Rookie Ober, Twins blank White Sox 1-0; Polanco homers
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Rookie Bailey Ober shut out the White Sox into the sixth inning, Jorge Polanco homered and the last-place Minnesota Twins took another series from a playoff contender, beating Chicago 1-0 on Wednesday.
Minnesota won two of three against AL Central-leading Chicago after taking three of four at Houston, which leads the AL West.
Caleb Thielbar (4-0), Juan Minaya and Alex Colomé worked 3 2/3 hitless innings in relief of Ober, with Colomé getting the last three outs for his seventh save in 11 chances.
“It has been amazing,” Polanco said of the wins against the White Sox and Astros. “This team is capable of doing a lot of good things. We have really good young talent and we just go out there and try to win every day.”
José Ruiz (1-2) allowed Polanco’s homer in the sixth, his lone inning of relief. Reynaldo López threw three scoreless innings as an opener after the White Sox placed left-hander Carlos Rodón on the 10-day injured list before the game and altered their rotation.
“I think overall he pitched well,” Chicago manager Tony La Russa said of López. “Had to rise to the occasion a couple of times and made pitches. It was just a well-pitched game, both sides, all day.”
López, a starter through his first five major league seasons, could be the main fill-in while Rodón is on the injured list. Eight of his 10 appearances for Chicago this season have been out of the bullpen.
“You feel a little sad because of the situation with Carlos,” López said. “At the same time, you appreciate the opportunity the team is giving you. I tried to do my best.”
Chicago started the day with a 10 1/2-game lead in the Central built largely from their results against Minnesota and the rest of the division. The White Sox went 13-6 against the Twins this season and are 37-25 in divisional play.
After losing the series opener 11-1, the Twins bounced back with a pair of strong starts from rookies.
Griffin Jax struck out 10 batters on Tuesday. Starting against Chicago for the fifth time in 13 starts this season, Ober allowed six hits and one walk with six strikeouts.
“You go back and you watch your past outings and see what has worked, what is successful, and what hasn’t and you try to base your game plan off that,” Ober said. “Today, I felt like I executed what I wanted to do the majority of the time and good things happened.”
Polanco’s homer was his 21st of the season, one off a career high set in 2019. He added a triple off the right-field wall in the eighth and now is hitting .345 with seven homers over his last 14 games.
FIELD OF DREAMS CHANGES
Rodón was scheduled to start Thursday’s “Field of Dreams” game in Iowa against the New York Yankees. Instead, Lance Lynn will be pushed back to start.
La Russa announced that he will miss Thursday’s game to attend the funeral of a relative. Miguel Cairo will manage the team.
White Sox: C Yasmani Grandal was sent to Double-A Birmingham to begin a rehab assignment. Grandal, who’s hit .188 with 14 homers and 38 RBIs in 63 games this season, has been out since July 6 with a torn tendon in his left knee. ... RHP Matt Foster was recalled from Triple-A Charlotte to take Rodón’s spot on the roster. ... SS Tim Anderson, 3B Yoán Moncada and CF Luis Robert all got a day of rest. Robert had played two games after returning from the 60-day injured list.
Twins: 3B Josh Donaldson (hamstring) was out of the lineup on Wednesday, but Baldelli said he was feeling good after being the DH in Tuesday’s game. Donaldson was available off the bench and is set to play in the field on Friday. ... Baldelli said he’s gotten good reports on rehabbing RHPs Randy Dobnak (right middle finger strain) and Luke Farrell (right oblique strain) after they threw bullpen sessions. They are scheduled to throw again on Friday.
White Sox: Lynn (10-3, 2.04 ERA) will make Thursday’s start at the field built for the 1989 Kevin Costner film. He’s allowed one run or less in six of his last seven outings. New York is scheduled to start left-hander Andrew Heaney (7-8, 5.45).
Twins: Michael Pineda (4-7, 3.83) starts the opener of a three-game home series against the Tampa Bay Rays on Friday. Pineda has lost his last two starts, giving up four earned runs over 10 innings.
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