Monday, April 11, 2016

Quintana, White Sox keep Twins winless

The Twins' early-season slide continued in their sold-out home opener, asJose Quintana tossed six strong innings and Austin Jackson had two RBIs to lift the White Sox to a 4-1 win that dropped Minnesota's record to 0-7.
Quintana gave up one run on four hits and three walks to get his first victory of the year. He outpitched Twins right-hander Kyle Gibson, who went 5 2/3 innings, allowing three runs (one earned) on six hits and three walks.
The White Sox took an early 1-0 lead in the second on an RBI single up the middle fromBrett Lawrie with the infield in. After being helped by a throwing error from Eduardo Escobar, Chicago loaded the bases in the fourth to set up a two-run single from Jackson with two outs.
No team has ever lost the first seven games of a season and made the playoffs. Three teams -- the 1974 Pirates, 1995 Reds and 2011 Rays -- started out 0-6 and made the postseason, but they all won their seventh game of the season.
Near-miss and a connection: Jackson came within about two inches of launching a grand slam against Gibson with two outs in the fourth inning. The shot, against a 21-mph wind, curved around the foul pole at the last second. But Jackson connected on the next pitch for a two-run single to center.
Rosario gets Twins on the board: The Twins had trouble with runners in scoring position yet again, and their lone run came on an RBI groundout from Eddie Rosario in the fourth. But Trevor Plouffe was stranded at third, as Eduardo Escobar struck out looking to end the inning. The Twins went 0-for-6 with runners in scoring position.
Chance for a blowout: The White Sox loaded the bases in the fourth and fifth innings, but they were held to Jackson's two-run single in the fourth. In the fifth, after Lawrie was hit on the right wrist to load the bases with two out, Avisail Garcia swung at the next pitch and flied out to left field. Chicago left 12 runners on base.
Pressly continues to impress: One of the few bright spots for the Twins has been relieverRyan Pressly, and he threw 2 1/3 scoreless innings in relief of Gibson. Pressly has yet to give up a run in five innings, and he has struck out six. He figures to have a more prominent role in the bullpen going forward.
By hurling a scoreless seventh inning, Chicago's Matt Albers extended his scoreless streak to 27 1/3 innings over 24 appearances dating back to Aug. 5, 2015. Albers gave up two hits in the seventh, but he benefited from a double play turned off Kurt Suzuki's popup bunt, which Albers grabbed and then threw to first to nail Escobar.
Adam Eaton picked up his first hit since becoming a father, thanks to Robin Ventura's manager challenge in the eighth. With two outs, Eaton hit a grounder to second basemanBrian Dozier and was ruled out at first despite Dozier's slight bobble delaying the throw. Video replay overturned the call, giving Eaton an infield hit.
White Sox: Carlos Rodon pitched well enough to win during his season debut in Oakland, allowing two runs over seven innings. But Sonny Gray was a little stingier, and Rodon suffered the 2-1 loss. Rodon will be working on six days' rest Wednesday night at 7:10 p.m. CT, due to Sunday's rainout and Tuesday's scheduled off-day.
Twins: After an off-day on Tuesday, the Twins host the White Sox on Wednesday at 7:10 p.m. CT. Right-hander Phil Hughes, who is coming off a solid start against the Orioles, will get the nod. Hughes went six-plus innings vs. Baltimore, but he was stuck with a hard-luck loss, as two inherited runners scored in the seventh.

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