CHICAGO (AP) — Alejandro De Aza drove in a career-high four runs to lead the Chicago White Sox to an 8-6 win over the Minnesota Twins on Tuesday night.
De Aza hit a three-run homer in the fourth inning to erase an early deficit and help the White Sox win their fifth straight game. He also walked and scored two runs.
Paul Konerko doubled, scored twice and had an RBI during Chicago’s decisive five-run rally in the fifth.
Will Ohman (1-3) got the win and Sergio Santos capped a strong performance by the Chicago bullpen with his 28th save. Starter Zach Stewart allowed six runs and seven hits in 4 2-3 innings.
Twins starter Anthony Swarzak (3-5) allowed eight runs — six earned — over 4 1-3 innings.
Jason Kubel hit a three-run homer for Minnesota.
The White Sox remained five games behind first-place Detroit in the AL Central. The Tigers beat Kansas City 2-1 in 10 innings earlier Tuesday. Minnesota fell to 23 games below .500 for the first time since the end of the 2000 season.
The game was scoreless through three innings before the game came to life in the fourth with three straight three-run frames and Chicago’s wild five-run fifth — which erased a 6-3 deficit.
The White Sox sent 10 batters to the plate in the inning and were helped by an error and two hit batsmen. Michael Cuddyer threw the ball away on what might have been an inning-ending double play, opening the floodgates for Chicago.
Konerko had an RBI double. Two runs scored on Cuddyer’s miscue to tie the game at 6-all. The go-ahead run scored when reliever Alex Burnett hit Gordon Beckham on the helmet with the bases loaded.
Stewart beat Minnesota on Aug. 6 for his only big-league win but was hit hard for the second straight outing after allowing seven runs to the Los Angeles Angels in his last start. He was sharp early, then Kubel launched a drive into the back of the Twins’ bullpen in right field, putting Minnesota ahead 3-0 in the fourth.
The turnaround was almost as abrupt for Swarzak in the bottom of the fourth. He hit Konerko in the shoulder with a pitch, then allowed an infield single to Alex Rios. One batter later, De Aza tied the game with a drive into the Twins’ bullpen.
Stewart couldn’t take advantage of the second chance, giving up three runs and exiting in the fifth. Mauer laced a two-run double and scored on Cuddyer’s single.
Chicago’s bullpen posted 4 1-3 scoreless innings. Ohman got the last out of the fifth, Jason Frasor threw a scoreless sixth and Chris Sale struck out four over two scoreless frames.
NOTES: Manager Ozzie Guillen said before the game that he’d like to return to the White Sox in 2012 but would only do so if his contract is extended. … Rehabbing White Sox C A.J. Pierzynski (fractured left wrist) and RHP Phil Humber (facial contusion) appeared for Triple-A Charlotte on Tuesday. Pierzynski went hitless in three at-bats and is expected to rejoin the White Sox on Thursday. Humber, who allowed seven hits and four runs over five innings, is slated to pitch Monday at Minnesota. … Twins 1B Justin Morneau is expected to miss several games due to mild concussion symptoms. Morneau missed the second half of last season because of a concussion. … Minnesota’s Scott Diamond will square off against Chicago’s Jake Peavy in Wednesday afternoon’s series finale. Diamond is seeking his first major-league win.
(TM and © Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)