White Sox can’t hold lead, lose again to surging Twins to wrap up homestand

CHICAGO (AP) — The Chicago White Sox will be happy to stop playing the Minnesota Twins for a while.

Until just after the Fourth of July, to be exact.

Perhaps the Twins will have cooled off by then.

Max Kepler and José Miranda hit run-scoring singles to put Minnesota ahead in the seventh, and the Twins rallied late for their 10th straight win, 10-5 over the White Sox on Wednesday at Guaranteed Rate Field.

Seven of Minnesota’s 10 straight wins have come against the White Sox. Minnesota began its winning streak with a four-game sweep of Chicago at Target Field in Minneapolis. Wednesday’s victory completed another Twins sweep, this one a three-game set in Chicago.

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The White Sox dropped to a major-league worst 6-25, including 2-18 against the American League Central. They also concluded their six-game homestand at 3-3 after sweeping the Tampa Bay Rays over the weekend.

After an off-day Thursday, the White Sox open a six-game road trip with a three-game weekend series in St. Louis against the Cardinals, beginning Friday at 7:15 p.m.

Late lead gone

The White Sox led the Twins on Wednesday, 4-2, through five innings.

But the Twins tied it at 4-4 in the sixth, scoring two unearned runs with two outs when Willi Castro’s routine grounder ticked off the glove of shortstop Paul DeJong and rolled between his legs for an error.

“The ball was spinning like crazy and (baserunner Trevor) Larnach at second base did a good job of blocking my view,” DeJong said. “The ball just kind of took off sideways on me and I whiffed, and unfortunately it cost us two runs.”

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Miranda added his third hit for another RBI in a four-run ninth that put it away for the Twins, whose winning streak is their longest since June 2008 and the longest in the major leagues this season. Castro added an RBI single to cap a three-hit day that included a double and triple.

“It’s hard not to feel good,” Twins manager Rocco Baldelli said. “But we really kept competing as the game went on, another one of the games that didn’t come easy.

“It wasn’t the most glorious maybe to watch … but just watching the team, just kind of grind though the middle and later parts of the game with good at-bats, making plays, guys coming in and pitching, throwing strikes.”

Alex Kirilloff hit a solo shot off Chicago starter Chris Flexen, and Ryan Jeffers knocked in two runs with a double for Minnesota, which has beaten Chicago eight straight times overall dating to last season.

Tommy Pham hit his first homer with the White Sox and added an RBI double. He’s batting .375 with Chicago in six games since joining the team last Friday.

Kory Lee also went deep, and Robbie Grossman doubled twice and drove in a run for the White Sox.

Minnesota’s Bailey Ober (3-1) scuffled to the win, despite allowing four runs on six hits in six innings. Ober said he was still feeling the “low energy” effects of an illness he has had since last week, but his teammates came through with run support.

“You can just tell there’s not a whole lot of pressure being put on ourselves,” Ober said. “I feel that’s the biggest thing, is just leaning on each other and trusting our teammates.”

Flexen allowed two runs on four hits in five innings and left with a 4-2 lead. Dominic Leone (0-1), the second of five Chicago relievers, gave up two runs in the seventh and took the loss.

Twins center fielder Byron Buxton left the game in the second inning with right knee soreness after an unsuccessful attempt to steal second base.

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Buxton singled leading off the inning, didn’t slide and was thrown out by Lee. Buxton walked off the field slowly and was replaced in the bottom half by Castro, who moved from third base.

Miranda then entered the game, took over at third and upped his batting average to .375.

“It’s good because you see everyone starting to play,” Miranda said. “Everyone’s having good at-bats, we’re playing great defense. The pitchers are doing their job, so it’s awesome to see.”

An All-Star in 2022, Buxton was limited to 85 games as a designated hitter last season because of a right knee injury. Baldelli had no update on the outfielder after the game.

Before the game, Minnesota selected the contract of right-handed reliever Caleb Boushley from Triple-A St. Paul. Left-hander Kody Funderburk was optioned to the farm club.

The White Sox recalled lefty Jared Shuster from Triple-A Charlotte and optioned RHP Prelander Berroa.

Up next

White Sox: RHP Brad Keller (0-0, 0.00) faces Cardinals RHP Sonny Gray (3-1, 1.16) at St. Louis on Friday.

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