Alejandro De Aza helped the Chicago White Sox survive a stormy few innings. The bullpen took care of the rest.
De Aza drove in a career-high four runs to lead the White Sox to their fifth straight win, 8-6 over the Minnesota Twins on Tuesday night.
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Chicago overcame a pair of three-run deficits in the middle innings, going ahead with a five-run fifth before holding on with the help of 4 1-3 shutout innings by the bullpen.
De Aza's three-run homer in the fourth tied it 3-all. He also walked and scored two runs. Paul Konerko doubled, scored twice and had an RBI during Chicago's decisive five-run rally.
"Yeah it feels great because anyway I can try to help the team, it's going to feel good," De Aza said.
Will Ohman (1-3) got the win and Sergio Santos struck out the side in the ninth for his 28th save.
"I think the bullpen is one of the strongest things we've got all year long, the most consistent," White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said. "That's a big part of American League baseball."
The comebacks got starter Zach Stewart off the hook after he allowed six runs and seven hits in 4 2-3 innings.
"I wasn't really happy with (the outing)," Stewart said. "I just didn't feel like I pitched very good. We did a great job of battling back."
Jason Kubel hit a three-run homer for Minnesota, which fell 23 games below .500 for the first time since the end of the 200 season. The Twins are 6-21 this month, ensuring the worst August in franchise history.
Twins starter Anthony Swarzak (3-5) allowed eight runs -- six earned -- over 4 1-3 innings.
"They got guys on and got them in, and that's what it's all about," Swarzak said.
The White Sox remained five games behind first-place Detroit in the AL Central. The Tigers beat Kansas City 2-1 in 10 innings earlier Tuesday.
The game came to life in the fourth with three straight three-run frames and Chicago's wild five-run fifth -- which erased a 6-3 deficit.
The White Sox sent 10 batters to the plate in the inning and were helped by an error and two hit batsmen. Michael Cuddyer threw the ball away on what might have been an inning-ending double play, opening the floodgates for Chicago.
"You finally score some runs, but as you see, defensively we didn't make enough plays again and you give it back to them," Minnesota manager Ron Gardenhire said. "Those are the frustrating things."
Konerko had an RBI double. Two runs scored on Cuddyer's miscue to tie the game 6-all. The go-ahead run scored when reliever Alex Burnett hit Gordon Beckham on the helmet with the bases loaded.
Kubel launched a drive into the back of the Twins' bullpen in right field, putting Minnesota ahead 3-0 in the fourth.
Chicago came right back with De Aza's three-run shot into the same bullpen.
"When (De Aza) hit the home run, I knew (we) were going to get some energy in the dugout, right away," Guillen said. "Seems like he's been doing everything the team needs him to do."
Stewart couldn't take advantage of the second chance, giving up three runs and exiting in the fifth. Joe Mauer laced a two-run double and scored on Cuddyer's single.
After 14 runs were scored in two innings, Chicago's bullpen quieted the game down. Ohman got the last out of the fifth, Jason Frasor threw a scoreless sixth and Chris Sale struck out four over two scoreless frames, setting up Santos.
"Everyone of the guys in our bullpen I think can be a closer and throw the ninth," Santos said. "We feel like that's our strong point. ... We're kind of going on all cylinders right now."
NOTES: Manager Ozzie Guillen said before the game that he'd like to return to the White Sox in 2012 but would only do so if his contract is extended. ... Rehabbing White Sox C A.J. Pierzynski (fractured left wrist) and RHP Phil Humber (facial contusion) appeared for Triple-A Charlotte on Tuesday. Pierzynski went hitless in three at-bats and is expected to rejoin the White Sox on Thursday. Humber, who allowed seven hits and four runs over five innings, is slated to pitch Monday at Minnesota. ... Twins 1B Justin Morneau is expected to miss several games due to mild concussion symptoms. Morneau missed the second half of last season because of a concussion. ... Minnesota's Scott Diamond will square off against Chicago's Jake Peavy in Wednesday afternoon's series finale. Diamond is seeking his first major-league win.