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Cardinals, Royals drop series finales on the Fourth of July

St. Louis Cardinals catcher Andrew Knizner, front, fields the throw as Colorado Rockies' Joshua...
St. Louis Cardinals catcher Andrew Knizner, front, fields the throw as Colorado Rockies' Joshua Fuentes scores the go-ahead run on a single hit by Elias Diaz in the ninth inning of a baseball game Sunday, July 4, 2021, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)(David Zalubowski | AP)
Published: Jul. 4, 2021 at 6:39 PM CDT
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DENVER (AP) - Elías Díaz delivered a two-out run-scoring single in the ninth on an afternoon Germán Márquez struck out 11 and was picked for his first All-Star team, helping the Colorado Rockies rally for a 3-2 win over the St. Louis Cardinals.

Díaz sent a 3-2 pitch from recently named All-Star closer Alex Reyes into left and Josh Fuentes beat the throw home with a head-first dive. As the crowd cheered, Díaz was mobbed in the outfield by teammates.

Díaz also lifted the Rockies past St. Louis with a three-run homer in the ninth on Thursday. Trevor Story tied the game at 2-apiece with a sacrifice fly in the eighth. Story added a solo homer in the first.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) - Kenta Maeda struck out a season-best 10 in six scoreless innings, Jorge Polanco homered and the Minnesota Twins beat the Kansas City Royals 6-2 on Sunday to halt a five-game losing streak.

Maeda (4-3) gave up two hits and a walk in a splendid outing that matched his longest of the year.

Minnesota avoided a three-game sweep, building a cushion in the seventh inning when a two-run homer by Polanco and a solo shot by Alex Kirilloff extended the lead to 5-0.

Max Kepler hit a solo homer to right field in the sixth for the Twins, his seventh of the season. He has seven hits, six RBIs, two home runs and six walks since returning from the injured list on June 18.

Polanco turned on a fastball and sent it into the left-field bullpen. Two batters later, Kirilloff also connected off Richard Lovelady.

Kansas City starter Brad Keller (6-9) permitted two runs, five hits and two walks. He struck out seven in 6 1/3 innings, his second-longest outing of the season.

The Twins struck first in the third after Luis Arraez singled with two outs and advanced to second on a wild pitch. Arraez scored on Trevor Larnach’s single.

Larnach also drove in Arraez with a single in the ninth.

Jarrod Dyson hit a two-run single in the bottom of the ninth off Hansel Robles to break up the shutout.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Twins: 3B Josh Donaldson sat out after hurting his hamstring Saturday on a double. Minnesota manager Rocco Baldelli said it’s not a major issue and plans to have Donaldson back soon. ... DH Nelson Cruz (stiff neck) was scratched from the lineup.

Royals: Activated OF Andrew Benintendi (fractured rib) off the injured list and optioned Edward Olivares, who hit his first home run of the season Saturday. Kansas City went 5-13 with Benintendi on the IL.

UP NEXT

The Twins head home to take on the Chicago White Sox with Bailey Ober (0-1, 5.84 ERA) pitching Monday.

The Royals host Cincinnati on Monday, with Mike Minor (6-6, 5.33) scheduled to start.

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