Suzuki’s three hits help Twins finish sweep of White Sox
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) – Kurt Suzuki had three hits, including a double, for the Minnesota Twins on Sunday in a 6-5 victory over the Chicago White Sox.
Suzuki, a Baldwin High School graduate, raised his batting average this year to .321, best among all American League catchers. He extended his hitting streak to nine games, and is batting .424 (14-for-33) in that span.
In All-Star fan balloting announced Sunday, Suzuki was fourth among AL catchers with 812,865 votes. Matt Wieters of the Orioles, who underwent season-ending elbow surgery last week, leads the voting with 1,852,770. He is followed by the Oakland Athletics’ Derek Norris (1,486,850), and the New York Yankees’ Brian McCann (1,344,076).
The Twins’ victory completed their first four-game sweep of the White Sox since 1994.
“Anytime you sweep anybody is a real good feeling, but anytime you get a four-game it makes it that much more gratifying for our ballclub,” said Minnesota bench coach Terry Steinbach, who took over when manager Ron Gardenhire was ejected in the third inning after arguing with home plate umpire D.J. Reyburn.
Phil Hughes (8-3) earned the win despite going just five innings and tying a season high by giving up five earned runs. Anthony Swarzak and Casey Fien combined for three shutout innings of relief and Jared Burton earned his first save since May 30, 2013, with a perfect ninth.
“I just struggled with command, my off-speed stuff wasn’t great,” Hughes said. “Our bullpen stepped up big today, offense fought back a couple times. That’s huge.”
John Danks (6-6) allowed six earned runs on a season high-tying 10 hits in five innings, and walked four batters. In his last eight starts versus the Twins, he is 0-6 with a 6.18 ERA.
“Certainly wasn’t fun. Shot myself in the foot. Didn’t do myself any favors. Cost us the game,” Danks said. “You score five runs, that should be plenty to win a ballgame. To go out and give it right back in a five-inning span is kind of a tough pill to swallow.”
Gordon Beckham and Jose Abreu had two RBIs apiece for Chicago.