CHICAGO (AP) — Scott Diamond pitched into the seventh inning for his first win since June, and the Minnesota Twins avoided a three-game sweep by beating the Chicago White Sox 4-3 on Wednesday.
Diamond (6-11) allowed three runs and five hits in 6 1-3 innings to earn his first big league win since June 20 against the White Sox. Since then, he was 0-5 with a 6.20 ERA in eight starts and spent more than a month at Triple-A Rochester.
Minnesota had only scored four runs during the first two games of the series, but matched that in the first two innings, scoring once in the first and three times in the second against John Danks (4-14).
Oswaldo Arcia, Chris Colabello, Eric Fryer and Brian Dozier drove in runs that helped the Twins win for the second time in eight games.
Diamond improved to 3-0 against Chicago.
Glen Perkins pitched a scoreless ninth for his 36th save in 40 tries, snapping the White Sox’s five-game winning streak against the Twins.
Diamond’s day ended in the seventh when he allowed Jordan Danks’ two-run single to right, cutting the lead to 4-3. But Casey Fien struck out Josh Phegley and Conor Gillaspie, pinch hitting for Leury Garcia, flew out to right to end the inning.
While Diamond was trying for his first win in almost three months, John Danks’ tough first two innings led to his fourth straight loss. In seven innings, he yielded four runs and seven hits, despite retiring the last 16 batters he faced.
Chicago was looking to sweep a series for the first time since Aug. 20-22 against Kansas City and win three straight for the first time since winning six in a row from Aug. 16-22, but it fell behind early.
Minnesota took its first lead of the series in the top of the first on Arcia’s two-out single, driving in Alex Presley. Presley led off the game by singling to left.
The Twins increased their lead in the second, scoring three times on five hits. Colabello’s RBI single scored Ryan Doumit from second for a 2-0 lead, then Fryer, making his first major league start, singled to center to drive in Colabello. After Presley popped out, Dozier’s single to center brought in Eduardo Escobar for the inning’s third run.
Diamond carried a shutout into the fourth until Alejandro De Aza skied a 3-2 pitch into the bullpen in right field, cutting the Minnesota lead to 4-1. The homer was De Aza’s 16th, and his first since Sept. 3 at New York.
De Aza was part of Chicago’s outfield that was missing Avisail Garcia for the fourth straight day after his wife gave birth to the couple’s first child Monday.
John Danks, meanwhile, recovered after Dozier’s RBI single in the second, getting 16 straight Twins until he was relieved by Daniel Webb to start the eighth.
NOTES: White Sox manager Robin Ventura said LHP Hector Santiago would get another start this season. Santiago isn’t among Chicago’s scheduled starters for its series this weekend in Detroit, but he could start as soon as then if somebody else needs to be skipped. . Part of the reason manager Ron Gardenhire chose Wednesday to give Fryer his first major league start was because Fryer and Diamond worked together in the minors. . The White Sox honored INF Micah Johnson before the game for leading the minors with 84 stolen bases. Johnson played at three levels (Low-A, High-A, Double-A) and was a part of the Birmingham team that won the Southern League championship. . On Thursday in Oakland, Minnesota will start Kevin Correia (9-12, 4.31) against the Athletics’ Dan Straily (10-7, 4.11). Chicago is off, and on Friday, Andre Rienzo (2-2, 5.04) is expected to face Detroit’s Max Scherzer (19-3, 2.95).
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