KANSAS CITY -- Speed demon Jarrod Dyson left the Royals' game in the first inning on Sunday with a sprained left ankle but apparently is OK.

X-rays were negative and the Royals expected that Dyson might be ready to play by the next game on Tuesday night against Baltimore.

"It's a little sore but it's all right," Dyson said. "I'm gonna be all right -- I'm tough, I'll tough it out. I don't like to be down for any injuries."

Dyson, leading off against Minnesota, hit a liner into left field and tried to stretch the hit into a double. But, sliding into the bag, he was tagged out by second baseman Luke Hughes on a throw from Rene Tosoni. Dyson appeared to land awkwardly as he started his slide.

"I was about to slide and I realized I had no shot [to be safe] so I tried to stop myself from sliding and couldn't get my feet underneath myself," Dyson said. "Full speed, it's tough to stop."

He was replaced in center field by Mitch Maier, who scored three runs and contributed a triple, double and walk as the Royals beat the Twins, 10-3.

Dyson was kept on the Major League roster primarily to be used as a late-inning pinch-runner and had stolen seven bases in seven attempts. Recently manager Ned Yost decided to use him in a starting role more frequently.

On Sunday, he took Melky Cabrera's spot in center field, the fifth game he'd started this season. His single was his third hit in 16 at-bats.

"It's what they call a grade one strain, just a sprained ankle that's not very severe. He could quite well be available on Tuesday," Yost said. "He caught his spike but there was no popping, there was no swelling in it so he's going to be all right."

Adcock earning increased role in 'pen

KANSAS CITY -- Nate Adcock, one of the Royals' rookie right-handers, is getting tested as a Rule 5 player. So far he's earned passing grades.

Adcock had never pitched above Class A, and he has to be kept on the Royals' big-league roster all year because of his Rule 5 status, so manager Ned Yost has worked him in gradually. After being thrown into the Opening Day fray, Adcock made only four more appearances through Saturday night's 11-2 victory over the Twins.

That outing was a special test because it involved him pitching to four left-handed hitters at the top of the Twins' order when the score was still tied, 2-2. A gamble or not?

"What kind of history has he got? He's pitched in A-ball," Yost said. "But he's done well against them up here so you kind of go on that."

Sure enough, Adcock got Denard Span to fly out, Matt Tolbert (a switch-hitter) to line out and, after Jason Kubel doubled, Justin Morneau to roll out.

Adcock wasn't intimidated by that task but was a bit surprised.

"I was, but I didn't take it any differently than anytime I go out there," Adcock said. "I still try to do the same old thing."

As Yost told it, that involves throwing a lot of strikes with a good, heavy sinker that keeps batted balls on the ground and some use of a changeup and a slider.

"His slider is a work in action right now -- he throws some good ones and he throws some cement-mixers up there," Yost said.

After Saturday's outing, Adcock had held lefties to a .167 average (vs. .364 by right-handed hitters). Yost also likes to use right-hander Aaron Crow against lefties (.200) or, for that matter, righties (even better at .115). His only lefty reliever, Tim Collins, curiously had held righties to a .161 mark vs. .346 by lefties.

Yost believes Collins will get better against the lefties. Meanwhile, Adcock has gained prominence in the pen.

"He's earned the opportunities," Yost said. "Every time he's pitched, he's done well. That'd be a pretty big boost for our 'pen if we can get him in the mix, too. That keeps us from over-using anybody."

Wood's brother-in-law drafted to NFL

KANSAS CITY -- Royals pitcher Blake Wood now has a fellow pro athlete in the family -- his brother-in-law Kris Durham.

Durham, a wide receiver from the University of Georgia, was taken in the fourth round (107th overall) of the NFL draft by the Seattle Seahawks. He and Wood's wife Jessica are children of former U. of Georgia athlete Michael Durham of Calhoun, Ga.

"I told my wife how lucky she is," Wood said. "Her dad ran track at UGA and he had the record in the high jump for like 20 years."

Kris Durham was overshadowed at Georgia by A.J. Green, the first wide receiver taken in the draft, the fourth pick overall by the Cincinnati Bengals. Durham caught 32 passes for 659 yards and three touchdowns last season.

"It's cool to have some other [pro athletes] in the family to have a lot of stuff in common," Wood said. "Even though it's not in the same sport, I'll understand what you're going through. ... Now I have a new favorite football team to root for."

Both Wood and Durham are tall trees from Georgia, each standing 6-5.

"He's about 20 pounds lighter and about eight times faster," Wood said, noting that foot speed isn't a requirement for a pitcher. "I've just got to throw a ball fast."

Eight-run, two-out explosion makes history

KANSAS CITY -- History lesson: When the Royals scored all eight runs against the Twins with two outs in the eighth inning during Saturday's 11-2 win, it marked their biggest two-out explosion in 18 years.

On May 19, 1993, the Royals had a first-inning eruption against the Athletics en route to a 13-8 victory. George Brett, the No. 3 hitter, started it off with a two-out single. Wally Joyner doubled and Mike Macfarlane lined a two-run single and they were off.

Other singles were contributed by Chris Gwynn, Greg Gagne, Jose Lind, Felix Jose and Joyner. Walks were drawn by Phil Hiatt and Brett (with the bases loaded) and Brian McRae was safe on a fielder's choice during the explosion.

The A's pitchers in that inning were Mike Mohler and Shawn Hillegas. Hipolito Pichardo started for the Royals but couldn't make it through five innings and Tom "Flash" Gordon picked up the victory. But the A's got to within 10-8 and he needed help from closer Jeff Montgomery, who pitched 1 1/3 innings for a save.

Gordon, Crow chosen for April awards

KANSAS CITY -- Rejuvenated left fielder Alex Gordon and rookie reliever Aaron Crow were selected for the Royals' monthly awards for April in a vote of Kansas City media.

Gordon, the Player of the Month, batted .338 and knocked in 19 runs with 12 doubles, two triples and two homers as he rebounded from a .215 season. He had a 19-game hitting streak and led the Majors with five outfield assists.

Crow, the Pitcher of the Month, had a 2-0 record and didn't give up a run in 11 appearances covering 13 2/3 innings. He stranded all nine runners he inherited and struck out 14 while allowing seven hits and five walks.