MINNEAPOLIS -- The Minnesota Twins made quick work of James Shields on Saturday night.
Shields allowed three more home runs and lasted only 2 1/3 innings as the White Sox were routed 11-3 in front of 22,274 at Target Field. Brian Dozer, Byron Buxton and Miguel Sano all homered off Shields, who has a 7.50 ERA in 84 innings for the White Sox this season. Trevor Plouffe also homered for the Twins, who put the game out of reach with an eight-run third inning against Shields and Jacob Turner, who allowed six unearned runs.
Adam Eaton and Melky Cabrera both homered for the White Sox.
“The way they were hitting homers tonight, it wasn’t good for us,” White Sox manager Robin Ventura said. “It’s a tough one, even with Jacob coming in there. He’s pitched better for us. I know he can pitch better than that. These guys on the other side, they’ve hit a lot of homers against us. We haven’t been able to solve Dozier or Plouffe.
“They’ve been hitting a lot of homers.”
It couldn’t have started much as Eaton blasted a solo homer off ex-White Sox pitcher Hector Santiago to start the game. The homer was Eaton’s 12th of the season.
But Dozier wiped it out with a leadoff homer (his 34th) for the Twins, who also overcame another deficit to take a 3-2 lead in the second inning on a two-run shot by Buxton that traveled 448 feet, according to MLB.com.
Sano’s drive, a 438-foot blast to left, was the 26th surrendered by Shields since the White Sox acquired him from the San Diego Padres in June. Shields allowed five earned runs and five hits with four walks in 2 1/3 innings.
White Sox trainer Herm Schneider visited Shields to check on his tight back after he issued a one-out walk to start the third inning. Shields remained in the game. But Ventura said afterward the back had tightened a little on Shields, who said he felt it before the game.
Shields said he doesn’t think his back “will be a big deal.”
“It grabbed on me in the last inning there,” Shields said. “I wasn’t feeling too hot before the game, but once the game started getting going, I was fine. Then it just kind of grabbed me in the last inning there in the beginning of the inning in warm-ups and for a couple of pitches there.
“It was nothing out of the ordinary. We all get sore once in a while, but the third inning in the warm-ups, it kind of grabbed on me a little bit.
“I’ll just rest up a couple of days and see what happens.”
Michael Ynoa, Juan Minaya and Tommy Kahnle combined for 5 1/3 scoreless innings pitched for the White Sox.
Jose Abreu’s consecutive games streak of reaching base ended at 29.
Santiago improved to 3-0 against his former team with three earned runs allowed in six innings.