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White Sox 3, Twins 1: Best start in 34 years

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Mat Latos pitches six strong innings as Sox seal sweep over winless Minnesota

Brad Rempel-USA TODAY Sports

Bullet point recap from a member of the half-watched-at-work crowd:

*The Twins are now 0-9, and Mat Latos was the one to bury them further. His stuff took a step forward – his Brooks Baseball pitch data still needs to be revised, but at least it’s not confusing so many of his sinkers for changeups anymore.

  • 26 cutters
  • 23 fastballs
  • 15 splitters
  • 13 sliders
  • 11 curveballs
  • 5 two-seamers
  • 1 changeup


*Latos did allow his first run as a White Sox pitcher, but mostly because Melky Cabrera’s diving attempt on a Joe Mauer liner turned into a triple to lead off the fourth. Mauer scored on a groundout to cut the White Sox’ lead to 2-1.

*While a defensive miscue led to his first run, some heads-up work by Todd Frazier might’ve saved Latos’ tab. Eddie Rosario led off the sixth with a single and stole second. Mauer followed by hitting a squibber toward third base. Frazier had no play on Mauer, but he was able to dupe Rosario with a pump-fake, catching him far enough off the bag to start a 5-4-5 rundown. Instead of runners on first and second with nobody out, Latos only had to contend with a runner on first and one out. A popout and a deep flyout by Miguel Sano ended the inning.

*Latos got just enough support from a functional offense that scored single runs off Ervin Santana in a few different ways.

In the first? Three straight hits (Adam Eaton doubled, Melky Cabrera singled, and Jose Abreu’s base hit to center).

In the fourth? Avisail Garcia answered the challenge posed by Jerry Sands on Wednesday with an easy homer to center, giving the Sox a 2-0 lead.

In the seventh? Garcia led off with a double, moved to third on a J.B. Shuck sacrifice bunt, then scored on Tyler Saladino’s sac fly to right, despite a tremendous flat-footed throw by Sano.

*The insurance run made Matt Albers’ 25th consecutive scoreless appearance a little easier to take. He gave up a ringing double to Byung Ho park with one out, then walked Max Kepler with two outs to bring Brian Dozier to the plate as the go-ahead run. Dozier meekly tapped back to the mound, though, and Albers’ streak remained intact.

*Zach Duke finally answered the call by retiring both lefties he faced to start the eighth, and Nate Jones and David Robertson retired the last four batters to seal the sweep. Frazier assisted in the 27th out with a diving play to his right.

*This is now the best start through nine games for the White Sox since 1982, which was a very good year.

Record: 7-2 | Box score | Play-by-play | Highlights