Minneapolis, MN – Gavin Floyd threw seven scoreless innings on Tuesday and the Chicago White Sox hung on to edge the Minnesota Twins, 3-2, in the middle test of a three-game set at Target Field.
Floyd (6-7) scattered five hits and struck out nine without issuing a free pass to earn the win. Addison Reed allowed two runs in the ninth, but survived to notch his 10th save of the season.
"I think at first I was a bit off, but as the game got on, I felt like my command got better," Floyd said. "I had a better feel for everything."
Alex Rios clubbed a two-run home run among his two hits and scored twice, while Alexei Ramirez went 2-for-3 with an RBI single for the ChiSox, who bounced back from a 4-1 defeat on Monday.
Jamey Carroll slapped a two-run single in defeat for the Twins, who had their modest two-game winning streak snapped. Joe Mauer and Josh Willingham added hits in the loss.
Liam Hendriks (0-5) allowed three runs on five hits and a walk with five strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings to absorb the loss.
After both teams stranded runners in scoring position through the first three innings, the White Sox broke through in the fourth.
After Adam Dunn flied out to start the inning, Paul Konerko drew a free pass and Rios brought him home when he crushed a slider from Hendriks deep and into the second deck in left field to make it a 2-0 game.
"I just hung it a little bit and it's just one of those pitches that you're not going to get back," admitted Hendriks about the homer to Rios.
Minnesota threatened in the sixth when Mauer and Willingham slapped back-to- back one-out singles, but Floyd fanned Justin Morneau and got Trevor Plouffe to loft an easy fly ball to left, keeping the Twins off the board.
The White Sox plated what turned out the be the winning run in the seventh. Rios started the frame with a base hit, stole second and came around to score on a single through the right side of the infield by Ramirez to make it a 3-0 margin.
Reed fanned Willingham and Plouffe around a Morneau walk for the first two outs of the ninth inning, but then gave up a double to Ryan Doumit. With runners on second and third, Reed plunked pinch-hitter Chris Parmelee to load the bases. Carroll then ripped a single into right to bring home Morneau and pinch-runner Darin Mastroianni. Reed recovered, though, and induced a game- ending groundout from Denard Span.
Despite the loss, the Twins are 26-13 against the White Sox at home since September 23, 2007, including a record of 17-12 at home since the start of 2009..Minnesota fell to 10-10 against the AL Central this season, while the White Sox are 16-12 against intra-divisional competition...Chicago improved to 14-20 in games decided by two runs or less...It was Floyd's third nine- strikeout game of the season...Minnesota went 1-for-10 with runners in scoring position and left eight on base.