Orlando Hudson's homer lifts Twins over Royals
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Hitting right-handed against Kansas City reliever John Parrish, Hudson led off the seventh inning by smashing a 1-0 fastball off the facing of the second deck in left field to break a tie score and lift the Twins to a 6-5 victory on Saturday afternoon.
Hudson's first homer since Aug. 29 traveled an estimated 384 feet and was the first shot at Target Field to reach the upper level. The veteran second baseman finished 2-for-3 with a walk and also made a nice defensive play to help reliever Matt Guerrier escape a jam in the eighth.
The win went to reliever Brian Duensing, who worked two scoreless innings in relief of shaky Nick Blackburn. Guerrier left a runner on second in the eighth, and Jon Rauch struck out David DeJesus looking with runners at the corners in the ninth to convert his sixth save in as many opportunities.
Rick Ankiel homered twice off Twins starter Blackburn -- a two-run blast to start the scoring in the second inning, and a solo shot in the fourth that pulled the Royals (4-7) within 5-3. In the fifth, Willie Bloomquist delivered an RBI double and Scott Podsednik an RBI single to knot the score at 5.
It stayed that way until Hudson's moonshot to lead off the seventh.
They'll send right-hander Carl Pavano (1-0, 1.38 ERA) to the mound for Sunday's series finale against Royals righty Luke Hochevar (1-0, 2.84).