Grandal hits 2 of White Sox 6 HRs to rip Twins 13-3
CHICAGO — Yasmani Grandal hit a three-run shot and a towering two-run drive, and the Chicago White Sox went deep six times to pound the Minnesota Twins 13-3 Wednesday night.
Rookie Andrew Vaughn smacked a two-run homer and had three RBIs. Gavin Sheets hit his first career home run in his second game as Chicago won its third straight.
José Abreu and Brian Goodwin added solo shots to help first-place Chicago expand its lead over Cleveland in the AL Central despite missing injured sluggers Eloy Jiménez and Luis Robert for most of the season.
“Everybody is the lineup is just competing and good things happened, including home runs,” manager Tony La Russa said. “We’re getting whacks up and down the lineup and lot of fireworks because some guys took some great swings.”
Grandal’s 14th career multihomer game gave him 14 homers for the season. The White Sox catcher is batting just .186, but his timely power along with 59 walks have helped.
“Obviously we know what we can do on the offensive side, with the guys who are out now,” Grandal said. “It also shows what we can do with the guys we have here.”
Dylan Cease (7-3) cruised to his fourth victory in five starts, allowing three hits and striking out seven in six innings. Josh Donaldson and Nelson Cruz connected for solo homers off the 25-year-old right-hander, but Cease mixed a repertoire that ranges from 97-plus mph fastballs to 77 mph changeups.
It helped that he was staked to a big lead.
“Long outs, long fly balls and lot of home runs,” Cease said of Chicago’s offense. “That was a beat-down pretty much. To do that, it gives me more confidence to attack and pretty much carry the game into the late innings.”
Gilberto Celestino added a solo shot in the eighth.
Abreu’s homer was just the second for the slumping 2020 AL MVP in 26 games. Sheets, who made his major league debut Tuesday, also had a single and is 4 for 8 with four RBIs so far.
Twins rookie Bailey Ober (0-1) lasted just 3 1/3 innings in his sixth career start, allowing five runs on four hits, including three homers.
“It was tough night in a lot of different ways,” said Twins manager Rocco Baldelli, whose team dropped to 1-7 against the White Sox this season. “We didn’t probably pitch well enough, that’s what it came down to.
“We’re going to have to hold these guys down to beat them. We’re going to have to execute on the mound to beat a good team like this.”
Donaldson homered in the first inning for a second straight day, then struck out twice before exiting. He was booed loudly during his first two plate appearances after touching off a war of words with White Sox ace Lucas Giolito on Tuesday.
Donaldson appeared to yell “not sticky anymore” after a two-run drive off Giolito on Tuesday in Chicago’s 7-6 win and suggested that Giolito had benefitted from the use of foreign substances prior to Major League Baseball’s crackdown last week.
On Wednesday, Donaldson smacked a 1-1 pitch deep to left for a solo shot and early 1-0 Twins lead. The crowd of 16,803 chanted profanely at Donaldson as he trotted quickly around the bases — then directly and silently to the dugout.
Giolito and Donaldson met after Tuesday’s game. Donaldson claimed on Wednesday that Giolito was among “like 150 guys” on a list of pitchers he suspected had been using illicit grip enhancers to generate more spin on their pitches.
Goodwin and Vaughn homered in the second to give Chicago a 3-1 lead. Abreu went deep in the third, and Vaughn’s sac fly in the fourth made it 5-1.
Grandal’s first homer got the White Sox rolling during a six-run fifth that put the game away. Twins center fielder Nick Gordon leaped at the wall and had the ball in his glove, but it rolled out and over the fence.
Tim Anderson singled in a run, and Sheets went deep to right-center to make it 11-1.
After Cruz homered in the sixth, Grandal blasted his second homer in the bottom half.
White Sox: Reinstated RHP Michael Kopech from the 10-day IL (left hamstring). … Placed LHP Aaron Bummer (strained right hamstring) on the 10-day
IL retroactive to June 28 and RHP Evan Marshall on the 10-day IL (strained right flexor pronator). To fill the bullpen spot, the White Sox recalled LHP Jace Fry from Triple-A Charlotte.
Minnesota RHP José Berríos (7-2, 3.41) takes the mound against Chicago LHP Carlos Rodón (6-3, 2.06) in the series finale Thursday afternoon.
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