Albers Gets 1st Loss In Twins’ Defeat To White Sox
The breaks went the other way in his third outing.
Minnesota misplayed two fly balls by losing them in the sky and Albers’ scoreless streak to start his career was snapped at 17 1-3 innings as the Chicago White Sox beat the Twins 8-5 Saturday. Dayan Viciedo hit a three-run homer off Albers and Alejandro De Aza added a two-run shot in the ninth after the Twins had climbed back within a run.
“I was able to catch the breaks those first two nights, and tonight didn’t quite catch as many,” Albers said. “Things change, and then you make one bad pitch, and you pay for it. It’s a fine line in this game, and sometimes, that’s how things go.”
Chris Sale (9-11) won his third straight start for the White Sox, giving up three runs and nine hits in seven innings with eight strikeouts and Addison Reed earned his career-high 30th save in 35 chances.
Albers (2-1) was dazzling in his first two starts, making use of a mid-80s fastball, changeup and slow curve to get ahead of hitters. But he struggled to get strike one against the Chicago early Saturday and allowed five runs and eight hits in seven innings.
Chicago snapped Albers’ scoreless streak — a record for a Twins starter to begin a career — with a run in the first after Alexei Ramirez’s fly ball to center field was lost in the sun. De Aza, who opened with a single, went to third on the play and scored on Paul Konerko’s RBI groundout.
Albers had two outs in the fourth before allowing four straight runners to reach base, concluding with Viciedo’s homer to left. But he retired nine of the last 10 batters he faced to reach the seventh inning for the third time in three starts.
“The streak was great while it was going on,” Albers said. “It was awesome to have those two nights. They’re pretty special, and who knows if that will ever happen again. You see today how quickly things can change, and it’s one of those things where you’ve got to get some breaks for it to happen like that.”
Adam Dunn had three hits for the White Sox after left fielder Josh Willingham lost another high pop-up in the eighth, giving Chicago a 6-3 lead.
“Just didn’t see it,” Willingham said.
Ryan Doumit hit a two-run homer in the Twins’ eighth off Nate Jones. Minnesota homered for the 10th straight game, its longest streak since 11 consecutive in August 2007.
Joe Mauer doubled and drove in two runs for the Twins, who lost for the fourth time in five games.
Willingham, Brian Dozier and Pedro Florimon all finished with two hits and scored a run. Florimon had just one hit in his previous 26 at-bats.
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