Kent Hrbek's three RBI in Minneapolis enabled Minnesota to finish a sweep of the three-game series with Kansas City.
Teammate Mark Salas helped with a homer and so did a strange play that allowed Minnesota's Greg Gagne to score the tying run and Kirby Puckett to score the winning run.
With Kansas City ahead, 3-2, Gagne led off the fifth by walking. He went to second on Steve Lombardozzi's sacrifice, then rounded third on Puckett's grounder to shortstop Buddy Biancalana behind second base.
Biancalana threw to George Brett at third, but Brett threw to catcher Jamie Quirk. Gagne turned and came back to third. Mickey Hatcher singled to score Gagne, then Hrbek singled to score Puckett from second.
"It was just one of those plays that doesn't come up often," Brett said. "Maybe once a year, if that. We didn't work on it in spring training, but I'm sure we'll work on it a dozen times next spring.
"Either I've got to give the ball to him (Quirk) sooner, or he has to give it back sooner, because there was no way anyone could cover third."
Royals Manager Dick Howser did not blame Brett, who had two doubles, a sacrifice fly and two RBI.
"We had seven runs in three games," he said. "That's the reason right there (for losing). What we have to do is snap out of it. We've got to get some hits."
"Playing California will get them up," said Manager Ray Miller of the Twins. "If everyone's healthy and strong, I like Kansas City. They've got the pitching and they're playing in their park."
John Butcher (11-14) said he was lucky to win after yielding eight hits in 6 2/3 innings.
"I'd rather pitch to California than to these guys," he said, "but they're definitely not swinging the bat the way they're capable of."