Minnesota at Chicago

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Mauer's three-run home run leads Twins over White Sox

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports

CHICAGO -- The middle of the lineup supplied the power. The bottom part came through with six hits, and the starting pitcher was effective, too.

Not that this was unusual for the Minnesota Twins.

"That's what we've been able to do this whole year," Michael Cuddyer said after a 7-4 victory over the Chicago White Sox on Monday night.

Joe Mauer hit a three-run homer, and Cuddyer and Justin Morneau also connected to lead the surging Twins past slumping Chicago.

Brad Radke pitched six solid innings for Minnesota, which pulled within two games of the second-place White Sox in the AL Central with its 32nd win in 40 games. Jason Tyner and Jason Bartlett, the bottom two batters in the Twins' lineup, had three hits apiece.

Tyner also made two nice catches in center field.

He sprinted back, leaped and banged into the wall to rob Joe Crede of an extra-base hit in the second. And he raced to snag Jim Thome's drive to deep right-center with a runner on third to end the fifth.

Paul Konerko homered in the fourth and Juan Uribe connected in the fifth to give the White Sox a 2-0 lead. But Chicago lost for the 10th time in 13 games and fell 7½ games behind first-place Detroit.

Brian Anderson hit a two-run shot in the ninth for the White Sox, who are only 1½ games ahead of the New York Yankees in the wild-card race.

"Everybody is catching up and gaining ground on you, but there's still two full months to go," Konerko said.

Cuddyer and Morneau hit consecutive homers off Javier Vazquez (9-6) in the sixth to give the Twins a 3-2 lead. Mauer went deep against Neal Cotts in the seventh -- the first homer of his career off a left-hander.

Radke (9-7) allowed two runs and seven hits. He is 5-0 in nine starts since losing to Oakland on June 3.

"It just happens," Radke said. "We just ran into a stretch where we're playing well. We're playing well at home. It's nice to get a few wins on the road."

Vazquez took a shutout into the sixth, but things again fell apart quickly for him.

Nick Punto led off with a single to extend his career-high hitting streak to 16 games. With one out, Cuddyer hit a two-run shot for his 13th homer. Morneau put the Twins ahead with his 26th - a shot that just cleared the wall in right.

It was the third time the Twins hit back-to-back homers this season, and Cuddyer's shot was Minnesota's first since Rondell White went deep against Tampa Bay on July 18 - a span of 202 plate appearances.

The sellout crowd booed Vazquez on his way to the dugout and let him hear it again in the seventh, after Bartlett's double put runners on second and third with none out.

Neal Cotts relieved and, with one out, Punto sent a grounder to shortstop. Juan Uribe fired home to cut down Tyner, who protested the call by yelling and waving his arms. Twins manager Ron Gardenhire came out of the dugout and argued vehemently with plate umpire Laz Diaz.

But instead of letting that play slow them down, the Twins quickly took control.

The next batter, Mauer, padded the lead with his eighth homer. He added a sacrifice fly in the ninth to make it 7-2.

"I just love arguing," a smiling Gardenhire said. "The big thing there is it didn't go our way at home plate. I tried to keep my argument to a minimum, told him, 'I think you missed it,' and (wanted to) get back in because I thought we had momentum going."

The Twins have had momentum for 40 games, actually. And the White Sox can't find it.

They beat Texas on Sunday to snap a four-game losing streak and grabbed a 2-0 lead in this one. But the game soon took a turn.

After going 1-for-14 in his previous four games, Konerko drove a 1-1 pitch over the center-field wall for his 25th homer. Uribe led off the fifth with his 13th homer.

Vazquez kept Minnesota off balance early with his cutter and changeup before falling apart. It's a perplexing trend.

"What's frustrating is that I feel good, and I feel like I'm making some good pitches and nothing is happening," he said.


  • Punto's 16-game hitting streak tied Morneau for the Twins' season high.
  • The White Sox acquired right-handed reliever Mike MacDougal from Kansas City for minor league pitchers Tyler Lumsden and Daniel Cortes. An All-Star closer in 2003, MacDougal strained his right shoulder during spring training and was activated from the disabled list July 13. He is expected to be a setup man for closer Bobby Jenks. Chicago optioned pitcher Sean Tracey to Triple-A Charlotte to clear roster room for MacDougal.
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Joe Mauer watches his three-run home run leave the yard in the seventh inning.   (AP)
Joe Mauer watches his three-run home run leave the yard in the seventh inning. (AP)

Players of the Game

J. Mauer
AB 4
R 1
H 1
HR 1

J. Uribe
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 1

Related Video

Minnesota Twins
Luis Castillo, 2B4000105 .278
Nick Punto, 3B4210102 .319
Joe Mauer, C4114021 .380
Michael Cuddyer, RF5122010 .273
Justin Morneau, 1B5121003 .309
Jason Kubel, DH4000001 .282
Rondell White, LF4000010 .215
Jason Tyner, CF4130000 .372
Jason Bartlett, SS4130001 .316
2B - Justin Morneau (20, Vazquez), Jason Tyner (1, Vazquez), Jason Bartlett 2 (8, Vazquez, Riske)
HR - Joe Mauer (8, Cotts), Michael Cuddyer (13, Vazquez), Justin Morneau (26, Vazquez)
SF - Joe Mauer (4)
RBI - Joe Mauer 4 (54), Michael Cuddyer 2 (61), Justin Morneau (81)
2-OUT RBI - Joe Mauer 3 (26)
SB - Luis Castillo (11, 2nd base off Vazquez/Pierzynski), Nick Punto (10, 2nd base off Cotts/Pierzynski)
Team LOB - 7
Minnesota Twins
Brad Radke (W,9-7) 6722012 4.74
Jesse Crain 1.2100020 4.31
Dennys Reyes 0.1000000 1.37
Kyle Lohse 1222001 7.12
WP - Brad Radke (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Brad Radke 89-58, Jesse Crain 27-18, Dennys Reyes 2-2, Kyle Lohse 15-11
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Brad Radke 6-11, Jesse Crain 3-0, Dennys Reyes 1-0, Kyle Lohse 3-0
Batters Faced - Brad Radke 25, Jesse Crain 6, Dennys Reyes 1, Kyle Lohse 5
Chicago White Sox
Scott Podsednik, LF4010010 .272
Tadahito Iguchi, 2B4020002 .290
Jim Thome, DH4000003 .289
Paul Konerko, 1B4111022 .301
A.J. Pierzynski, C4020001 .303
Joe Crede, 3B4000002 .293
Ross Gload, RF4000002 .284
Juan Uribe, SS4221000 .244
Brian Anderson, CF4122000 .211
2B - Scott Podsednik (22, Radke), Brian Anderson (11, Radke)
HR - Paul Konerko (25, Radke), Juan Uribe (13, Radke), Brian Anderson (6, Lohse)
SH - Scott Podsednik (7)
RBI - Paul Konerko (74), Juan Uribe (51), Brian Anderson 2 (23)
2-OUT RBI - Brian Anderson 2 (7)
Team LOB - 6
PB - A.J. Pierzynski (8)
Chicago White Sox
Javier Vazquez (L,9-6) 6855142 5.31
Neal Cotts 1111001 3.10
David Riske 1.1211100 3.75
Brandon McCarthy 0.2100000 4.06
Pitches-Strikes - Javier Vazquez 91-56, Neal Cotts 16-8, David Riske 33-19, Brandon McCarthy 11-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Javier Vazquez 12-2, Neal Cotts 1-2, David Riske 2-2
Batters Faced - Javier Vazquez 27, Neal Cotts 4, David Riske 7, Brandon McCarthy 3
Game Information
Attendance - 39750
Game Time - 2:54
Temperature - 83
Umpires - Home - Laz Diaz, First Base - Rick Reed, Second Base - Tim Tschida, Third Base - Ted Barrett