EditorsNote: Corrects Nova’s home ERA, number of home starts entering Saturday; removes unneeded “for” in penultimate graph
Nelson Cruz and Max Kepler both homered twice to back six strong innings from Michael Pineda and lift the visiting Minnesota Twins to a 10-3 victory against the Chicago White Sox on Saturday afternoon.
Kepler smacked solo home runs in the fifth and seventh innings for Minnesota, which got its attack going with Cruz’s two-run shot in the first. Miguel Sano added a two-run homer in the eighth before Cruz punctuated the afternoon with a two-run blast in the ninth.
Cruz finished 4-for-5 with five RBIs while Jorge Polanco, Jason Castro and Kepler had two hits apiece.
Pineda limited the White Sox to one run and four hits while walking one and striking out eight to help the Twins even the three-game series. The series finale is Sunday afternoon.
Pineda (5-4) retired eight straight Chicago hitters in the early going, including five by strikeout, before hitting Jose Abreu with a pitch with two out in the third. He recovered to strike out James McCann en route to setting down 10 of the next 12 White Sox.
Ivan Nova took the loss, allowing four runs and seven hits in six innings with one walk and four strikeouts. Acquired from the Pittsburgh Pirates in a December trade, Nova (3-7) remains in search of his first victory at Guaranteed Rate Field this season. He entered Saturday 0-3 with an 8.79 ERA in six home starts in 2019 before the Twins’ early rallies set his latest appearance on a rough course.
Chicago loaded the bases with none out in the bottom half of the first but only managed one run on a Jon Jay sacrifice fly.
Leury Garcia had two hits for Chicago, including an RBI single in the seventh. Eloy Jimenez capped the scoring with a solo homer in the ninth.
The Twins have won four of five meetings with the White Sox this season, with each victory coming by seven runs.
—Field Level Media