July 15: Chicago 4, Minnesota 3
For most starting pitchers in the Rhubarb, seven innings with three runs allowed is a decent day’s work, but for Johan Santana, it is just about as bad as it has gotten all year. Four consecutive White Sox batters reached in the second inning to plate the three runs against Santana: Luke Appling singled, Sherm Lollar walked, Robin Ventura doubled, and Eddie Collins singled. The Sox added another run in the eighth against Firpo Marberry.
The Twins nearly came back to tie it up while Ed Walsh tried to complete the game in the ninth. Singles by Joe Cronin and Cecil Travis knocked out Walsh in favor of Terry Forster. A Stan Spence sac fly got Minnesota within a run. That potential tying run stood at first base with two outs and Rod Carew, the man with the second most hits in the league, stood in the box, but Forster rolled Carew over on a groundout to second to finish the game.
R H BB MN 010 000 011 - 3 12 1 CHI 030 000 01x - 4 7 4 HR: none starters IP R ER HR BB SO J. Santana 7.0 3 3 0 3 5 E. Walsh 8.1 3 3 0 1 1 MN 48-40, CHI 46-42
July 16: Chicago 7, Minnesota 1
Minnesota’s other ace, Walter Johnson, was next on the docket, and Chicago handed him his first or second worst start of the season. Johnson lasted just 5.1 innings, which was the first time he failed to pitch at least seven innings all year. Most surprisingly was Johnson’s lack of command as he walked six Chicagoans. Only three of the seven runs recorded against Johnson were earned after Minnesota couldn’t recover from a Cecil Travis error in the second inning.
On the bump for Chitown was southpaw Thornton Lee, making just his fourth start since replacing Red Faber in the rotation. Lee tossed his first complete game while giving up just one. He has a 2.64 ERA in his four starts. “That dog’ll hunt,” said Sox skipper Jimmy Dykes.
Luke Appling had a perfect day at the plate with two walks and two singles.
R H BB MN 000 000 100 - 1 6 4 CHI 240 001 00x - 7 9 8 HR: none starters IP R ER HR BB SO W. Johnson 5.1 7 3 0 6 4 T. Lee 9.0 1 1 0 4 0 MN 48-41, CHI 47-42
July 17: Chicago 6, Minnesota 1
After cutting down Minnesota’s two powerhouse pitchers, the less intimidating Bert Blyleven stood on the hill to try to prevent the sweep. The Sox smacked Blyleven all over the field though, racking up four walks, eight hits, and six runs in the Dutchman’s four innings.
Frank Thomas reached four times in the game, and Minnie Minoso, Joe Jackson, Chet Lemon, and Harold Baines all reached thrice. Baines drove in four.
The Sox are on a 16-2 tear that has pulled them into a tie for fourth with Minnesota.
R H BB MN 000 010 000 - 1 5 1 CHI 201 300 00x - 6 11 7 HR: K. Puckett (3) starters IP R ER HR BB SO B. Blyleven 4.0 6 6 0 4 1 J. Rigney 9.0 1 1 1 1 1 MN 48-42, CHI 48-42