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White Sox 7, Twins 6: But No Cigar

The Sox strike back after two convincing losses.

MLB: Minnesota Twins at Chicago White Sox Kamil Krzaczynski-USA TODAY Sports

If not for an early blow-up, Minnesota would have had a chance.

Royce kept rolling, — who else? — singling in Edouard Julien after the rookie DH had doubled to lead off the ballgame. Another day, another impact RBI from Lewis, and for a fleeting moment it felt like Minnesota would be right back at it after a pair of 8-run wins against the Chicago White Sox.

Unfortunately, Pablo Lopez was unable to continue his roll. Coming off his dominant 14-strikeout performance at home against the New York Mets, Lopez was smacked around for five Chicago runs in the home first, surrendering four hard-hit balls and two homers, after the inning started with a squibbed infield single and a pair of strikeouts.

5-1 White Sox.

The White Sox would record six hits in their first trip through the batting order off Lopez. On the flipside, Touki Toussaint would recover from his first-inning struggles to set down eleven Twins in a row, including facing the minimum in each of his innings after the first.

But Minnesota would start to find the cracks in the Chicago bullpen. The Twins would get two men on in the sixth, but fail to score. They’d do the same in the seventh, with the same result. Finally, a four-run outburst against reliever Gregory Santos would get them back on the board; opening walks to both Jorge Polanco and Royce Lewis would set up singles by Max Kepler and Carlos Correa (his plating Lewis), sandwiched by a run-scoring wild pitch that brought Polanco in.

Kyle Farmer would add an RBI groundout, and Matt Wallner would help the Twins’ fifth run cross by reaching on an Andrew Vaughn fielding error. Representing the tying run, Christian Vazquez would weakly pop out to end the rally.

Now a 7-5 game, the Twins would allow closer Jhoan Duran to get some work in the home eighth — he made quick, nine-pitch work of his inning and gave Minnesota a chance to make up a two-run deficit with three outs left with which to play.

It was the first career save opportunity for righty Lane Ramsey, less than two months into his major-league life. With one out, he’d present himself with a real challenge — a Jorge Polanco would single would bring Royce Lewis to the plate representing the tying run. He would take advantage of yet another successful reverse-jinx from analyst LaTroy Hawkins, singling into the gap and pushing Polanco to third.

Could it be?

Chicago didn’t want to find out. Manager Pedro Grifol would swap out Ramsey in exchange for lefty Tanner Banks, who got Kepler looking on strikes, then walked both Carlos Correa and Farmer to push a run across. With the game firmly at 7-6, Willi Castro muscled a foul pop down the first-base line, where Andrew Vaughn put the lid on the ballgame.

COURTESY: Baseball Savant (click to expand!)

With Cleveland coming back late to win, the magic number sticks at 7, but it could be worse. The Twins still have a prime chance to win the series tomorrow, and have been on a solid roll in September, with performances like today’s from some key offensive contributors continuing to shine a bright light on October hopes.

Thanks for coming out tonight, and enjoy the rest of the weekend!


2B Jorge Polanco (2-for-4, BB, 2 R)

3B Royce Lewis (3-for-4, R, RBI, BB)

SS Carlos Correa (1-for-2, R, RBI, 3 BB)


SP Pablo “Brad Radke” Lopez (5 IP, 5 ER, 8 H, 0 BB, 8 K, 2 HR)

RP Josh Winder (2 IP, 2 ER, 3 H, 0 BB, 2 K)

C Christian Vazquez (0-for-4, K)


Credit due to zkonedog for an observation on where Pablo might have taken his inspiration from tonight.