P.J. Walters throws complete-game gem as Twins throttle White Sox
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Walters cruised in his third start of the season to snap Chicago's four-game winning streak. He gave up a solo homer to Gordon Beckham with one out in the first inning, but
Two batters after Beckham's home run, Paul Konerko doubled off Walters, but the 27-year-old right-hander didn't allow another hit until Konerko singled with one out in the seventh.
Walters (2-1) let the leadoff man reach in the third, fourth and fifth innings, but immediately induced double plays each time to erase any potential threat.
He struck out eight and allowed just five hits and two runs.
Morneau's fourth-inning blast capped a five-run frame for the Twins, who have won five of their last six games.
Minnesota's offense came to life early, sending nine men to the plate in a four-run second inning against Gavin Floyd. Alexi Casilla's two-run double put the Twins on the board, and Jamey Carroll and Denard Span followed with run-scoring singles.
They continued to pour it on in the fourth. Floyd intentionally walked Joe Mauer with two outs to load the bases for Josh Willingham, who laced a 3-1 pitch under shortstop Alexei Ramirez's glove to drive in two runs. Morneau pulled the next pitch over the right field wall to put Minnesota up 9-1.
Floyd (3-5) took a seat after Morneau's homer. He was charged with nine runs and eight hits over 3 2-3 innings.
He dropped to 0-8 in his last eight starts against Minnesota dating to Aug. 31, 2009.
It was the second consecutive miserable outing for Floyd, who gave up seven runs and 10 hits to the Angels last Wednesday.
Konerko finished with two hits in his return to the lineup. He missed two games due to a laceration and swelling over his left eye from being hit by a pitch on Friday night against the Cubs.
He drove in Chicago's second run with an RBI groundout in the ninth.
The White Sox had beaten the Twins in eight of their last 10 meetings overall, but fell to 3-11 in their last 14 home games against Minnesota.
Beckham's homer was his fifth of the season, all coming this month. It was his third in the last four games.
Ryan Doumit (calf) returned to the lineup Tuesday and went 2-for-4 with a double.
10: The number of pitches it took Walters to strike out the side in the eighth inning.
88: Pitches thrown by Floyd in 3 2/3 innings -- one fewer pitch than Walters threw in eight innings.
Wednesday: @ White Sox, 7:10 p.m. LHP Scott Diamond (3-0, 1.40) vs. LHP Chris Sale (4-2, 2.91).
Thursday: @ White Sox, 7:10 p.m. RHP Cole DeVries (0-0, 0.00) vs. RHP Phil Humber (1-2, 5.31).