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Cards' Wainwright claims 20th win -9/23/2014, 10:35 AM

Bears beat Jets -9/23/2014, 10:35 AM

Cardinals rookie receiver John Brown developing -9/23/2014, 10:34 AM

TMP girls' golf second at Russell -9/23/2014, 10:55 AM

Wildcats move on -9/23/2014, 10:34 AM

Royals silence Indians in victory -9/23/2014, 10:34 AM

Chiefs nab first win, beat Dolphins -9/22/2014, 10:07 AM

Tiger women play to draw with ESU -9/22/2014, 9:58 AM

Wilson, Seahawks deny Manning, Broncos in overtime -9/22/2014, 9:58 AM

Kansas survives C. Michigan -9/21/2014, 11:36 AM

FHSU defense carries Tigers to win over Lindenwood -9/21/2014, 3:10 AM

Tiger women win in 2OT -9/21/2014, 7:27 PM

Tigers start 1-1 at home -9/21/2014, 7:27 PM

Tiger duo competes at ITA regional -9/21/2014, 7:27 PM

Area prep football roundup, Sept. 19 -9/21/2014, 7:27 PM

TMP plays better, comes up short at Smith Center -9/20/2014, 3:03 PM

Prep FB scores, Sept. 19 -9/19/2014, 10:36 PM

Hays High outlasts Liberal -9/19/2014, 7:22 PM

HHS girls third on home course -9/19/2014, 11:15 AM

HHS soccer drops match to Dodge City -9/19/2014, 10:21 AM

FHSU soccer falls to NSU -9/19/2014, 10:58 AM

Tigers look for first home win -9/19/2014, 10:59 AM

TMP soccer rolls past Buhler -9/19/2014, 11:00 AM

TMP girls' golf second in Larned -9/19/2014, 11:00 AM

Auburn squeaks past K-State in Manhattan -9/19/2014, 11:02 AM

HHS volleyball loses twice in Garden City -9/19/2014, 11:03 AM

HHS tennis fifth in Dodge -9/19/2014, 11:03 AM

FHSU tennis tops Kansas Wesleyan -9/18/2014, 10:30 AM

Royals set up key series with Detroit -9/18/2014, 10:29 AM

Monarchs face first road test, Redmen -9/18/2014, 10:14 AM

Big game for 'Cats -9/18/2014, 10:13 AM

Hays High gets Liberal for home opener -9/18/2014, 10:14 AM

Royals fall to Chicago -9/17/2014, 10:59 AM

Tigers' Herman named MIAA Golfer of the Week -9/17/2014, 10:58 AM

Tuesday prep volleyball scores -9/17/2014, 10:52 AM

KVA volleyball rankings, Sept. 17 -9/17/2014, 10:50 AM

TMP suffers second loss to Garden City -9/17/2014, 10:46 AM

Hays High volleyball moves to 10-0 -9/17/2014, 10:47 AM

Tiger volleyball takes No. 4 UNK to five sets -9/17/2014, 10:53 AM

Tigers ride momentum of first win -9/17/2014, 10:45 AM

Sports Scores

Tuesday

Prep basketball

Boys

Atwood 76, St. Francis 65

Dighton 62, Oberlin 47

Hillsboro 50, Goodland 47

Lakeside 42, Lincoln 32

Minneapolis 68, Russell 35

Rock Hills 42, Natoma 37

Salina Central 62, Andover 58

Salina South 62, Sacred Heart 47

Sharon Springs 75, Leoti 38

St. John's Beloit-Tipton 57, Osborne 34

Sylvan-Lucas 61, Thunder Ridge 48

Girls

Dighton 44, Atwood 11

Dodge City 71, Hays High 28

Hesston 51, Goodland 18

Hoisington 60, Victoria 46

Hoxie 65, St. Francis 13

Lincoln 33, Lakeside 26

Minneapolis 47, Otis-Bison 24

Osborne 59, Wilson 34

Sharon Springs 63, Oberlin 42

Sylvan-Lucas 43, Natoma 41 (ot)

Tescott 41, Rock Hills 33

Trego 56, Leoti 27

Thunder Ridge 33, St. John's Beloit-Tipton 30

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SPOTLIGHT
Royals swept by Twins

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Royals swept by Twins

Published on -4/14/2014, 10:07 AM

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By Andy McCullough

McClatchy-Tribune

MINNEAPOLIS -- In the precious seconds that cost the Royals on Sunday afternoon, the critical moments of a 4-3 defeat to Minnesota, Wade Davis committed two mistakes. One was physical. The other was mental.

A misplaced throw cost the Royals the lead. A momentary lapse cost them the game. Davis looked stoic but still seething inside the Royals clubhouse as they packed for three games in Houston.

"That's extremely frustrating," Davis said. "We had the win right there staring us in the face. It just didn't happen for me."

Protecting a one-run lead in the eighth inning, Davis induced a groundball back to the mound off the bat of backup outfielder Chris Herrmann. Davis wheeled to throw home, potentially able to start an inning-ending double play, but he found the ball stuck in his palm. His throw was off target, and a run scored.

What followed next, Davis admitted afterward, was "unacceptable." He yelled into his glove, and paused for a moment in the middle of the diamond. As he idled, Twins second baseman Brian Dozier took advantage and raced him to the plate. He beat the tag.

"I got frustrated," Davis said. "And I made a mental mistake by not getting there."

Thus, the Royals suffered a sweep at the hands of their division rivals, thanks to a variety of factors. In the first two games, their starting pitchers imploded.

The offense was mostly silent throughout. On Sunday, the bullpen contributed to the frustration.

Just last week, the Royals won a series against Tampa Bay, a club widely considered one of the American League's best. Then they caught a beating here at Target Field. The Twins outscored the Royals 17-2 in the first two games, but Sunday offered a more painful method of defeat.

"Every time we come here to Minnesota, we know it's a tough game with these guys," Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer said. "But we shouldn't be getting swept like this. We've just got to put a stop to it. Better early than late."

The series in Houston begins Tuesday. Hosmer smiled when he said Monday's day off came at an opportune time. The bitterness of this weekend could linger. Once again, they wasted another quality start from Jason Vargas, who allowed two runs across seven innings.

The afternoon illuminated the two chief concerns of the club during the season's first fortnight: The offense and the bullpen. Save for an eighth-inning rally, a three-run burst punctuated by Hosmer's go-ahead, RBI double, the bats were quiet against middling starter Kevin Correia.

"We've still got to come out swinging a little better than that," Hosmer said.

Yet they managed to enter the bottom of the eighth with the lead. Here is where things began to go awry. During the top of the inning, as the Royals knocked around Correia and reliever Brian Duensing, Aaron Crow was warming up. Davis was not.

Manager Ned Yost chose Crow to start the inning. His reasoning was two-fold, one a short-term consideration and the other a long-term reasoning. Crow was ready to pitch, and Yost is still trying to determine the proper bullpen roles for his relief corps.

"I'm trying to find somebody to tandem (with Davis) in the eighth inning," Yost said. "And Aaron is one of those candidates that I think can handle the eighth inning."

Crow failed his test Sunday. He opened with a walk to No. 9 hitter Pedro Florimon. Next he walked Dozier.

"The biggest thing is you can't come in and get behind in the count," Crow said, after he had done exactly that.

"It's frustrating," Yost said. "But I still felt like we could cover it."

Yost then turned to Davis, who struck out Joe Mauer and then walked third baseman Trevor Plouffe. The bases were loaded. The moment of reckoning, when Herrmann tapped a grounder back to the mound, was at hand.

"It's one of those things you don't anticipate," Vargas said. "The momentum is going your way. That's how quick the game can shift. You definitely don't want to get swept by a division team."

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