White Sox

Avisail Garcia comes close to cycle, drives in three as White Sox top Twins

White Sox

Avisail Garcia came close to making history but had to settle for having an exemplary day at the plate.

Garcia homered and drove in three runs to pace the White Sox to a 6-2 win over the Minnesota Twins on Saturday afternoon in front of 23,024 at Guaranteed Rate Field. He also tripled and singled, leaving him a double shy of becoming the sixth player in White Sox history to hit for the cycle. Garcia grounded out to shortstop in his final at-bat.

The White Sox jumped out to an early lead in the first inning when Melky Cabrera brought home Tyler Saladino with a groundout.

In the second inning, Garcia followed Todd Frazier’s 14-pitch walk with an RBI triple off Twins starter Adalberto Mejia, who struggled to put White Sox hitters away in his abbreviated start. The White Sox then had Geovany Soto attempt a squeeze bunt, but he missed, forcing Garcia into a potential rundown between third base and home plate. But Garcia accelerated toward home, catching Twins third baseman Miguel Sano off guard, and Sano's last-second toss to home plate was dislodged by the 6-foot-4, 240-pound Garcia for the White Sox third run of the day.

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Miguel Gonzalez was solid in his first start of 2017, allowing two runs on seven hits with two walks and seven strikeouts over six innings. The Twins' only damage against the 32-year-old right-hander came on Jason Castro's two-run home run in the sixth.

 

The White Sox quickly struck back after Castro's home run. After Frazier flipped a single into right field — his first hit of the season — Garcia blasted a 431-foot home run to center. Soto followed with his third home run of 2017, becoming the sixth player in White Sox history to hit three home runs in the first four games of the season.

The last cycle in the majors happened Sept. 28, 2016, when Pittsburgh Pirates first baseman John Jaso accomplished the feat against the Cubs. Only five players have hit for the cycle in White Sox history:

Ray Schalk (June 27, 1922)
Jack Brohamer (Sept. 24, 1977)
Carlton Fisk (May 16, 1984)
Chris Singleton (July 6, 1999)
Jose Valentin (April 27, 2000)