Royals stop Twins' winning streak at 11 games

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- After missing more than a month with a hamstring injury, David DeJesus is making up for lost time.

DeJesus homered in Kansas City's four-run fourth inning and Mark Grudzielanek had two doubles and scored two runs as the Royals beat Minnesota 7-2 on Tuesday night, ending the Twins' 11-game winning streak.

DeJesus extended his hitting streak to 11 games, the longest by a Royals player this season, with a home run just inside the foul pole in right off Boof Bonser. DeJesus, who also singled and walked, is hitting .490 during the streak. The Royals (28-54) are 17-17 since DeJesus returned from the disabled list on May 29.

Is DeJesus in a zone?

"I think so," he said. "I could be right now. I've never felt this good at the plate. I feel confident up there that I'm not going to swing at any of their pitches, but that I'm going to swing at the pitch I want to. I've never felt as confident as I am right now."

DeJesus has hit in 28 of his last 32 games, scoring 27 runs in that stretch. He has hiked his average from .167 to a season-high .331 since returning.

"Once he releases it, I'm knowing what's going on," DeJesus said. "I can see where the ball is going. I'm real comfortable up there right now. On the home run, it was 1-and-1 and he threw a fastball. I didn't try to hit a home run. I got the bat to it and it took off."

Just like his batting average.

"He keeps going and we need him to keep going," Royals manager Buddy Bell said. "He's a heck of a player. He gives us energy."

It was the Twins' longest streak since winning 11 in a row from Sept. 13-24, 2003.

"All streaks must come to an end," Minnesota's Torii Hunter said. "You can't go around saying, 'Man, the streak is over.' Everybody has lost before. We've just got to start another one."

Said Twins manager Ron Gardenhire: "I guess we were hoping the streak would go on forever. We've been pitching pretty good and we're bound to have one of these games."

Left-hander Jimmy Gobble (3-1) pitched five effective innings in his second start of the season. Gobble, who has made 30 relief appearances, held the Twins to two runs and five hits.

"I felt pretty good as far as stamina goes," Gobble said. "I went out there and tried to throw strikes, keep the ball down and stay aggressive in the strike zone. That was my main key. After we got the lead, I was trying to be a little too perfect in the fourth, trying to make a great pitch, instead of staying down. It took me two batters [both walks] to do that, which shouldn't be the case. I got the groundball, got the double play and got out of it."

Elmer Dessens pitched two innings for his second save in six opportunities.

After DeJesus' home run, Grudzielanek hit the first of his doubles. With one out, Bonser walked the next three batters, including Mark Teahen with the bases loaded to score Grudzielanek. Angel Berroa's two-out single scored Emil Brown and Matt Stairs, who had both walked.

Bonser (2-2), who shut out the Chicago Cubs for 6 1/3 innings in his previous start to earn a win, was pulled after three innings. He allowed four runs and four hits and walked four.

"I'm disappointed we didn't throw strikes," Gardenhire said. "We walked three guys in a row and didn't attack the strike zone like we've been doing. We don't walk people. At this level, the ball has got to go over the plate. That's what is frustrating. There is no excuse for walks. You've got to go at somebody and make them swing the bat."

Lew Ford hit his first homer since May 28, a two-run shot in the third that gave Twins a 2-0 lead. It was his third of the season.

The Royals scored in the fifth when Grudzielanek led off with a double down the left field line and scored on Brown's single to shallow right.

John Buck snapped an 0-for-9 with a two-run single in the eighth for the final two Kansas City runs.

Justin Morneau singled in the Twins' sixth to extend his hitting streak to a career-high 12 games. He has hit safely in 23 of 24 games.

Game notes
Twins C Joe Mauer, who leads the majors with a .391 batting average, has severe indigestion and did not start. Manager Ron Gardenhire said Mauer would start Wednesday. ... RF Reggie Sanders, who was hitting .239 in his past 13 games and has not homered since June 10, when he hit his 300th home run, was held out of the Kansas City lineup.