Twins avoid sweep in Chicago behind Diamond's strong outing

The lefthander has struggled to regain last year’s form, but his 6⅓ solid innings helped keep the White Sox at bay.

 

– Scott Diamond resembled the pitcher who went 12-9 last season on Wednesday, not the one who is 6-11 this year.

By attacking the strike zone early in the count, Diamond was able to induce plenty of ground balls and zip through easy innings. He set the tone for the Twins, who beat the White Sox 4-3 to avoid being swept in the three-game series at U.S. Cellular Field.

“It’s taken a long time,” Diamond said. “I’m a little disappointed in that.”

Diamond had bone chips removed from his elbow during the offseason and was a little behind the other pitchers when he reported to spring training. He tried to cram a full throwing program into a smaller window than normal. Eventually he backed off, then wasn’t effective when he took the mound. He was 5-10, and frustrated, when he was sent down Aug. 1. He’s back up for September and, on Wednesday, broke a personal five-game losing streak.

Diamond held the White Sox to three runs over 6⅓ innings on five hits, two walks and no strikeouts. He’s far from a power pitcher, and Wednesday marked the seventh consecutive start in which he’s gotten one or no strikeouts.

“I might have created some bad habits because of [rushing during spring training], but we are slowly getting rid of them,” he said. “It has taken just a little longer than I wanted.”

Diamond entered the seventh having given up only one run, but Jordan Danks hit a two-out, two-run single off him as Chicago pulled within 4-3. Still, Twins manager Ron Gardenhire was pleased.

“He attacked the strike zone a lot better and did his job,” Gardenhire said. “That was a huge performance and a confidence booster for him.”

The bullpen took over, with Casey Fien and Jared Burton setting up Glen Perkins for his 36th save.

Hendriks out, De Vries in

After going 1-3 in eight starts with a 6.87 ERA, the Twins have seen enough of Liam Hendriks, at least for now.

Hendriks has officially been lifted from the starting rotation and replaced with righthander Cole De Vries. De Vries, who is from Eden Prairie and played for the Gophers, replaced Hendriks in the first inning Monday and pitched five innings.

It’s been a challenging year for De Vries, who was in the Opening Day starting rotation when he landed on the disabled list because of a forearm strain. He didn’t pitch in a game until late May, then had to work his way up to Class AAA Rochester, where he was 3-4 with a 7.02 ERA. He threw seven shutout innings in his final start for the Red Wings before being called up to the Twins. Now he gets a chance to prove he belongs in consideration for a spot on the 2014 staff.

Fan interest

The Twins still announce crowds of 25,000-plus at games despite the team being on the verge of losing 90-plus games for the third consecutive season. Teams in the playoff race, such as Oakland, Tampa Bay and Cleveland, aren’t drawing many fans.

During a recent 10-game homestand that included games against the Rays and Rangers, Oakland drew only three crowds of more than 20,000 and one of more than 24,000.

Oakland fans usually step up in crunch time, but haven’t yet.

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MinnesotaK. Gibson (11-10)000
BaltimoreC. Tillman (11-5)000
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NY Yankees - LP: M. Pineda 0 FINAL
Toronto - WP: D. Hutchison 2
Detroit - LP: M. Scherzer 3 FINAL
Chicago WSox - WP: C. Sale 6
Chicago Cubs - WP: F. Doubront 5 FINAL
St. Louis - LP: J. Masterson 1
Cincinnati - LP: A. Simon 2 FINAL
Pittsburgh - WP: V. Worley 3
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
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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 FINAL
UAB 48
(7) UCLA 28 FINAL
Virginia 20
Western Mich 34 FINAL
Purdue 43
(5) Ohio State 34 FINAL
Navy 17
Appalachian St 14 FINAL
Michigan 52
Ga Southern 23 FINAL
NC State 24
Boston College 30 FINAL
Massachusetts 7
West Virginia 23 4th Qtr 6:49
(2) Alabama 33
Rice 17 FINAL
(17) Notre Dame 48
(10) South Dakota St 18 FINAL
(24) Missouri 38
Fla Atlantic 7 4th Qtr 5:10
(22) Nebraska 55
California 31 4th Qtr 2:00
Northwestern 24
Marshall 35 4th Qtr 6:25
Miami-Ohio 27
UC Davis 0 4th Qtr 8:22
(11) Stanford 45
Arkansas 21 4th Qtr 9:55
(6) Auburn 38
(16) Clemson 21 2nd Qtr 7:28
(12) Georgia 14
Liberty 7 2nd Qtr 14:41
(23) North Carolina 14
Ohio U 7 2nd Qtr 10:47
Kent State 7
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
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Oklahoma State
(14) Wisconsin 8:00 PM
(13) LSU
South Dakota 9:30 PM
(3) Oregon
(25) Washington 9:30 PM
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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 0 FINAL
Seattle 1
New England 3 2nd Half 5:00
Toronto FC 0
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
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