April 8, 2007

Game 5: Chicago White Sox

The Twins were able to leave Chicago with a split-series after winning today by a score of 3-1. The offense didn't light it up, but it was definitely better than yesterday and they did enough to get the win. The big story was Johan Santana, who pitched a gem and allowed just one hit, which came in the second inning.

Johan Santana really showed up today, and although he started slow, he pitched an awesome game. Early on, his control was a little shaky as he waked three batters in the first two innings. However, after those innings, he didn't walk a single batter and didn't give up a hit. His final line was seven innings, one hit, three walks and nine strikeouts.

The bullpen hasn't had to pitch very much so far this season, and that was the case today as they pitched just two innings. With Rincon out for a few days with a sore neck, Crain pitched the eighth inning and allowed one run. His line was one inning, one hit and one run. Nathan pitched the ninth inning, and really had to earn the save facing Konerko, Thome, Dye, Crede and Pierzynski. He got through the inning after allowing a lead-off hit to Konerko and earned his third save of the season. In his inning, he also picked up one strikeout.

The offense was better than yesterday when they managed to get just three hits. They only picked up six hits in the win, but they got a clutch hit from Morneau in the fourth inning. With two on and nobody out, Morneau hit the first pitch from Danks over the rightfield wall for his second homerun of the season. That put the Twins up 3-0, and with Santana's performance, that was all they would need. Morneau and Mauer each collected two hits on the day while Cuddyer and Tyner each picked up hits as well.

For more stats from the Twins, or the White Sox stats, check out the Box Score.

Twins Notes:
- Cirillo returned to the batters box yesterday when he pinch hit in the eighth inning. He had been out since the first game when he felt soreness in his knee.

- White missed his second game in a row on Sunday. White was scratched from the lineup right before the game on Saturday after feeling a slight strain in his calf. There is no word on whether he will play tomorrow, but he is listed as day-to-day.

- Along with Torii Hunter, Jerry White and Rondell White will wear number 42 next Sunday when the MLB honors the 60th anniversary of Jackie Robinson's Major League debut.

- Juan Rincon wasn't available for Sunday's game after experiencing a stiff neck. He should be ready to go if needed against the Yankees.

- Finally Mike Venafro had a rough outing down in AAA. He pitched two innings and allowed five runs and six hits.

Next Game:
The Twins will be back on the field for a Monday game tomorrow against the New York Yankees. The Twins will send out Sidney Ponson to make his first start of the season, and he will face off against Carl Pavano. The game will be on both FSN and ESPN and the first pitch is set for 6:05.