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Homers power Twins' sweep of White Sox

The SportsXchange

CHICAGO -- The Chicago White Sox continue to change the face of their team, but their ballpark remains a haven for hitters.

Hours after the White Sox traded Alex Rios to Texas, Oswaldo Arcia hit a go-ahead home run in the top of the 10th to give the Minnesota Twins a 3-2 win over Chicago to sweep Friday's doubleheader.

Arcia, who also homered in Minnesota's 7-5 Game 1 win, led off the 10th and hit a Dylan Axelrod (4-9) pitch to straightaway center to give the Twins a lead.

The Twins homered seven times in the two games, including three in Game 2, and swept the doubleheader despite striking out 25 times.

"It's never changed. The ball flies here during the summer. We've all known that," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said. "If you get the ball up and you get the barrel on it, it'll fly. That's just the way it is."

While that has been a constant at U.S. Cellular Field, so has losing this season for the White Sox. And because of that, they dealt away one of their veteran stalwarts as they try to rebuild.

Rios had been claimed off waivers on Thursday by Texas, and Chicago sent him and cash considerations to the Rangers for a player to be named or cash.

Avisail Garcia was recalled to replace Rios, and he pinch-hit for Blake Tekotte in the seventh, striking out on three pitches.

Garcia was acquired from Detroit as part of a three-team deal for Jake Peavy and was hit by a Glen Perkins pitch to start the bottom of the 10th. He eventually got to third but was stranded when Alexei Ramirez flied out to right to end the game and give Chicago its second loss after sweeping a three-game series from the New York Yankees.

"It's a different day for a lot of these guys when you see a guy like Rios leave, basically 30 minutes before the (first) game," White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. "It is tough for a lot of guys that enjoyed him being here, enjoyed having him play here. He is a good guy, good teammate. That's always tough to see a guy like him go."

Garcia was with Triple-A Charlotte and didn't arrive in Chicago until early in the game but wanted to play anyway.

"I feel pretty excited now because I got a new family now, new guys, news friends," Garcia said. "I was just excited to say hi to everybody. I am really happy to be here."

Even with that excitement, the White Sox couldn't stop Minnesota from winning for the sixth time in its last eight games.

After Justin Morneau hit two of Minnesota's homers in Game 1, including a go-ahead grand slam in the seventh inning, the Twins got solo home runs from Chris Herrmann, Josh Willingham and Arcia.

Herrmann gave Minnesota a 1-0 lead in the fourth before Ramirez tied the score in the bottom of the inning. Blake Tekotte put Chicago in front 2-1 in the sixth with his first-career homer, but Willingham tied the score in the eighth against Matt Lindstrom before Arcia's home run in the 10th.

Brian Duensing (6-1) pitched a scoreless ninth and won both games of the doubleheader, becoming the first pitcher to do that since the Yankees' Luis Vizcaino on July 21, 2007, against Tampa Bay.

Liam Hendriks, who was Minnesota's 26th man for the doubleheader and will be going back to Triple-A Rochester, pitched 6 1/3 innings and allowed two solo home runs.

Perkins got his 28th save in 31 tries and helped Minnesota win two on a day the White Sox hit four homers of their own, including two in the second game.

"You try not to think about (the home runs), to be honest," Duensing said. "Once you start thinking about the ball going out of the ballpark or giving up homers, that's usually when bad stuff will happen."

White Sox starter Charlie Leesman was making his major-league debut and, like Hendriks, was his team's 26th man. Also like Hendriks, Leesman will be headed back to Triple-A after a solid outing when he went five-plus innings and allowed one run while striking out eight despite walking five.

"From the first pitch to the last pitch, it was the most intense and exhilarating feeling I ever felt," Leesman said. "It was awesome."

Not much else has been awesome for Chicago, and that's why Rios was the latest veteran dealt on an ever-changing roster. But the park, as it showed, is still giving up plenty of home runs.

"It's a great park for a hitter," Hendriks said. "It makes you as a pitcher try to keep everything down and keep everything on the ground. Other than the two, I feel like I did a pretty good job getting ahead of guys and making them feel uncomfortable."

NOTES: White Sox OF Dayan Viciedo was a late scratch for Game 1 after originally being slated to bat eighth and play left field because of discomfort in his left thumb. ... The Twins placed C Ryan Doumit on the seven-day concussion disabled list and activated Willingham, who had missed the last 33 games after surgery on his left knee, from the DL. Doumit took a foul tip off his mask on Sunday against Houston but didn't say he was suffering from the hit until Wednesday. "I was disappointed that I have to go on the disabled list, but the flip side of it is I understand the seriousness of head injuries and it's better to be safe than sorry, to err on the side of caution," Doumit said. ... The White Sox recalled Tekotte from Charlotte to replace OF Casper Wells, who was claimed on waivers on Thursday by Philadelphia. ... Minnesota RHP Mike Pelfrey (4-9, 5.23 ERA) will face Andre Rienzo (0-0, 1.38 ERA) on Saturday.

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