Doumit homers from both sides, Twins beat Royals

Published 9:17 am Monday, July 23, 2012

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Ryan Doumit put his name in the Twins’ record book Sunday, accomplishing something no Minnesota player had done in 20 years.

Doumit homered from both sides of the plate and drove in four runs to lead the Twins to a 7-5 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Sunday.

Doumit became the third Twins player to go deep from both sides in a game. The others were Chili Davis (1992) and Roy Smalley (1986).

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“That’s great company,” Doumit said.

And the home runs were no-doubters.

“I had a pretty good idea” that both were out, Doumit said.

Doumit homered to lead off the second inning swinging left-handed. He opened the sixth with his ninth home run, batting right-handed against reliever Tim Collins. It was Doumit’s sixth career multihomer game, the second this season.

Hitting .354 in his past 26 games, Doumit also had a two-run single with two outs in a four-run third to match his career high for RBIs.

“Home runs are always great, but with the bases loaded, him driving it the other way was huge,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “I thought that was an impressive at-bat. It was a fastball away and he stayed on it and didn’t try to do too much with it and shot it the other way. That was a big hit for us. It was a big day for him and for us.”

The Twins signed Doumit to a $3 million, one-year contract as a free agent in the offseason.

“We’re really happy we got a chance to get this guy,” Gardenhire said. “It’s paying dividends for us. He’s a force in the middle of our lineup. He can do a lot of things — outfield, catch, DH, first base a little. And he can swing the bat.

“I knew we had to get him in there today some way or another. We were looking at lot of different routes. I wanted to keep Doumit’s bat in there and it worked out pretty good.”

Samuel Deduno (1-0), who made six relief appearances the past two years with San Diego and Colorado, picked up his first big league victory. He limited the Royals to one run and six singles over 6 1-3 innings.

Lorenzo Cain’s sacrifice fly in the fourth scored Mike Moustakas with the only run off Deduno, who was making his third major league start.



“His ball-to-strike ratio


was a lot better,” Gardenhire said. “He threw the ball over a lot more. He was very effective and got us deep into the game.”

Doumit’s big day spoiled the Royals debut of right-hander Jeremy Guthrie, acquired Friday in a trade with the Rockies for Jonathan Sanchez. Guthrie (3-10) yielded four runs on five hits and three walks in five innings.

“I thought he threw the ball OK,” Royals manager Ned Yost said. “He had a rough third inning, but I didn’t think he made a horrible pitch. He kept the ball down in the zone and I don’t think he elevated all day. He made good pitches and I thought they hit good pitches. I was impressed.”

Guthrie, who led the National League in home runs allowed with 21, hung a breaking ball on a 1-1 count to Doumit, who hit it out to right.

The Twins bunched three hits and two walks off Guthrie in a four-run third. Jamey Carroll led off the inning with a single and, with one out, Ben Revere and Joe Mauer walked.

It appeared Guthrie might escape unscathed after Josh Willingham’s infield popup for the second out, but Doumit delivered a two-run single. Brian Dozier doubled off the left-field wall to drive in two more runs.

Kansas City’s rotation had a 7.38 ERA during a 3-7 homestand. The Royals have lost 15 of 20 and are only a half-game in front of the Twins for last place in the AL Central.

Billy Butler homered, his 19th, with Moustakas aboard in the eighth against Twins reliever Anthony Swarzak. Pinch-hitter Yuniesky Betancourt also connected in the Royals’ two-run ninth.

“As always with Kansas City, it comes down to one or two runs,” Gardenhire said. “You never feel like they’re out of the game. We’ve had so many of these games. It got close at the end.”