KANSAS CITY, MO. -- Carl Pavano was the big story Friday night, as he notched his 100th career victory, but it was another good night for the Twins offense, too.
Royals starter Danny Duffy is a hard-throwing young lefthander who will win a lot of games in the majors, but the Twins made him throw 96 pitches over five innings, as they built a 3-2 lead.
Denard Span hit a two-run double and nearly had an inside-the-park home run, but the Royals nailed him at the plate on a strong relay throw from Alcides Escobar.
Michael Cuddyer hit his sixth homer in the third inning, a 421-foot blast that appeared to land in the fountains in left-center field.
"I think collectively, we're swinging the bats better," Cuddyer said.
Indeed, the Twins are averaging 5.36 runs per game over their past 14 games. Entering Friday, the Twins were averaging 3.58 runs per game on the season, but had climbed above Oakland (3.54) and were no longer the lowest-scoring team in the American League.
Catcher Drew Butera got in on the action again, with a run-scoring double and a sacrifice fly. He also drew a key two-out walk against Duffy and scored on Span's second-inning double.
After winning 8-2 on Thursday, the Twins defeated the Royals 5-2.
"It’s a tough first two games [of the series]," Royals DH Billy Butler said. "The Twins are struggling, and you want to get them while they’re down because they’ve had really good success against us in the past. They’ve had success against everybody in the Central, and you really want to take advantage of it when they’re down. But we’re not doing it right now."