Twins-White Sox Preview
The Minnesota Twins still have a significant deficit to make up
in the division, but more games against the Chicago White Sox could
The Twins will try to tie a franchise record with their 10th
straight win over the White Sox on Saturday when the teams continue
their series in Chicago.
Minnesota (40-47) rallied from an early 5-1 deficit Friday to
defeat Chicago 8-5 for its ninth straight win between the teams and
sixth this season.
The Twins, who won 10 in a row in the series in 1965-66, scored
six runs in the fourth inning to complete the comeback. Luke Hughes
hit a three-run homer to cap the scoring as Minnesota went on to
win for the eighth time in 10 games overall.
Minnesota, which has won 28 of its last 34 against the White
Sox, has pulled within 1 1/2 games of Chicago for third place in
the AL Central. The Twins are seven games behind first-place
“I think everybody is aware of where we are right now,
especially with how important this series is,” starter Nick
Blackburn told the Twins’ official website. “If we can take the
series (Saturday), it’ll be a great four-game trip for us.”
Joe Mauer had two hits and scored twice Friday. He’s 21 for 39
with six doubles and two home runs in his last nine games at
Chicago while improving his lifetime average at U.S. Cellular Field
to .371. He had three hits in Thursday’s series opener.
Chicago (43-47) lost its fourth straight Friday as Gavin Floyd
was chased in the fourth. Adam Dunn hit a two-run homer in the
first, but went hitless in his final four at-bats while striking
“Hopefully we’re going to find our swagger after the All-Star
break,” said Dunn, who is in a 3-for-38 slump with 22 strikeouts
his last 11 games. “I feel like me and Alex (Rios), we’ve been as
bad as you can possibly be. … We’re putting it all on us in the
Rios went 1 for 4 on Friday and is batting .214.
Mark Buehrle (6-5, 3.66 ERA) will try to end the White Sox’s
slide. He has a 2.91 ERA over his last 11 starts.
Buehrle hasn’t earned a decision in the last three, but Chicago
has won them all. On Monday against Kansas City, he allowed three
runs in seven innings of a 5-4 victory.
The left-hander pitched well against the Twins on June 16, but
was charged with the loss. He gave up one run – a solo homer by
Michael Cuddyer in the second – and three hits in seven innings of
a 1-0 defeat.
Cuddyer’s 96 at-bats against Buehrle are the most of any player.
He’s batting .344 with three homers and 10 doubles in the matchup,
while Mauer is hitting .224.
Brian Duensing (6-7, 4.25) will counter for Minnesota, looking
to win his third straight start. He pitched a six-hitter, striking
out seven, in a 7-0 victory over Tampa Bay on Monday.
The left-hander is 4-0 with a 2.50 ERA in four starts and six
relief appearances against the White Sox. In one start last year,
he gave up two runs in six innings of a 9-3 victory Sept. 15.
Carlos Quentin is 7 for 12 with three homers against Duensing,
but Dunn is 2 for 59 with 28 strikeouts against left-handers this