Jamey Carroll received quite a reception in the Twins dugout after hitting his first homer in three years. Too bad Minnesota couldn't continue the celebration with a rare win against the White Sox.
Carroll connected for the first time in 1,348 at-bats, the longest streak for a current major leaguer, but the Twins lost to Chicago for the 10th time in 13 games, 4-2 Monday night.
"That was fun," Carroll said. "I knew it was going to be something fun because it's been almost 1,400 at-bats since I did it the last time."
Monday night's game also marked Carroll's 10th year of service in the major leagues. With his wife, children, father and brothers in attendance, Carroll hit just his 13th home run in that time.
"A blind squirrel finds a nut every once in a while," Carroll said.
"He plays hard all the time, so it was really fun in the dugout when he hit the home run," Twins manager Ron Gardenhire said.
White Sox starter Hector Santiago (3-1) pitched five-plus innings and allowed one run on three hits. He struck out six and walked three. Santiago started the season as the White Sox closer and later moved to a middle reliever. The rookie was sent to Triple-A Charlotte to be stretched out as a starter.
"It's been fun because you never know what you're going to do," said Santiago. "One day you're closing, the next day you are in long relief, next day coming in against a lefty, now I'm starting. It's just fun, you never know what to expect. The other day I threw an inning, `You're done you are starting Monday.' I was like `OK, kind of shocking but' ... it's kind of exciting because you never know what is going to happen."
After falling out of sole possession of first place in the AL Central on Sunday night following a 1-6 road trip and being swept by the Tigers, the White Sox won the first of a 10-game homestand. They moved a game up on Detroit, which lost to Cleveland 3-2.
Minnesota had their chances after Carroll's first home run since Aug. 9, 2009. In the sixth, they had runners on first and second and no one out, but couldn't score. Darin Mastroianni and Joe Mauer walked to start the inning. Mastroianni stole third, but Mauer was tagged out on a close play at second. Josh Willingham then popped out to third and Justin Morneau struck out.
A one-out double by Chris Parmelee and a walk to Carroll had the Twins threatening in the seventh. Pinch-hitter Ryan Doumit hit into a force out and Ben Revere flew out to left. With a runner on first and one out in the ninth, Alexi Casilla hit into a 1-6-3 double play.
"We had opportunities but we just can't come up with a big hit right now," Gardenhire said.
Mauer doubled in the eighth off reliever Matt Thornton and scored on Morneau's single to get Minnesota back within one run.
Revere robbed Kevin Youkilis of extra bases in the fifth with a running catch on the left-center warning track.
Twins starter Samuel Deduno (5-3) allowed two runs over six on six hits. He struck out three and walked three.
"He has great stuff," Gardenhire said. "He can throw a breaking ball over just about any time and his fastball moves all over the place."
NOTES: The White Sox held a pregame tribute for former reliever and assistant coach Kevin Hickey, who died on May 14. The White Sox dedicated the batting cage in his name. ... Twins are expected to call up INF Eduardo Escobar from Triple-A Rochester on Tuesday. Escobar was acquired from the White Sox in the Francisco Liriano deal. Minnesota also plans to call up reliever Luis Perdomo from Rochester on Tuesday. ... Willingham was back in the lineup as the designated hitter after missing a game with a sore hamstring. He was 0 for 4.