Giolito blanks Twins, White Sox take 2 of 3
MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Lucas Giolito pitched a three-hit shutout of the second-highest scoring team in the major leagues, racking up 12 strikeouts for the Chicago White Sox in a 4-0 victory over Minnesota on Wednesday to take the series from the first-place Twins.
Giolito (14-6) allowed only runner past first base, a double by Jonathan Schoop in the eighth. The 25-year-old fanned Jake Cave to finish that inning and reach double-digit strikeouts for the third straight time, the first White Sox starter to do so since Chris Sale did so in eight consecutive turns in 2015. The last right-hander with a streak that long for the team was Edwin Jackson, with three in a row in 2010.
José Abreu went 3 for 5 with two RBIs for the White Sox from his usual third spot in the lineup, with Leury Garcia and Tim Anderson each producing two hits from their places in front of him. The first three batters scored all four runs against Twins starter Jake Odorizzi (13-6), who was outdone by his fellow American League All-Star.
Giolito matched Cleveland’s Shane Bieber for the major league lead with his third complete game of the season. The White Sox and Indians have a baseball-best five apiece. Giolito got his with 115 pitches, without a walk.
The Twins were blanked for the third time this year, all at home and also on April 30 by Houston and June 17 by Boston. They took a three-game lead on the Indians in the AL Central into the day. This 13-game stretch entirely against the third-place White Sox and fifth-place Detroit Tigers that began this week looked like a favorable spot on the schedule, but losing two out of three at home to the White Sox was another reminder that solid starting pitching can make quite the difference, even if there’s a considerable difference between two teams in the standings.
The Twins fell to 8-5 against the White Sox this season. They have lost seven consecutive weekday games with afternoon start times.
The White Sox are aiming to be next year where the Twins are now, and if they can make a big jump in 2020, Giolito will surely be a major factor. He has deftly rebounded from a rough road from late June to late July with a strong August, producing his fifth straight quality start of six innings or more and three runs or fewer.