowed two hits in two scoreless innings for the Twins, who signed him to a $49 million, four-year deal this winter and are counting on the right-hander to help bolster a struggling pitching staff that posted a major league-worst 5.26 ERA last season.

Oswaldo Arcia and Brandon Waring hit solo homers for the Twins. Waring's shot was a mammoth drive that struck the roof of an island-themed bar and gathering spot beyond the left-centerfield wall.