Rodon, White Sox stay hot, roll past the Twins
Published 8:09 pm Wednesday, August 22, 2018
CHICAGO — The rebuilding Chicago White Sox caught a glimpse of their future the last two days.
Adam Engel broke a tie with a two-run homer in a five-run fifth, Carlos Rodon continued his torrid stretch with six strong innings and the White Sox beat the Minnesota Twins 7-3 on Wednesday.
Rodon’s performance came one day after prized prospect Michael Kopech pitched two scoreless innings in his big league debut. Together, they project to be the cornerstones of a young rotation on the come.
“Yeah, it’s definitely fun to see some new faces,” said Rodon, who allowed three hits and three walks and struck out five. “Last night was pretty exciting, pretty loud out there — the loudest it has been in awhile.”
“It’s extremely exciting,” said bench coach Joe McEwing, who filled in for Manager Rick Renteria for the third straight game. “When you have pitchers that have plus-plus stuff, and even if they’re having a tough outing, they’re able to fight through it because of their stuff … As they continue to grow, they’ll continue to get to that level.”
Nicky Delmonico and Tim Anderson also homered off Twins starter Kyle Gibson (7-10), helping send him to only his second loss in seven career decisions at Guaranteed Rate Field.
Chicago won for the sixth time in eight games.
“We’ve picked it up offensively and our pitching has been really good,” said Delmonico, who homered in four of the last six games. “We’ve been playing good defense, so it’s all clicking right now.”
The White Sox sent 11 batters to the plate against Gibson and Gabriel Moya in the fifth to snap a 2-2 tie.
Omar Narvaez drew a walk before Engel hit an 0-2 fastball over the left-field fence. Yolmer Sanchez followed with a walk and advanced to second on Avisail Garcia’s one-out single. Sanchez scored when second baseman Logan Forsythe couldn’t handle Daniel Palka’s hard grounder that was ruled an error. Delmonico was walked intentionally, and Matt Davidson hit a two-run single that knocked Gibson out of the game. The right-hander gave up seven runs (four earned) on seven hits and four walks in 4 2/3 innings.
“In that situation, I had (Engel) 0-2, but I was really thinking I had a chance to get a double play there and get out of trouble pretty quickly,” Gibson said. “I just threw one too many sinkers in.”
Rodon (5-3) allowed four of the first five batters to reach base before he settled down. He is 5-1 with a 2.31 ERA over his last 10 starts.
Xavier Cedeno, Juan Minaya and Hector Santiago combined for three innings of one-run relief.
Forsythe led off the game with a walk and, one out later, Jorge Polanco homered into the left-field bleachers, the first off Rodon in 26 innings. He didn’t allow another hit until Forsythe’s infield single with one out in the fifth.
Chicago pulled even on solo homers by Delmonico in the second and Anderson in the fourth. Anderson’s 17th matched his career high of a year ago.
Forsythe’s single off Minaya in the seventh, his third of the game, scored the final run.
SOX TRADE AVILAN
The White Sox acquired RHP Felix Paulino from Philadelphia for LHP Luis Avilan, whose 58 relief appearances led the staff. Avilan had a 2-1 record and 3.86 ERA. Paulino went 4-4 with a 3.91 ERA in 31 games between Single-A Clearwater and Double-A Reading. RHP Ryan Burr and INF Jose Rondon were brought up from Triple-A Charlotte.
STILL THE ONE
INF Joe Mauer was given the day off and remained one hit behind Rod Carew (2,085) and second place on the all-time franchise list. Only Kirby Puckett (2,304) has more.
Twins: Manager Paul Molitor wouldn’t rule out a rotation spot for RHP Michael Pineda (Tommy John surgery) if he had no setbacks in his final two rehab starts with Triple-A Rochester.
White Sox: McEwing was in contact via text with Renteria, who underwent more tests for the lightheadedness that he experienced on Monday in Minnesota. “He said he feels great, and hopefully, he’ll join us soon,” McEwing said. “That’s great news.” … INF Jose Abreu (lower abdominal surgery) was placed on the 10-day DL. The team leader in home runs (22) and RBI (78) could resume baseball-related drills in two weeks
Twins: RHP Kohl Stewart (0-1, 7.71) will make his third big league start Thursday night in the opener of a four-game series against Oakland in Minnesota.
White Sox: In what could be the final game of his White Sox career, RHP James Shields (5-14, 4.39) will start a four-game set at Detroit on Thursday afternoon. His name has been mentioned prominently in regard to the Aug. 31 waivers trade deadline.