De Aza, Sale lead White Sox to Opening Day win
BY DARYL VAN SCHOUWEN Staff Reporter March 31, 2014 5:48PM
Chicago White Sox's Alejandro De Aza (30) points to the ball after hitting a two run home run off Minnesota Twins starting pitcher Ricky Nolasco, also scoring Jose Abreu, during the second inning. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
Updated: March 31, 2014 10:19PM
Alejandro De Aza belted two home runs, Chris Sale pitched 7 1/3 solid innings and the White Sox got off to a clean start to the 2014 season with a 5-3 victory over the Minnesota Twins on Monday afternoon at U.S. Cellular Field.
De Aza, who started in left field over Dayan Viciedo, became the first Sox to hit two home runs on Opening Day since Minnie Minoso in 1960 against the Kansas City Athletics. He hit a two-run homer against Twins right-hander Ricky Nolasco his first time at-bat in the second inning and homered against Nolasco with nobody on in the sixth.
Cuban free agent first baseman Jose Abreu had a strong major league debut, hitting a liner for a double off the right field wall his first time up and driving in a run with a single in the third. He flied out sharply to center field his other two times at bat.
Adam Dunn also drove in a run with a sacrifice fly, scoring Conor Gillaspie on a short fly to left field.
Matt Lindstrom, who was named the closer by manager Robin Ventura, pitched the ninth inning for the save. Lindstrom was a set-up man last season.
Sale allowed three runs on five hits and one walk. He struck out eight. It was the second Opening Day victory in as many starts for Sale, who beat the Kansas City Royals 1-0 last season.
The two teams are off Tuesday and are scheduled to complete a three-game series on Wednesday and Thursday.