Twenty runs in Game 1 qualified as a barrage, but it was hardly a breeze. Then the Twins kept pounding, and a Game 2 shutout made it two out of two.
CHICAGO The plan was to finish the day with two wins. The path taken couldn't have been dreamed up by David Chase.
The Twins took two games from the White Sox by scores of 20-14 in the first game and 12-0 in the second game. It was during the second game that Justin Morneau became the fourth Twin in history to hit three homers in one game, joining Bob Allison, Harmon Killebrew and Tony Oliva.
Before that feat, two separate crowds at U.S. Cellular Field witnessed a grand slam and career-high seven RBI by Jason Kubel, five RBI by Joe Mauer, and an early 10-run lead that was whittled down enough to force Joe Nathan to warm up in the ninth.
That was just the first game.
In the second game, Matt Garza threw six shutout innings in his season debut. Mike Redmond threw a scare into everyone when he was hit in the head with a bat during Jim Thome's follow-through. He was bleeding at home plate and needed seven stitches.
Then the Twins started bashing, hitting six home runs in the second game, including homers by Morneau in the first, third and seventh innings. Morneau had a chance for a fourth homer when he batted in the eighth but flied out.
"Crazy," Twins outfielder Michael Cuddyer said. "The only way you can describe it is crazy."
Still, the Twins got their two victories and moved within six games of AL Central division co-leaders Detroit and Cleveland. And the second victory gave Twins manager Ron Gardenhire his 500th since taking over the team in 2002.
Gardenhire was doused with water moments after the game.
"I've know Gardy a long time," Twins outfielder Torii Hunter said. "The eyes were starting to water a little bit. I could tell it meant a lot to him."
Morneau will have plenty of memories from Friday. His first homer, a three-run shot to right in the first off Gavin Floyd, was the 100th of his career. His second homer, a bases-empty blast to center in the third, also came off Floyd.
Morneau's third homer went out to left-center off Boone Logan with one on in the seventh. He then faced hard-throwing lefty Matt Thornton in the eighth and swung wildly at the first pitch and missed. He tried to compose himself but eventually flied out.
The announced crowd of 32,426 applauded as he returned to the dugout.
"Those are days you just put in the memory bank and never expect to happen again," said Morneau, who joined Albert Belle, Jeff Bagwell and Mark Cameron as the only players to hit at least three homers in U.S. Cellular Field.
After losing three of four games in New York to the Yankees, the Twins came to Chicago knowing they needed to win three of four to finish their 11-game road trip with a winning record.
The came out in the first game with a season-high 20 runs on 21 hits. Who knew they had something left for the second game?
When Redmond was hit with the bat in the first inning, the Twins were forced to move Joe Mauer from designated hitter to catcher, which eliminated their use of the DH for the night.
Even with Garza going 0-for-2 at the plate, the Twins scored 12 runs on 15 hits.
|NY Yankees - WP: N. Eovaldi||4||FINAL|
|Boston - LP: W. Miley||2|
|Chicago WSox - LP: H. Noesi||3||FINAL|
|Minnesota - WP: R. Nolasco||5|
|Pittsburgh - LP: J. Hughes||1||FINAL|
|St. Louis - WP: C. Villanueva||2|
|Milwaukee - WP: M. Fiers||6||FINAL|
|Chicago Cubs - LP: J. Arrieta||1|
|LA Angels - LP: H. Santiago||4||FINAL|
|San Francisco - WP: T. Hudson||5|
|Philadelphia - LP: C. Hamels||0||FINAL|
|Miami - WP: D. Haren||7|
|Toronto - WP: A. Sanchez||11||FINAL|
|Cleveland - LP: C. Kluber||4|
|Tampa Bay - LP: C. Archer||0||FINAL|
|Baltimore - WP: M. Gonzalez||4|
|Cincinnati - WP: J. Marquis||8||FINAL|
|Atlanta - LP: E. Stults||4|
|Washington - WP: G. Gonzalez||1||FINAL|
|NY Mets - LP: J. Niese||0|
|Detroit - WP: D. Price||2||FINAL|
|Kansas City - LP: E. Volquez||1|
|Seattle - LP: T. Walker||4||FINAL|
|Houston - WP: C. McHugh||11|
|Oakland - LP: R. Cook||7||FINAL|
|Texas - WP: K. Kela||8|
|Colorado - LP: J. De La Rosa||2||FINAL|
|San Diego - WP: B. Morrow||4|
|Arizona - LP: E. Marshall||4||FINAL|
|Los Angeles - WP: J. Nicasio||6|
|Red Bull New York||1||FINAL|