Ten games ago, the Twins trailed the White Sox by two games in the standings.
This morning the Twins lead by five games. If they can complete the sweep tonight, it will be six games; even if Chicago salvages this one, a four-game lead looks pretty good from here.
The magic number is 38.
No retaliation Wednesday night. I wasn't pleased on Tuesday with Delmon Young's high forearm on A.J. Pierzynski when Young was thrown out at home, and thought it likely that there's be some brushbacks the next day. Didn't happen.
There was some gum flapping preceding that play. In the series last week against Chicago, Glen Perkins hit Carlos Quentin with a pitch, and Ozzie Guillen at least pretended to believe Perkins was throwing at "Q." But Quentin leads the league in HBP for a reason, which is that he stands on top of home plate and dives.
Before the series started, Juan Nieves, the White Sox bullpen coach, told a radio station that he's thought of urging his pitchers to punk a few Twins and see if they can start a fight. (He named Mauer specifically.)
If that's on the agenda now that the Sox are on the verge of sinking, putting it out in public in advance is really bad strategy.