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Twins 1, White Sox 0 - Beard down

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#facepalm
#facepalm
Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

After last night's game, Adam Eaton shaved off his beard saying "That guy sucked."  Tonight, the new guy was out with flu-like symptoms.  J.B. Shuck got the start in center field and Micah Johnson got to lead off instead.

Jose Quintana put together a strong start that was wasted by the White Sox listless offense.  Quintana gave up one run on six hits and two walks while striking out five.

The first at bats for the White Sox seemed like more of the same.  Kyle Gibson finished off the Sox with 10 pitches even though he came into the game walking twice as many batters as he's struck out.  Although lefties have hit .400 off Gibson, Micah Johnson struck out with a foul tip.  The inning ended quickly after that when Alexei Ramirez fouled out to Joe Maurer on the first pitch, and Melky Cabrera softly lined out after being ahead 2-0.

Jose Quintana cruised through the first.  With one out, Torii Hunter got a weak grounder past Alexei up the middle, but ended the inning with a Joe Maurer double play.

The Sox put some pressure on Gibson in the second, but failed to make anything out of it.  After a Jose Abreu groundout, Adam LaRoche got a single off a shift that only Brian Dozier seemed to have moved into.  Avisail Garcia then crushed a long double to center.  After some poor swings in his at bat, Conor Gillaspie was hit on the foot to load the bases.  Unfortunately, Tyler Flowers grounded into a double play to end the inning.

After that, besides Alexei reaching on an error in the two outs in the third, the teams traded three-up-three-down's.  In the bottom of the fourth, Quintana got into trouble.  With one out, he gave up another single to Torii Hunter, and walked Joe Mauer and Trevor Plouffe to load the bases.  He worked out of the jam by striking out Kurt Suzuki and getting a Eduardo Escobar to ground out to Alexei.  Escobar was originally ruled safe, but, after a successful appeal, Quintana escaped without giving up a run.

In the fifth, the Twins finally got a run on the board.  Kennys Vargas and Shane Robinson singled to start off the inning.  In a case where you would expect a bunt, Danny Santana was hitting and Quintana struck him out.  Brian Dozier then flied out to center.  Unfortunately, rather than hitting the cutoff man, J.B. Shuck airmailed a throw to third that allowed Robinson to move into second.  Then, with Torii Hunter up and two strikes, a curveball in the dirt got past Flowers and Vargas scored on the wild pitch.  Hunter then struck out on the next pitch.

The Sox got something going in the seventh but failed to score again.  After a LaRoche groundout, Garcia walked and Gillaspie got a single up the middle. Flowers hit almost hit into another double play.  Instead only Gillaspie was forced out and Garcia was now at third.  With the Twins bullpen in hurry up mode, J.B. Shuck had a chance to knock in the Sox first run of the night.  Instead, he hit a weak liner to Trevor Plouffe to end the inning.

In the eighth, Zach Putnam came in and after a hit and a walk, Zach Duke came in and got a double play and strike out to end the threat.

As you notice, I haven't been talking much about the White Sox offense in a while.  There wasn't any. With their last chance in the ninth, Jose Abreu popped out to start the inning.  Adam LaRoche then singled past Maurer.  Garcia reached on a fielder's choice that took out pitch runner Emilio Bonifacio.  With the game on the line, pitch hitter Gordon Beckham hit a single to left and got into second when Escobar misplayed the ball.  Finally, with two men in scoring position, Flowers struck out looking to end the inning and the game.

*****

* Quintana ended his night in the seventh but not before a great throw by Avisail Garcia who throw out Kennys Vargas trying to turn a single into a double.  Instead of his normal spin and throw, he fielded the ball cleanly, got the ball into Ramirez at second on one hop and cut down Vargas by ten feet.

* The White Sox have been shutout twice so far this season.  They've scored 1 or fewer runs six times.

* Avisail Garcia raised his team leading batting average to .310.  He went 1-for-3 with a walk.

* Gordon Beckham is now 2-for-3 as a pinch hitter.

* Next up is Hector Noesi against Ricky Nolasco and his 18.00 ERA.