Jun 14, 2014; Chicago, IL, USA; Kansas City Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas (center) is greeted after hitting a home run against the Chicago White Sox during the eighth inning at U.S Cellular Field. Mandatory Credit: David Banks-USA TODAY Sports

Danny Duffy Shuts Down White Sox

Kansas City Royals starter Danny Duffy shut out the White Sox over seven innings on the way to a 9-1 KC win Saturday afternoon at U.S. Cellular Field. Mike Moustakas also helped out with a 3-hit game, including his 6th home run of the season.

The Royals staked Duffy to a 5-run lead when Chicago 3rd baseman Leury Garcia booted Lorenzo Cain‘s sharp grounder to third with the bases loaded and no outs. Two unearned runs scored on the play itself, with a third coming home later in the inning. The Royals ended up parlaying 5 hits, 1 walk, and two ground-outs into 5 runs.

The victory extends Kansas City’s winning streak to a season-long six games, and pushed the team 3 games over .500 on the year at 35-32. The Royals hold sole possession of 2nd place and remain 1.5 games behind Detroit in the American League Central.

On the Mound

Danny Duffy dominated the White Sox with 7.0 shutout innings, allowing only 5 hits, 1 walk, while punching out a season-high 9 strikeouts.

Aaron Crow pitched a scoreless 8th inning despite allowing 1 hit and 1 walk.

Mike Mariot gave up Chicago’s only run in the 9th with a leadoff homer to Paul Konerko.

At the Plate

The Royals banged out 16 hits and drew 1 walk. They hit two late home runs and four doubles in the game. The offense has, at long last, woken up with Dale Sveum‘s appointment as hitting coach. Lorenzo Cain was the only regular that failed to hit safely during the game, and 7 players had more than 1 hit.

Mike Moustakas had the biggest day, going 3-4, with 2 singles, his 6th home run, 2 runs scored, and 2 RBI’s. Moustakas is showing signs of turning his season around.

Billy Butler also hit a big fly following Eric Hosmer‘s double in the 9th inning. Butler went 2-4, with a single, his 2nd home run, 2 runs scored, and 2 RBI’s. The Royals need Billy to keep hitting the ball with authority.

This and That

Saturday is the first time Danny Duffy has pitched at U.S. Cellular field since he tore his ulnar collateral ligament in 2012, which forced him to undergo Tommy John surgery on his elbow.

Danny Duffy’s parents were at the game, with his father doing multiple “Hulk” poses as his son shut down the White Sox.

It was also the second day in a row that Kansas City hung 5 runs in an inning on the White Sox.

Dugout Fun: The Royals greeted Mike Moustakas with the “silent treatment” after he banged his home run in the 8th inning. They quickly broke down and buried him with congratulations in a happy Royals dugout.

Alcides Escobar continued his 12-game hitting streak (every game in June) with 2 hits on Saturday.

Bad Baserunning: Nori Aoki led off the 9th inning with a double to deep right. He got thrown out at third trying to stretch it into a triple. While it took a perfect relay from 2B Gordon Beckham to get him, it was still bad baserunning to make the 1st out of an inning at 3rd base—even with a 7-2 lead. The mistake prevented the Royals from hanging a 10-spot on the Sox. While hardly damaging, it still was bad baseball.

White Sox fans taunted Leury Garcia with sarcastic cheers every time he fielded a grounder at 3rd after booting the ball in the 4th.

 KC Kingdom Player of the Game

Mike Moustakas gets our nod for what I hope is a breakout day. Probably Danny Duffy got robbed, but the team sorely needs Moose to turn around both his season—and his career.

The White Sox

Not only did Chicago DH Paul Konerko score the only Sox run with his solo shot in the 9th (4), he also wore out the Royals with two other hits on first pitch fastballs. Gee guys, I don’t know what your game plan was, but maybe you need to rethink that first pitch attack the next time you face Konerko (like today).

Up Next

The Royals finish off the 3 game series in Chicago looking for their 2nd consecutive series sweep. The Royals send ace James Shields (7-3, 3.44 ERA) to the mound against Brazilian Andre Rienzo (4-3, 5.25 ERA). Game time is 1:10 CST at U.S. Cellular Field in Chicago.

Box

Royals Batting AB R H RBI BB SO PA BA SLG OPS
Nori Aoki RF 5 0 1 0 0 0 5 .259 .319 .639
Omar Infante 2B 5 1 2 1 0 1 5 .246 .340 .630
Eric Hosmer 1B 5 1 2 1 0 2 5 .264 .374 .680
Billy Butler DH 4 2 2 2 1 1 5 .261 .340 .650
Alex Gordon LF 5 1 2 0 0 1 5 .283 .445 .812
Salvador Perez C 5 1 2 0 0 1 5 .272 .424 .748
Lorenzo Cain CF 5 1 0 1 0 2 5 .308 .415 .760
Mike Moustakas 3B 4 2 3 2 0 0 4 .174 .353 .588
Alcides Escobar SS 4 0 2 0 0 0 4 .290 .403 .733
Team Totals 42 9 16 7 1 8 43 .381 .619 1.014

2B: S Perez (16, off J Guerra); A Escobar (19, off J Guerra); N Aoki (11, off D Webb); E Hosmer (21, off D Webb).
HR: M Moustakas (6, off S Downs, 8th inn, 0 on, 2 outs to Deep RF Line); B Butler (2, off D Webb, 9th inn, 1 on, 1 out to Deep RF).
TB: M Moustakas 6; B Butler 5; S Perez 3; E Hosmer 3; A Escobar 3; A Gordon 2; N Aoki 2; O Infante 2.
GIDP: N Aoki (3).
RBI: B Butler 2 (28); M Moustakas 2 (24); O Infante (26); L Cain (27); E Hosmer (32).
2-out RBI: O Infante; M Moustakas.
Team LOB: 7.
With RISP: 5 for 11.
Fielding
E: M Moustakas (5).
Outfield Assists: N Aoki (A Eaton at home plate).

White Sox Batting AB R H RBI BB SO PA BA OBP SLG OPS
Adam Eaton CF 4 0 1 0 0 1 4 .259 .327 .338 .666
Gordon Beckham 2B 3 0 0 0 1 2 4 .286 .337 .412 .749
Jose Abreu 1B 3 0 0 0 1 2 4 .260 .314 .600 .914
Dayan Viciedo LF 4 0 1 0 0 0 4 .249 .303 .390 .693
Alexei Ramirez SS 4 0 1 0 0 1 4 .309 .344 .438 .782
Paul Konerko DH 4 1 3 1 0 1 4 .212 .252 .384 .636
Moises Sierra RF 4 0 1 0 0 0 4 .187 .219 .242 .461
Tyler Flowers C 4 0 0 0 0 3 4 .250 .313 .359 .672
Leury Garcia 3B 4 0 0 0 0 1 4 .232 .283 .339 .623
Team Totals 34 1 7 1 2 11 36 .206 .250 .324 .574

2B: M Sierra (2, off D Duffy).
HR: P Konerko (4, off M Mariot, 9th inn, 0 on, 0 outs to Deep LF-CF).
TB: P Konerko 6; M Sierra 2; A Ramirez; D Viciedo; A Eaton.
RBI: P Konerko (15).
Team LOB: 8.
With RISP: 1 for 6.
Fielding
DP: 1. A Ramirez-G Beckham-J Abreu.
E: L Garcia (3).
Outfield Assists: M Sierra (N Aoki at 3rd base).

Royals Pitching IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA Pit Str
Danny Duffy, W (4-5) 7 5 0 0 1 9 0 2.83 98 65
Aaron Crow 1 1 0 0 1 1 0 2.97 16 10
Michael Mariot 1 1 1 1 0 1 1 6.75 7 6
Team Totals 9 7 1 1 2 11 1 1.00 121 81
White Sox Pitching IP H R ER BB SO HR ERA Pit Str
Hector Noesi, L (2-5) 3.2 8 5 2 1 4 0 5.37 85 55
Javy Guerra 2.1 2 0 0 0 0 0 2.53 29 23
Scott Downs 2 1 1 1 0 3 1 5.56 29 20
Daniel Webb 1 5 3 3 0 1 1 3.00 26 15
Team Totals 9 16 9 6 1 8 2 6.00 169 113

Balks: None.
WP: A Crow (2).
HBP: None.
IBB: None.
Pickoffs: None.

Tags: Billy Butler Danny Duffy Kansas City Royals Mike Moustakas

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