MINNEAPOLIS -- The visiting Chicago White Sox struck early and late, but the Minnesota Twins struck often on their way to a 7-4 victory at Target Field on Wednesday night.
The Twins rattled White Sox starter Chris Sale in the second inning, and Minnesota starting pitcher Kevin Correia had his best outing in June, as the Twins took the second game of the three-game series with Chicago.
Correia got back on track after a series of so-so performances (three no-decisions in June). He gave up a home run to the leadoff batter but immediately settled down and pitched 6 2/3 strong innings en route to his sixth win. Correia (6-4) gave up two runs on five hits and no walks while striking out five.
The tough-throwing Sale had an uncharacteristic outing. He threw 101 pitches in five innings, giving up four runs on eight hits, two walks (one intentional), two hit batters and a wild pitch. He struck out five.
Reliever Deunte Heath came in for Sale in the sixth, but the Twins kept hitting (for a total of 10 in the game). Joe Mauer reached on a fielder's choice, took second on a wild pitch and then scored on Josh Willingham's second hit of the game. Justin Morneau then hit his third home run of the season (his first home run in 190 plate appearances) to give the Twins a 7-1 lead.
The Sox tacked on a run in the seventh, with a two-out double by Conor Gillaspie and an RBI single by Dayan Viciedo, to chase Correia from the game.
They added two in the eighth on Tyler Flowers' single, Alexei Ramirez's double and Adam Dunn's two-run single.
But Twins closer Glen Perkins came on in the ninth and shut down the White Sox for his 18th save of the season.
The White Sox didn't take long to open the scoring. Alejandro De Aza hit a two-strike pitch over the right field fence for his fourth leadoff home run of the season (eighth of his career).
Sale had a tough second inning. Oswaldo Arcia drilled a shot back up the box that spun Sale around and then to the dirt. Two batters later, Pedro Florimon grounded to first and then ran into Sale when he covered the base. Twice the training staff visited Sale to see if he was OK.
But that was not the worst to happen: Brian Dozier hit a three-run homer with two outs to gives the Twins a 3-1 lead.
Though he stayed in the game, Sale may not have been himself, as he gave up three straight hits in the third, with Willingham scoring on Trevor Plouffe's single to make it 4-1.
NOTES: The Twins are 4-2 against the White Sox this season (outscoring them 30-25), and four of the six meetings have been decided by two runs or fewer. ... The White Sox have lost 13 of their last 15 road games to fall to 13-52 (.342), which is the lowest road winning percentage in the AL and third worst in the major leagues. ... The White Sox bullpen owns a 2.60 ERA for the month of June. It has allowed just 13 home runs this year -- the fewest in the major leagues.