White Sox win 4-1, Twins fall to 0-7 in home opener
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Austin Jackson hit a two-run, two-out single in the fourth inning one pitch after just missing a grand slam, lifting the Chicago White Sox to a 4-1 victory Monday that spoiled Minnesota's home opener and stuck the winless Twins with their seventh straight loss.
Carlos Quintana (1-0) completed six smooth innings with one run allowed for the White Sox, who have won five of their first seven games. Todd Frazier sparked a second-inning rally with a leadoff single and later added an RBI double.
Twins starter Kyle Gibson (0-2) was charged with only one earned run over 5 2/3 innings, but he was in trouble often and threw a wild pitch that set up Frazier to score on a single by Brett Lawrie.
The Twins, off to the worst start since the franchise moved to Minnesota in 1961, were 0 for 6 with runners in scoring position and are a league-worst 5 for 55 in those situations this season.
The wind gusted up to 35 mph on a 42-degree afternoon. Hotdog wrappers occasionally tumbled across the grass and the outfielders were masked up for protection - but this was a chilly start for the Twins in more ways than one. When Kurt Suzuki's bunt attempt popped up and relief pitcher Matt Albers caught it for an easy double play in the seventh inning, boos bounced around the ballpark.
Players spoke confidently before the game about not overreacting to the opening skid, but manager Paul Molitor acknowledged the ''heaviness'' of the way they've started the season.
The White Sox, after the spring-training controversy involving departed veteran Adam LaRoche and the clubhouse presence of his teenage son, Drake, have been playing burden-free baseball so far with solid results.
Jackson has a hit or a run in every game. His drive down the left field line missed a grand slam by a few inches, squeezing between the limestone wall and the foul pole in the fourth. He put the White Sox up 3-0 with his smash up the middle on the next pitch.
The Twins have played less than 5 percent of their schedule, but a turnaround could be tough. According to STATS research, no major league team has ever started 0-7 and qualified for the postseason. Three teams did so after dropping their first six games: Pittsburgh (1974), Cincinnati (1995) and Tampa Bay (2011).
With a computerized controller strapped around his waist and two battery packs secured under a vest that helps pump blood to his heart, Hall of Famer Rod Carew threw out the ceremonial first pitch less than seven months after suffering a massive heart attack. He's waiting to see if he's healthy enough to become a candidate for a heart transplant.
''I really had to hold myself back from crying,'' Carew said. ''It was just a tremendous moment, a tremendous honor.''
White Sox: RF Adam Eaton was reinstated from the paternity list after missing one game while his wife, Katie, gave birth to their first child, a boy named Brayden. RHP Michael Ynoa was optioned to Double-A Birmingham to make room on the roster.
Twins: RF Danny Santana (hamstring) is on the 15-day disabled list.
White Sox: LHP Carlos Rodon (0-1, 2.57 ERA) will pitch Wednesday on six days of rest, after the series takes a break Tuesday. He struck out six in seven innings in his season debut at Oakland last week.
Twins: RHP Phil Hughes (0-1, 4.50 ERA) will take the mound Wednesday. He gave up one run and just six baserunners over eight innings for the win June 24, 2015, the last time he faced the White Sox.