Jason Castro homered and Devin Smeltzer tossed six shutout innings to pick up his first major league victory as the Minnesota Twins completed a three-game sweep of the Kansas City Royals with a 3-0 victory on Sunday afternoon in Minneapolis.
The left-handed Smeltzer (1-1), recalled from Triple-A Rochester earlier Sunday when reliever Sam Dyson was placed on the injured list with right biceps tendinitis, allowed just a pair of singles and a walk in his third major league start. He struck out four and also picked off a runner.
Taylor Rogers pitched a 1-2-3 ninth to earn his 17th save. Tyler Duffey and Sergio Romo each pitched a hitless inning of relief.
Eddie Rosario had two hits and two RBIs and Luis Arraez went 2-for-3 with a walk and scored twice for the Twins, who won for the sixth time in seven games.
Brad Keller (7-11) suffered his first loss in five career starts against Minnesota, allowing two runs on five hits and a walk over seven innings while striking out seven. It was the sixth straight loss for the Royals.
Minnesota took a 1-0 lead in the sixth when Arraez led off with a single, took second on a wild pitch and advanced to third on a groundout by Nelson Cruz. He scored on a sacrifice fly by Rosario into the gap in right-center, where Jorge Soler made a diving catch on a sinking liner.
Castro made it 2-0 with his 11th homer in the seventh, a 417-drive over the fence in center field.
Rosario extended Minnesota’s lead to 3-0 in the eighth inning with an RBI single off the wall in right, driving in Arraez who had walked and advanced to second on a walk to Cruz.
Cruz, who had homered in five consecutive games at Target Field and was 6-for-8 with four homers and 10 RBIs in the first two games of the series, finished 0-for-3 with a walk.
—Field Level Media