MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Jose Berrios won his fourth straight start for Minnesota and Miguel Sano homered for the second straight game as the Twins beat the Chicago White Sox 4-2 on Wednesday night behind two of their brightest young stars.
Berrios (7-1) finished eight innings for a second consecutive turn in the rotation where he’s quickly become the ace, striking out eight with just four hits and one walk against him. The White Sox had one single over their last 18 at-bats against the 22-year-old right-hander, who lowered his ERA to 2.67.
Sano hit his 18th home run, tying the game to start the third inning against David Holmberg (1-1) with an opposite-field drive to right-center. The 24-year-old Sano, who took a break from third base to serve as the designated hitter, is third in the AL with 52 RBIs.
Brandon Kintzler pitched a scoreless ninth inning for the second straight night, notching his 19th save in 22 opportunities.
AL batting leader Avisail Garcia put the White Sox in front with an RBI single in the first inning, and Adam Engel came home during a groundball double play in the third inning after a leadoff double.
But Berrios was in command the whole time, as he’s been in most of his appearances since being summoned from Triple-A. He threw his lively fastball in the right places at the right times and sent many a White Sox hitter walking slowly back to the dugout after a swing and a miss at his exceptional curveball.
The Twins improved to 7-3 against the White Sox this season, using their last-place rival for a much-needed lift this week following a four-game sweep here over the weekend by division-leading Cleveland.
Holmberg lasted only 3 1/3 innings, his shortest of five starts after being promoted from the bullpen. The left-hander gave up seven hits and two walks while striking out four. Two of the four runs he allowed were unearned, due to a fielding error on shortstop Tim Anderson on Robbie Grossman’s grounder following Sano’s homer.
Max Kepler added an RBI single in that decisive third inning, and Ehire Adrianza drove in a run with a fielder’s choice grounder.
Brian Dozier had an RBI double for the Twins and reached base three times.
White Sox: 3B Todd Frazier was on the bench and Garcia was the DH for rest, with the team having begun on Tuesday a stretch of 16 straight days with a game.
Twins: LHP Glen Perkins (shoulder strain) felt discomfort after throwing in extended spring training on Monday. He was diagnosed with biceps tendinitis and shut down for a week, when he’ll be re-evaluated. … Both LHP Hector Santiago (shoulder strain) and RHP Phil Hughes (shoulder weakness) pitched for Triple-A Rochester on Wednesday to begin rehab assignments without trouble. Santiago will join the Twins in Cleveland on Friday.
White Sox: LHP Jose Quintana (3-8, 5.07 ERA) will take the mound on Thursday afternoon, coming off one of his best starts of what’s so far been his worst of six major league seasons. Quintana, an All-Star in 2016, is 0-4 in his last five appearances against the Twins.
Twins: LHP Nik Turley (0-1, 12.46 ERA) will take another turn in the rotation in the series finale, despite 17 hits, four walks and 12 runs allowed over 8 2/3 innings in his first two major league starts.
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