Ninth inning rally gives Twins first win
By Meghan Montemurro, The Sports Xchange - CHICAGO -- Right fielder Oswaldo Arcia hit a two-out triple in the ninth inning and the Minnesota Twins rallied for a 10-9 victory over the Chicago White Sox on Thursday.
The Twins scored two runs with two outs in the ninth off White Sox closer Matt Lindstrom.
Third baseman Trevor Plouffe tied it at 9 with a single to right field, scoring left fielder Josh Willingham, who reached on a walk. Arcia followed with a triple to deep center field that scored Plouffe and put Minnesota (1-2) ahead by one run.
The White Sox had the tying run on third base in the bottom of the ninth, but Twins closer Glen Perkins got pinch-hitter Paul Konerko to ground out for his first save of the season. It was the first blown save for Lindstrom (0-1).
Third baseman Marcus Semien hit the go-ahead home run in the eighth for his first hit of the season to put the White Sox ahead 9-8.
The White Sox (2-1) blew a three-run lead, which they had after six innings.
Semien, who had been 0 for 13 before his home run, hit a 2-2 pitch off Twins reliever Caleb Thielbar (1-0) with one out in the eighth to put the White Sox ahead.
Twins catcher Josmil Pinto hit a home run to lead off the eighth against reliever Ronald Belisario, tying the score at 8 and erasing an impressive comeback by the White Sox.
Chicago first baseman Jose Abreu had a go-ahead triple with the bases loaded in the sixth. Twins reliever Anthony Swarzak fooled Abreu on two curveballs to start the at-bat. But Abreu made Swarzak pay for throwing a third consecutive curve, clearing the bases with a three-run triple to give the White Sox an 8-5 lead.
Abreu finished 2 for 4 with four RBIs.
Semien set the stage for Abreu's go-ahead, three-run triple. He stepped to the plate in the sixth and drew a full-count, bases-loaded walk to drive in a run to tie the score at 5. Three pitches later, Abreu put the White Sox ahead.
Twins first baseman Chris Colabello cut the White Sox's lead to 8-6 with an RBI groundout in the seventh. Plouffe followed with a two-out double to make it a one-run game. White Sox center fielder Adam Eaton made a run-saving catch into the wall to preserve the Chicago lead to end the seventh.
Colabello had a career-high six RBIs in the Twins' win.
Twins starting pitcher Phil Hughes allowed four runs and five hits and struck out seven in five innings. White Sox starter Jose Quintana also picked up a no-decision after surrendering five runs (two earned) and striking out eight in six innings.
For a second straight day, the White Sox put themselves in position for a comeback win against the Twins.
Although the White Sox had five runners reach base through the first four innings, Hughes did not let them take advantage. Only one mistake cost Hughes, who came in with a 1.34 ERA in 11 previous games against the White Sox -- a career best against any team.
Left fielder Alejandro De Aza put the White Sox ahead 1-0 with his major league-leading third home run of the season to lead off the second.
However, the White Sox started punishing the ball in the fifth. Eaton started the inning with a triple and scored on Abreu's RBI double. Designated hitter Adam Dunn followed with a two-run homer to right field to trim the Twins' lead to 5-4.
Quintana labored to get through his outing. He was poised to escape a two-out, bases-loaded jam in the third with the White Sox's 1-0 lead still intact. However, right fielder Avisail Garcia misjudged the ball off Colabello's bat, leading to a bases-clearing double and a 3-1 Twins lead. All three runs were earned after the White Sox botched a rundown with one out in the inning, leading to the bases-loaded trouble.
Quintana ran into trouble again in the fifth despite getting the first two batters out. Twins designated hitter Joe Mauer snapped an 0-for-10 streak to start the season with a two-out single. Mauer's hit began a stretch of three straight by the Twins. Mauer and Willingham (single) scored on Colabello's two-run, two-out double to right field for a 5-1 Twins lead.
NOTES: 3B Conor Gillaspie (flu) was held out of the White Sox's lineup on Thursday for the second consecutive game. Manager Robin Ventura said Gillaspie was improving and available off the bench against the Twins. ...Twins RHP Casey Fien (left ankle contusion) felt better one day after getting hit by a ball up the middle off Adam Eaton's bat to end the seventh inning of Wednesday's game. Twins manager Ron Gardenhire expects Fien to be ready for the weekend series against the Cleveland Indians. ... Twins RHP Brian Duensing was activated from the paternity list before Thursday's series finale against the White Sox. RHP Michael Tonkin was optioned to Triple-A Rochester to make room for Duensing on the 25-man roster.