Kansas City, MO – Tony Abreu went 3-for-4 with three RBI, including a go-ahead RBI single in the sixth, as Kansas City took a 6-4 win over Minnesota to salvage the finale of a three-game set.
Billy Butler, Lorenzo Cain and Eric Hosmer each drove in a run for the Royals, who dropped both games of a doubleheader on Saturday after Friday's opener was rained out.
Luis Mendoza gave up two runs in the start, also allowing seven hits and striking out three over five innings of work. Tim Collins (5-2) pitched the sixth inning and got the win despite giving up two runs.
Alexi Casilla drove in two and Chris Parmelee hit a solo home run for the Twins, who had won three of four coming in.
Esmerling Vasquez (0-1) got the loss in his first career start as he was charged with five runs on seven hits with three walks and two strikeouts over 5 2/3 innings.
"Vasquez was good for his first outing out there," said Minnesota manager Ron Gardenhire. "He was misfiring a little bit early, but he settled in pretty decent."
The Twins had tied the game with a pair of runs in the top of the sixth, but the Royals went back up in the bottom of the inning.
With two outs, Hosmer doubled and that prompted a pitching change as Vasquez stepped aside for Tyler Robertson, who promptly gave up an RBI single to Abreu that gave the Royals a 5-4 lead.
Minnesota left a man on in the seventh before getting retired in order in the eighth.
The Royals gave themselves some room in the eighth on an RBI double from Cain and Greg Holland worked a 1-2-3 ninth for his 10th save of the season.
The Twins got a run on the board in the first on a Justin Morneau run-scoring groundout and Parmelee made it a 2-0 game when he led off the second with his fourth homer of the year.
The Royals, though, went on top in the bottom of the second. Salvador Perez led off with a walk, Mike Moustakas singled and Cain walked to load the bases. Hosmer followed with a sacrifice fly and Abreu singled in two and the Royals had a 3-2 lead.
"(Hitting coach Kevin) Seitzer let us know that he was kind of wild and erratic at times, so I was just going up there and trying to be patient," said Cain about facing Vasquez. "I definitely think it worked to our advantage. We ended up winning by two runs and those walks were definitely crucial."
It stayed that way until the fifth when Butler's RBI single made it a 4-2 game, but the Twins got a two-run single from Casilla in the sixth to tie the contest.
The Twins brought up Vasquez from Triple-A Rochester prior to the game. Also, the team activated pitcher P.J. Walters from the 60-day disabled list as he had been out since mid-June with right shoulder inflammation ... Minnesota has won 10 of the 15 games against Kansas City this season ... Kansas City hosts Texas for four games starting on Monday ... Minnesota begins a three-game set in Chicago on Monday.