Polanco hits 3-run HR in both games, Twins split with WSox
CHICAGO (AP) — After giving the Minnesota Twins a chance to come back in the opener, Jorge Polanco immediately drove them in the right direction during the nightcap.
Polanco hit his second three-run homer of the day as the Twins scored six times in the second inning and routed the Chicago White Sox 10-2 to split a doubleheader Monday night.
Brian Dozier added a three-run drive off Carson Fulmer during the rally, and Minnesota bounced back from a 7-6 loss in the first game. Byron Buxton and Jason Castro each added a solo shot for the Twins, who have won five of six. They are a half-game ahead of the Angels for the second AL wild card.
Polanco, who has five homers, hit a three-run shot off Derek Holland in the eighth inning of the opener to cut Minnesota’s deficit to 7-6. In homering for the first time in back-to-back games, Polanco did it in consecutive at-bats — and from both sides of the plate. He went deep right-handed against Holland and then left-handed vs. Fulmer.
“Polanco gave us life in the second game,” Twins manager Paul Molitor said. “He got us going. And they weren’t cheapies. He got a hold of both of them.”
Dillon Gee (1-0) retired the first 12 Chicago batters before rookie Nicky Delmonico homered leading off the fifth. Gee allowed only two hits and walked none through six innings while striking out four.
“It was a long day for these guys,” he said. “When they gave me a six-run lead, I just want to get it as fast as possible.”
“I was just trying to be aggressive after that and just fill up the zone and not walk guys and make it quick,” Gee added.
Adam Engel hit a solo shot in the ninth off Tyler Duffey, who followed Gee with three innings to earn his first save.
Gee was signed by Minnesota as a minor league free agent on June 22. The right-hander had made his previous start for Texas on June 6 against the Mets before being designated for assignment by the Rangers. He made his Twins debut on Aug. 3.
Delmonico has reached base in 18 of 19 major league games and hit six homers in that span.
Fulmer (0-1), who was recalled for the start and made his 2017 White Sox debut, gave up six runs in 1 1/3 innings on four hits and three walks.
“They were on every pitch he was throwing,” Chicago manager Rick Renteria said. “It didn’t matter if it was a fastball or breaking ball, they were on time.”
In the first game, Yolmer Sanchez homered and drove in four runs, Jose Abreu hit his 25th of the season and the White Sox held on.
Carlos Rodon (2-4) pitched effectively into seventh inning for the fifth straight outing to earn his first win since July 3. The left-hander allowed two runs and four hits in 6 1/3 innings while striking out nine. He has 2.25 ERA in his last five starts.
“Another nice outing, going deep into the game,” Renteria said. “We extended his pitch count a little more (to 115), but he was actually looking stronger at the end.”
Juan Minaya worked a perfect ninth for his third save after Holland, who has struggled in 24 starts this season, was charged with three runs in one-third of an inning during his second relief appearance.
“Not the kind of excitement you’re looking for,” Renteria said, “but Minaya did a nice job to finish off for us.”
Avisail Garcia had three hits and two RBIs for AL-worst Chicago. Abreu doubled and extended his hitting streak to 10 games. He became the first White Sox player to hit 25 or more home runs in each of his first four seasons.
Tim Melville (0-1) lasted just 3 1/3 innings and allowed five runs in his Twins debut after being recalled from Triple-A Rochester to start.
In the nightcap, Dylan Covey replaced Fulmer and allowed three runs in 4 2/3 innings.
Chicago optioned Fulmer, along with RHP Brad Goldberg, to Triple-A Charlotte after the doubleheader. . The Twins made LHP Nik Turley their 26th player for the doubleheader. He replaced Melville in the fourth inning of the first game and pitched 3 2/3 innings.
Twins: Placed All-Star 3B Miguel Sano on the 10-day disabled list with a stress reaction in his left shin bone. Sano was pulled from Saturday’s game against Arizona and sat out Sunday. He’s batting .267 with 28 home runs and 77 RBIs. ... 1B Kennys Vargas was recalled from Triple-A Rochester for the fifth time this season to fill Sano’s spot. ... Molitor said LHP Hector Santiago, out since July 2 with upper back pain, is expected to throw a bullpen Wednesday. Adalberto Mejia, sidelined since Aug. 8 with a sore left arm, will follow on Thursday. Both could make rehab appearances by the end of the month.
White Sox: Between games, Renteria said INF Matt Davidson, on the DL retroactive to Aug. 4 with a bruised right wrist, is close to returning. ... INF Yoan Moncada, as expected, sat out the second game as he recovers from shin splints. ... RHP Reynaldo López, on the 10-day DL with a strained back, played catch.
Minnesota RHP Kyle Gibson (6-10, 6.05 ERA) pitches Tuesday against RHP Lucas Giolito, a prized prospect who makes his White Sox debut. In his last five starts at Triple-A Charlotte, Giolito was 3-1 with a 1.71 ERA. The 23-year-old right-hander was acquired with Lopez and Dane Dunning from Washington for Adam Eaton last December.
More AP baseball: https://apnews.com/tag/MLBbaseball