Another tight game goes Twins' way

Strong pitching and a big hit by Josh Willingham gave them their fourth victory in a row.

view larger photos

  

– Twins lefthander Scott Diamond fielded a grounder in the sixth inning Sunday, whirled and threw to first as if the 6-foot-4 inch Justin Morneau was there. He wasn’t. It was the 5-foot-11 Jamey Carroll.

The throw sailed into foul territory. That runner, Alejandro De Aza, went to third and scored the go-ahead run on a sacrifice fly.

“I really thought I blew that one,” Diamond said. “I thought it would come down to one play, and I thought that was it in the sixth inning.”

But those mistakes have not been fatal for these Twins. They are getting enough hitting. The bullpen has been exemplary. They haven’t been blown out of games.

Sure enough, Josh Willingham cleared the bases with a double in the next inning, and Twins relievers put their foot on Chicago’s throats for nine outs while locking up a 5-3 victory and a sweep of this rain-shortened two-game series with the White Sox. The Twins come home with a four-game winning streak that has taken them over .500 at 8-7. Diamond, who led the Twins with 13 victories last season, is 1-1.

The Twins were forced to take three days off last week because of two postponed games but returned to action this weekend by taking two games from the White Sox, their once-fierce rival.

Vance Worley gave up one earned run Saturday on seven days’ rest. Sunday, Diamond gave up two runs (one earned) while coming off eight days off.

Aaron Hicks ended a 0-for-23 skid on Sunday with an RBI single and also drew a walk.

The bullpen took a blow when Adam Dunn homered off Josh Roenicke. Still, Twins relievers have a sparking 2.15 ERA. They should get three days off every couple of weeks.

“It’s huge, just knowing you have that back-end bullpen,” Joe Mauer said. “You get a couple runs and give them a lead they can take it from there. It’s a nice thing to have.”

Down 2-1 in the seventh, Trevor Plouffe walked and went to second on a passed ball. Hicks rolled a 3-2 sinker between first and second, scoring Plouffe with the tying run. Hicks stole second. Jamey Carroll reached on an infield single. Lefthander Donnie Veal replaced Matt Lindstrom, but Veal, who has had eight of his last nine pitches called balls, walked Mauer to load the bases. In came former Twins reliever Jesse Crain to face Willingham.

Crain hung a slider, and Willingham doubled over center fielder DeWayne Wise, emptying the bases to make it 5-2. The bullpen gave a run back but still performed, with Glen Perkins getting his fifth save in as many chances.

Embracing early trends is risky, but the Twins are encouraged by being 4-0 in one-run games, with three of those victories coming on the road. And Sunday’s victory was another close game they came through in.

“I said before the game, ‘Let’s win this thing 8-2 and make it a little easier on ourselves,’ ” Justin Morneau said. “Oh well. One of the main reasons Baltimore got in the playoffs last year was that they were good in one-run games. You have a winning record in those, you have a chance to finish the season with a winning record.

“It gives you confidence to get those early and, for a young team, it’s important to get off to a fast start.”

 

La Velle E. Neal III • lneal@startribune.com

  • related content

  • BOXSCORE: Twins 5, White Sox 3

    Sunday April 21, 2013

  • Twins ready for Redmond's return as Marlins manager

    Monday April 22, 2013

    CHICAGO – Mike Redmond last played for the Twins in 2009, but mentioning his name to former teammates brings smiles...

  • Series preview: Miami at Twins

    Sunday April 21, 2013

    series preview twins vs. miamiTWO-GAME SERIES AT TARGET FIELDMonday, 7:10 p.m. • FSN, 96.3-FMRHP Kevin Correia (1-1, 2.95 ERA) vs...

  • Twins-White Sox game recap

    Monday April 22, 2013

    Impact player: Josh Willingham, TwinsThe left fielder’s three-run double in the seventh inning broke open the game, enabling the Twins...

  • Postgame: Hammer's redemption and more

    Sunday April 21, 2013

    The Twins head home with a four-game winning streak after beating the White Sox twice in a rain-shortened series at US Cellular Field

  • Scott Diamond

  • Alex Rios — wearing 1983-style uniforms, as the White Sox are doing on Sunday home games this year — was tagged out by Trevor Plouffe trying to steal third.

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions
7:05 PM ET123456789RHE
MinnesotaK. Gibson (11-10)000
BaltimoreC. Tillman (11-5)000
@theBallpark
Preview | Matchup | Lineup | Log | Wrap | Box

ADVERTISEMENT

NY Yankees 0 Bottom 5th Inning
Toronto 2
Detroit 3 Top 5th Inning
Chicago WSox 6
Chicago Cubs 0 Top 2nd Inning
St. Louis 0
Cincinnati - A. Simon 3:05 PM
Pittsburgh - V. Worley
Minnesota - K. Gibson 6:05 PM
Baltimore - C. Tillman
Philadelphia - J. Williams 6:10 PM
NY Mets - B. Colon
Miami - J. Cosart 6:10 PM
Atlanta - A. Harang
Boston - A. Webster 6:10 PM
Tampa Bay - J. Odorizzi
Cleveland - T. Bauer 6:10 PM
Kansas City - J. Shields
Detroit - K. Ryan 6:10 PM
Chicago WSox - C. Bassitt
Texas - R. Ross Jr. 6:10 PM
Houston - S. Feldman
Colorado - T. Matzek 7:10 PM
Arizona - V. Nuno
Chicago Cubs - T. Wada 7:15 PM
St. Louis - M. Gonzales
Los Angeles - Z. Greinke 7:40 PM
San Diego - I. Kennedy
Milwaukee - M. Fiers 8:05 PM
San Francisco - J. Peavy
Oakland - J. Samardzija 8:05 PM
LA Angels - C. Rasmus
Washington - S. Strasburg 8:10 PM
Seattle - R. Elias
Green Bay 9/4/14 7:30 PM
Seattle
BYU 35 FINAL
Connecticut 10
(6) Jacksonville St 7 FINAL
(8) Michigan State 45
Bowling Green 31 FINAL
Western Ky 59
TX-San Antonio 27 FINAL
Houston 7
Colorado State 31 FINAL
Colorado 17
UNLV 13 FINAL
Arizona 58
Penn State 26 FINAL
UCF 24
Troy 10 3rd Qtr 4:56
UAB 31
(7) UCLA 21 3rd Qtr 1:12
Virginia 17
Western Mich 21 3rd Qtr 8:01
Purdue 30
(5) Ohio State 20 3rd Qtr 4:10
Navy 14
Appalachian St 7 3rd Qtr 2:46
Michigan 49
Ga Southern 17 3rd Qtr 8:02
NC State 10
Boston College 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
West Virginia 2:30 PM
(2) Alabama
Rice 2:30 PM
(17) Notre Dame
(10) South Dakota St 2:30 PM
(24) Missouri
Fla Atlantic 2:30 PM
(22) Nebraska
California 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Marshall 2:30 PM
Miami-Ohio
UC Davis 3:00 PM
(11) Stanford
Arkansas 3:00 PM
(6) Auburn
(16) Clemson 4:30 PM
(12) Georgia
Liberty 5:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Ohio U 5:00 PM
Kent State
Louisiana Tech 6:00 PM
(4) Oklahoma
Idaho 6:00 PM
Florida
Stephen F Austin 6:10 PM
(20) Kansas State
Fresno State 6:30 PM
(15) USC
Southern Miss 6:30 PM
Miss State
Texas-El Paso 7:00 PM
New Mexico
North Texas 7:00 PM
Texas
(1) Florida State 7:00 PM
Oklahoma State
(14) Wisconsin 8:00 PM
(13) LSU
South Dakota 9:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(25) Washington 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Utah State 8/31/14 6:00 PM
Tennessee
SMU 8/31/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
Miami-Florida 9/1/14 7:00 PM
Louisville
Arizona 9/4/14 7:00 PM
TX-San Antonio
Pittsburgh 9/5/14 6:00 PM
Boston College
Washington St 9/5/14 9:30 PM
Nevada
SMU 9/6/14 11:00 AM
North Texas
Fla Atlantic 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(2) Alabama
Buffalo 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Army
(24) Missouri 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Toledo
Arkansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tennessee
(8) McNeese State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(22) Nebraska
Central Mich 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Purdue
Akron 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
Western Ill 9/6/14 11:00 AM
(14) Wisconsin
(20) Kansas State 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Iowa State
(4) Oklahoma 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Tulsa
Western Ky 9/6/14 11:00 AM
Illinois
SC State 9/6/14 11:30 AM
(16) Clemson
Navy 9/6/14 12:00 PM
Temple
UAB 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Miss State
South Alabama 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Kent State
New Mexico St 9/6/14 1:00 PM
Georgia State
Colorado 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Massachusetts
Fresno State 9/6/14 2:00 PM
Utah
(1) Eastern Wash 9/6/14 2:00 PM
(25) Washington
(15) USC 9/6/14 2:30 PM
(11) Stanford
Ohio U 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Kentucky
Middle Tennessee 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Minnesota
Northern Ill 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Northwestern
Missouri State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Oklahoma State
Ball State 9/6/14 2:30 PM
Iowa
Maryland 9/6/14 2:30 PM
So Florida
Eastern Mich 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Florida
Georgia Tech 9/6/14 3:00 PM
Tulane
(18) Ole Miss 9/6/14 3:30 PM
Vanderbilt
Old Dominion 9/6/14 5:00 PM
NC State
(8) Michigan State 9/6/14 5:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(19) Arizona State 9/6/14 6:00 PM
New Mexico
Louisiana Tech 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Louisiana
San Jose St 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(6) Auburn
East Carolina 9/6/14 6:00 PM
(9) So Carolina
Duke 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Troy
Idaho 9/6/14 6:00 PM
ULM
(17) Sam Houston St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(13) LSU
Michigan 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(17) Notre Dame
Lamar 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(21) Texas A&M
Northwestern St 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(10) Baylor
BYU 9/6/14 6:30 PM
Texas
Citadel 9/6/14 6:30 PM
(1) Florida State
San Diego St 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(23) North Carolina
Virginia Tech 9/6/14 7:00 PM
(5) Ohio State
Memphis 9/6/14 9:00 PM
(7) UCLA
Colorado State 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Boise State
Air Force 9/6/14 9:15 PM
Wyoming
Oregon State 9/6/14 9:30 PM
Hawaii
Texas Tech 9/6/14 10:00 PM
Texas-El Paso
Colorado 3:00 PM
Seattle
New England 4:00 PM
Toronto FC
Columbus 6:30 PM
Montreal
FC Dallas 7:30 PM
Chicago
Real Salt Lake 9:30 PM
San Jose
Portland 9:30 PM
Vancouver FC
Ottawa 10 FINAL
Montreal 20
Winnipeg 8/31/14 3:00 PM
Saskatchewan
Toronto 9/1/14 12:00 PM
Hamilton
Edmonton 9/1/14 3:30 PM
Calgary
Brt Columbia 9/5/14 6:30 PM
Ottawa
Calgary 9/6/14 6:00 PM
Edmonton
Hamilton 9/7/14 12:00 PM
Montreal
Saskatchewan 9/7/14 3:00 PM
Winnipeg
Chicago 6:00 PM
Indiana
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

question of the day

Poll: How sure are you that the Twins are on the road to improving?

Weekly Question

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

 
Close