Royals send Shields to hill in second test with Twins

Workhorse righty James Shields tries to end a 10-start winless drought on Friday night when the Kansas City Royals visit Target Field for the second of four games with the Minnesota Twins.

The former Tampa Bay Rays ace was 2-2 after six starts in 2013, but has since gone 0-4 in 10 outings in spite of having his earned run average lowered from 3.00 to 2.92.

He defeated the Rays on April 30, then got a no-decision in his next start and lost four in a row between May 11 and 27, in which the Royals scored just seven runs.

Kansas City has won each of his last five starts, but Shields has gotten no- decisions in each while allowing 10 runs in 32 innings.

He is 4-2 in 11 career meetings with the Twins.

For Minnesota, P.J. Walters tries to end a four-start winless skid of his own.

The Alabama native was 2-0 after his initial two starts of the season, but has since gone 0-3 in four starts.

He was gone after just two-thirds of an inning in his most recent outing on June 22 in Cleveland, allowing one hit and walking five batters while surrendering six runs.

Walters was a 4-1 loser to the Twins on June 5 at Kansas City after giving up three unearned runs in six innings.

He's dropped both career starts against the Royals.

On Thursday, Samuel Deduno tossed seven stellar innings and Justin Morneau doubled twice and drove in a run as the Twins downed the Royals, 3-1.

Deduno (4-2) continued his success against the Royals by limiting them to one run on five hits and one walk, improving to 3-0 with a 0.93 ERA in three career outings against the AL Central rivals.

Oswaldo Arcia and Pedro Florimon each knocked in a run for the Twins, who survived Glen Perkins' shaky appearance in the ninth to win for just the second time in six games.

The Royals are also slumping and have lost six of their last eight. Jeremy Guthrie (7-6) dropped his third straight start by allowing three runs -- two earned -- on six hits and two walks in 6 1/3 innings.

Kansas City has beaten the Twins in five of the seven matchups this season.