CHICAGO (AP) — Erik Johnson pitched six scoreless innings to earn his first major league victory, and the Chicago White Sox scored seven runs in the first and coasted to a 12-1 win over the Minnesota Twins on Monday night.
The White Sox, who had lost six straight and 15 of 17, broke out of their offensive funk against Liam Hendriks and the Twins. Chicago scored a season high in runs and posted its biggest margin of victory this year.
After not having led since beating the Tigers 5-1 a week earlier, the White Sox had six hits in the first. Alejandro De Aza and Alexei Ramirez both reached base twice and scored in the inning.
Ramirez went 4 for 4 with his fifth home run and three runs batted in and was a triple short of the cycle. Adam Dunn, Dayan Viciedo and Jordan Danks also homered.
During their skid — that included four straight losses to Cleveland — the White Sox scored a total of seven runs. They matched that in the first inning and equaled their eighth-inning performance against Detroit on July 9.
It was the White Sox’s highest-scoring first inning since they scored eight against Detroit on April 21, 2002.
Johnson (1-2), whose contract was purchased from Triple-A Charlotte on Sept. 3, was the beneficiary of the offense.
He had allowed 11 runs — but only five earned — in his two losses. Johnson blanked the Twins and gave up only four hits. He struck out eight and walked two.
Hendriks (1-3) and the Twins couldn’t maintain momentum after stunning playoff-contending Tampa Bay on Sunday.
After rallying from a three-run deficit one day earlier, the Twins were routed. Hendriks struggled badly and extended his winless streak to three starts.
He got only two outs against Chicago and gave up seven runs, five hits, and three walks in his 10-batter outing.
It marked the first time the Twins allowed that many runs in the first inning since the opening game of a doubleheader against Kansas City on July 28, 1997.
Chicago scored its seven runs without an extra-base hit. Conor Gillaspie, Paul Konerko, Viciedo and Ramirez had one-run singles, Gordon Beckham had a two-run single, and De Aza drove in a run with a walk, ending Hendriks’ night.
In the second, replay confirmed Danks’ double when he hit Cole De Vries’ pitch off the yellow line in deep right-center field.
In the fourth, Dunn hit his 32nd homer, and Viciedo followed with his 13th to give the White Sox a 9-0 lead. Danks connected in the sixth for his fourth homer, and Ramirez’s shot in the seventh made it 12-0.
Minnesota avoided its 14th shutout on Chris Parmelee’s eighth-inning single.
NOTES: Justin Morneau was announced as Minnesota’s nominee for the Roberto Clemente Award, even though he was traded to Pittsburgh Pirates at the end of August. “For what he’s done up in our community, how much time he’s given raising money for all the organizations he’s attached to, he’s definitely the guy from this ball club we would recommend,” manager Ron Gardenhire said. … White Sox OF Avisail Garcia wasn’t in the lineup for the second straight day. Garcia’s wife, Anakarina, gave birth to the couple’s first child, a daughter named Annarella, on Monday. . Dunn said this has been “another wasted season” because Chicago will miss the playoffs. Dunn has never been in the postseason. . Minnesota’s Mike Pelfrey (5-12, 5.31) will face against Chicago’s Jose Quintana (7-6, 3.56) on Tuesday.
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