Twins streak fizzles

  • Article by: JIM SOUHAN , Star Tribune
  • Updated: July 5, 2006 - 7:07 AM

Most of the offensive fireworks came from the lowly Royals, who ended the Twins' impressive run of victories at 11.

THE STREAK

Figures from the Twins' 11-game winning streak:

77 Runs scored.

26 Runs given up.

9 Games won at the Metrodome.

3 Victories by Francisco Liriano.

KANSAS CITY, MO. - The Twins had won 19 of 20 games with hot hitting, a couple of dominant starting pitchers and exceptional work from their bullpen.

Even that streak of brilliance, though, couldn't obscure the potential problems in their rotation, one of which was exposed Tuesday night at Kauffman Stadium by the Kansas City Royals.

The Twins' 11-game winning streak ended because fifth starter Boof Bonser walked three consecutive batters during a four-run third inning, leading to a 7-2 loss before a crowd of 23,996.

The Twins had been trying to tie the second-longest winning streak in franchise history. Instead, they cost themselves a chance to cut their deficit in the American League Central to eight games.

"It was kind of a disappointing ballgame," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "We didn't throw strikes. ... We scored and sent Bons back out there and he didn't throw strikes.

"That set a bad tone."

You wouldn't have expected the Twins to end their streak against Royals starter Jimmy Gobble, whose career record against the Twins was 1-4 with a 5.82 ERA before he shut them down.

Lew Ford hit a two-run homer off Gobble in the third. Bonser made that lead last for a matter of seconds.

He gave up a one-out homer to David DeJesus in the bottom of the inning, followed by a double to Mark Grudzielanek. With two outs, he walked three straight batters, forcing in a run, before Angel Berroa hit a two-run single to left.

"Obviously, giving up that many walks is not a good thing," Bonser said.

At the plate, the Twins let Gobble off the hook, hitting into double plays in the third and fourth innings. They also hit into a third double play in the eighth.

Catcher Mike Redmond, playing for the ailing and resting Joe Mauer, entered the day hitting .425 against lefties. He got a hit in his first at-bat, but wound up grounding into two double plays.

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