Twins lose a wild one to White Sox
By Jack McCarthy
CHICAGO — Even with two strikes, Leury Garcia still had the green light to go on Wednesday.
The White Sox second baseman punched a critical bunt down the third-base line to lead off the bottom of the 11th inning, eventually reached third and scored on right-handed reliever Samuel Deduno’s wild pitch with two outs in an 7-6 come-from-behind victory over the Minnesota Twins.
“It was the perfect time to do it,” said Garcia, who made his own call to bunt. “That was me. It was two strikes and you’ve got to get on base.”
With a full count on designated hitter Adam Dunn, Deduno fired a pitch that escaped from catcher Kurt Suzuki as Garcia scampered home for the winning run.
“We’re grinders,” Chicago center fielder Adam Eaton. “Any way, shape or form we get the job done. It’s not over. We can battle back.”
Right-handed reliever Ronald Belisario (1-0) got the victory after working 1 1/3 innings as the White Sox won their second straight before a sparse crowd on a sunny but cold afternoon at U.S. Cellular Field.
Deduno (0-1) took the loss in 2/3 innings of relief after giving up a hit and one earned run while walking out two, striking out two, throwing two wild pitches and committing a balk.
“Ultimately, you have the lead and you get the ball to your closer, you feel pretty good about it,” Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. “It just didn’t work out. We didn’t finish the game off, and then it’s take your pick after that. It ended in a crazy way with Sammy not being able to throw the ball close enough to the plate.”
The White Sox scored two runs in the bottom of the ninth against Twins left-handed reliever Glen Perkins to forge a 6-6 tie.
Garcia drove in pinch-runner Adrian Nieto to cut the deficit to 6-5. After reaching third on Perkins’ wild pitch, pinch-hitter Dayan Viciedo scored the tying run when Eaton grounded to third on a fielder’s choice.
The rally ended when Dunn grounded to first.
Third baseman Trevor Plouffe and Suzuki each had three hits for the Twins. Shortstop Alexi Ramirez had two hits and two RBIs for the White Sox and reached base four times.
White Sox starter Felipe Paulino struggled in the second inning. He loaded the bases with one out while walking shortstop Pedro Florimon to score right fielder Oswaldo Arcia for a 1-0 Twins lead.
Paulino then struck out leadoff batter Brian Dozier and coaxed first baseman Joe Mauer into an inning-ending groundout.
The White Sox replied with three runs in the bottom of the inning.
Ramirez doubled home right fielder Avisail Garcia and left fielder Alejandro De Aza with one out. The White Sox then loaded the bases when starting pitcher Kevin Correia misplayed Leury Garcia’s sacrifice bunt.
Eaton’s RBI sacrifice fly scored Ramirez to make it 3-1, but catcher Tyler Flowers was tagged out to end the inning after a relay.
The Twins got one back in the third when left fielder Jason Kubel doubled with one out and scored on Plouffe’s single to center.
Paulino departed after 5 1/3 innings with Suzuki on third. Rookie right-hander Maikel Cleto coaxed a popup to short left by Florimon and Dozier popped out in foul territory.
The White Sox used three pitchers in a three-run Twins seventh.
Right-hander Nate Jones, the second pitcher, walked designated hitter Josh Willingham, gave up a ground-rule double to Kubel that scored Mauer and allowed a Plouffe single that brought home pinch-runner Jason Bartlett and Kubel for a 5-3 lead.
Right-hander Daniel Webb — the inning’s third pitcher — induced Arcia to hit a fly to center for an apparent out. But Eaton dropped the ball after the catch and Gardenhire challenged the call.
After an approximately six-minute delay, Major League Baseball replay officials in New York ruled Eaton committed an error that left runners and first and second with none out.
Webb struck out Suzuki swinging, Plouffe was tagged at the plate after the relay from De Aza to Flowers on a single by center fielder Aaron Hicks single and Webb struck out Florimon the close the inning.
Dunn cut the deficit to 5-4 with a two-out homer to center in the eighth.
The Twins made it 6-4 on Suzuki’s two-out double in the ninth that scored Plouffe.
Paulino allowed seven hits, two runs (one earned), struck out six and walked two. Correia worked six full innings and allowed three runs (two earned) and five hits. He struck out five and walked two.
“(Correia) was great,” Gardenhire said. “He had the inning where he gave up some runs, but other than that he threw the ball great. But then we had the long inning where we had the challenge, the 20-second challenge that took a long time.”
NOTES: Wednesday’s loss left Twins manager Ron Gardenhire two wins from 1,000 for his 12-year major league career, all with Minnesota. He will be the fifth active manager to reach the milestone and 60th all time. ... RHP Brian Duensing was scheduled to rejoin the Twins on Wednesday night after his wife, Lisa, delivered Boston Matthew Duensing, the couple’s second child, on Monday in Omaha, Neb. ... Catcher Kurt Suzuki had three more hits on Wednesday and is batting .416 (5-for-12) through the season’s first two games.