AL Central foes White Sox, Twins open four-game series

Without Jose Abreu, the Chicago White Sox got back to their winning ways Sunday.

Still, they'd prefer to have the reigning American League MVP in their lineup when they open a four-game home series with the Minnesota Twins on Monday.

Abreu was hit by a pitch in the sixth inning of the opener of what turned out to be a doubleheader Sunday -- it was the resumption of a game suspended Saturday due to rain. X-rays were negative and the team announced the first baseman had a bruised left knee.

"Our guys were concerned about him," White Sox manager Tony La Russa said. "He got hit in a really tender spot. I think you've got to wait and see (Monday), see how it is 24 hours later."

The White Sox won the nightcap 7-5 after losing the completion of Saturday's game 3-2. It was just the second victory for the American League Central leaders in their past nine games.

Zack Collins had two doubles and drove in four runs for the White Sox and Yermin Mercedes had two hits and three RBIs.

"I'm just feeling more comfortable up there," said Collins, who has hit .323 in June. "Every at-bat is starting to feel like a normal at-bat, nothing crazy like there's 35,000 people in the stands, I better get a hit type of thing. You feel that for the first year. Now I feel comfortable and I'm swinging well."

Right-hander Ryan Burr got his second career start in the nightcap and went two innings as the White Sox didn't allow a hit until the sixth in a bullpen game.

"We have a really good group of guys that kind of follows the next-man-up mentality and a lot of guys who are bench guys who are champing at the bit to get out there and help the team any way they can," Burr said. "It sucks to have (Abreu) go down like that, but our guys prepare every day to be ready for something like this happening."

Right-hander Lucas Giolito (5-5, 3.80 ERA) is scheduled to start for the White Sox on Monday against Minnesota right-hander Kenta Maeda (3-2, 4.85).

Giolito is 5-7 with a 4.14 ERA in 14 career starts against the Twins. He beat them 2-1 on May 19 at Target Field, going eight innings and allowing one run on two hits with 11 strikeouts.

Maeda is 2-0 with a 3.60 ERA in four career starts against Chicago. He faced the White Sox on May 11 in Minnesota, getting a no-decision in a 9-3 loss. He pitched five innings and allowed three runs on four hits with three strikeouts.

The Twins, who are tied with Kansas City for fourth place in the five-team division, defeated Cleveland 8-2 Sunday as Josh Donaldson, Nelson Cruz and Andrelton Simmons homered.

It came after Donaldson called a closed-door team meeting before the game.

"We're getting to that point of the season where you hear, 'the dog days of summer,'" Donaldson said. "And especially when you're losing games and not playing up to par, that can beat some guys up. But I want to look at it the other way, and say, 'Hey, we have so much room for improvement right now, that we can go out there and by playing with energy, by focusing and communicating ... and being aware of our own self and everybody else. That's going to lead to us playing better.'"

--Field Level Media