MINNEAPOLIS. The Minnesota Twins maintained much-needed momentum as they entered the final five-game streak in No. 1 Cleveland this weekend.
Their feed lately looks at the task.
Carlos Correasolo home run in the first inning and Nick GordonTwo shots in the second round gave the Twins just enough to hold on to a 3-2 win to end the Kansas City Royals’ three-game streak on Thursday night and gain a head start in the AL Central race.
“Our guys know what’s at stake and our guys know what time of year it is,” said manager Rocco Baldelli. “That’s what we’re doing all this work for.”
The Twins (72-70) are four games behind the Guardians (76-66), who snapped their six-game winning streak after an 8-2 loss to Chicago in the afternoon. The White Sox (74-70) are in second place with three games.
“I’m excited because I know it’s important to us” John Duran said through an interpreter. “It’s the season right here.”
Trevor Megill (4-3), who pitched the first of five scoreless innings by five Twins pitchers, won with a perfect fifth. Duran made his seventh save in as many attempts with a tight ninth, giving up his last three batters on a sacrificial hit and two strikeouts after the first two men hit.
“Everyone can become active at any moment. No one has a role, but we are always ready whenever Rocco calls us,” he said. Michael Fulmerwho pitched a perfect eighth.
After losing nine of 11 games, including last weekend’s three-game loss to division-leading Cleveland, the Twins have rebounded against next year’s ready Royals. It was their second Kansas City sweep in four weeks. Minnesota has a 12-4 lead in the season series and the Royals have three more games to go next week.
After Michael Tayloran RBI single in the second inning and Salvador PerezHome run lead in the Twins’ fourth starter Dylan Bundythe Royals only fielded two runners up to consecutive singles against Duran to start ninth.
The Twins outscored the Royals 13–5 in the series and allowed just 13 hits.
Correa is batting .339 in his last 31 games (39 of 115) with eight home runs, 21 RBIs and 18 walks. The 11th home run of Gordon’s career was his first home run against a left-handed starter for the Royals. Daniel Lynch (4-11).
“I thought he got better over time,” manager Mike Matheny said. “We saw something in those last couple of innings that we haven’t really seen here in a while.”
In baseball’s global celebration of the late Hall of Famer, humanitarian and Puerto Rican native Roberto Clemente, two royals and six twins chose to wear his old number 21. Among them were Correa, a Puerto Rican, and Pérez, who was his team’s 2021 nominee. for the Roberto Clemente Award for Character and Community Service.
Correa and Perez, as fate would have it, both hit their 21st homers.
“You grew up in Puerto Rico learning about the history of Roberto Clemente and how great he was. I was most inspired by the people he touched off the pitch and that is why I have a foundation to help others because my idol Roberto Clemente did it,” Correa said before the game.
Gemini 1B/2B/DH Luis Arraes, who pulled out of Wednesday’s game with a hamstring tightness, was pulled from the lineup as a precaution after an MRI test showed no damage. The AL batting leader came out as a hitter in the seventh inning for Kyle Garlickwho had pain in his wrist.
Composition remained well below full composition, with 2B Jorge Polanco (knee inflammation), MV Byron Buxton (hip deformity), LF Alex Kirilloff (inflammation of the wrist) and RF Max Kepler (bruised leg, sore wrist) leads the list of eliminated players. Kepler is the only one who was not included in the list of the wounded.
“We need to bring back guys who can play. Bringing back guys that can play and then maybe they need a day or two after they play the game, that’s not going to help us as much as we think,” Baldelli said ahead of the game.
Gemini: RHP Bailey Ober (0-2, 4.11 ERA) will be off the injured list for the series opener in Cleveland. He has only made seven starts this season due to a groin strain, and his last outing was on June 1st. Triston Mackenzie (10-11, 3.05) fields for the Guardians. Last week, he beat the Twins with seven close innings.
DETROIT – Andrew Wong won his first career Grand Slam, and on Sunday the Chicago White Sox beat the Detroit Tigers 11-5.
“This trip went in the right direction,” right-hander from Chicago. Vince Velasquez said. “We’re taking the right steps to hurt Cleveland at home.”
The White Sox are trying to capture AL Central’s leading Guardians, but they are running out of time. They are 3 1/2 games behind Cleveland after the Guardian lost 3-0 to Minnesota.
Chicago hosts Cleveland on Tuesday night, opening a three-game streak.
“It’s September now – everyone is tired, everyone’s legs and bodies hurt,” Vaughn said. “But we just have to give it our all every day, no matter what you have.”
The White Sox improved to 12-4 against the last-placed Tigers of the season. The teams will play again next weekend in Chicago.
The defending champions AL Central seized control with five runs in the fifth. Sheets snapped tie with a loaded base walk against Drew Hutchison (2-9) and Vaughn made it 7-2 as he moved the 1-2 slider from James Foley deep to left center for his commanding 17th homer.
“That (home run) was big,” White Sox acting manager Miguel Cairo said. “In a bullpen with short staff, it was nice to immediately put on a big number and give the bullpen a breather.”
The White Sox (76-71) have recorded 31 homers in their last 19 games. They’re 27-5 when they’ve hit at least two homers.
“He’s been doing it all year since he joined the bullpen,” Cairo said. “He was a guy who came in and shut down opportunities. This was our plan.”
“I was about to go on deck and it sounded like a gunshot,” Vaughn said. “That one was special. He can hit a few baseballs far.”
Jimenez added a double RBI in the eighth. He’s 17 of 43 with five homers and 16 RBIs over his last 11 games.
Willy Castro hit a two-run homer for Detroit in the first, and Javier Baez added a solo shot in the eighth. Baez returned to the designated hitter lineup after dealing with knee swelling following an awkward plate game on Friday.
Hutchison was charged with six runs and seven hits in 4 2/3 innings in front of a crowd of 14,435. He has only one win in his last 13 matches.
“There’s a fine line between pitching aggressively and giving yourself a chance to get out of this (fifth) inning,” Tigers manager AJ Hinch said. “And that inning just kept going up and up and it obviously exploded.”
Velasquez allowed two runs and three hits in four innings in his first start since June 9. Velasquez was forced to act because Johnny Cueto deals with illness.
“By giving up a home run, I take all the blame for it, but once I calmed down and started to sort it out, it was a good, easy, smooth ride,” Velasquez said. “You just have to always be on the lookout.”
Tanner Banks (2-0) gave up three opportunities to win.
“It was so great to see our bullpen,” Cairo said. “Everyone contributes. And everyone in the roster does little things to win matches.”
MOVING THE COMPOSITION
White Sox posted pitcher Joe Kelly on the family leave list. Banks was recalled from Triple-A Charlotte.
White Sox: CF Louis Robert (hand) was disabled as a precaution. Cairo said that Robert could return on Tuesday. … Right side Michael Kopech (shoulder), who was placed in a 15-day IL on Saturday, said he was closed as a precaution and hoped to be back before the end of the season.
White Sox: There was no word on a starting pitcher for either team on Tuesday. Chicago pitching plan remains in motion after Cueto falls ill.