for this game

Danks pitches White Sox past Royals

Sep 21, 2008 - 11:03 PM By Marc Bowman PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

KANSAS CITY, Missouri (Ticker) -- John Danks tossed seven sterling innings on Sunday as the Chicago White Sox recorded a 3-0 victory over the Kansas City Royals in the rubber match of a three-game set.

After allowing a pair of first-inning baserunners, Danks (11-8) settled in to limit the Royals to just three hits over his final six innings of work, throwing first-pitch strikes to 23-of-27 hitters faced.

The 23-year-old lefthander needed only 94 pitches in hurling seven outstanding innings. He allowed four hits and a walk, while striking out three to snap a personal five-game losing streak.

"I was working on throwing first-pitch strikes," Danks said. "That was my goal. I think I only had four that I didn't throw a strike on. That's what helped me along, getting ahead. It was mainly with a fastball or a cutter, but I got a couple of changeups in there, too, and those guys were swinging at a lot of first pitches."

Matt Thornton replaced Danks after a leadoff single in the eighth, retiring both batters he faced before Bobby Jenks finished off Kansas City for his 29th save in 32 chances.

"Danks was outstanding and we had a couple of clutch hits," White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said. "(Paul) Konerko gave us a cushion."

With the win, the White Sox (86-69) maintained their 2 1/2-game bulge over the Minnesota Twins (84-72) for the American League Central Division crown. Minnesota beat the Tampa Bay Rays, 4-1, Sunday and will host Chicago in a key three-game series beginning Tuesday.

"Winning the series, that's always your goal," Konerko said. "It's pretty simple at this point, playing head-to-head. If we have a bad series it isn't the end of the world, but if we have a good one, that should be it."

Jim Thome plated the only run Danks would need with a first-inning sacrifice fly against Kansas City starter Brandon Duckworth.

"This was a huge game today," Guillen said. "Now we're going into Minnesota up 2 1/2 (games), so we have a little cushion. This is a grinding time. As soon as the game is over, I'm gassed. It's a relief. (The division race) is fun, but it hasn't been easy."

Thome worked a leadoff walk in the seventh and Paul Konerko followed with his 18th homer, knocking Duckworth (3-2) from the game.

"I got down 0-2 and kept battling," Konerko said. "I was trying not to strike out. He threw a sinker that stayed up. I hit it good. I hit it high, but it got out. We hit a lot of home runs, but if we do it right, we don't plan it that way. We feel like we can manufacture runs and beat teams both ways."

Duckworth pitched six-plus innings, allowing three runs on five hits and one walk with three strikeouts. The 32-year-old righthander has allowed fewer than four runs in all but one of his six starts since his August 24 call-up from Class AAA Omaha.

"I thought he was outstanding," Kansas City manager Trey Hillman said. "If we were more aggressive, they don't score in the first. And if you take away one elevated fastball to a known home run hitter, he's perfect. He made just the one bad pitch."

David DeJesus and Alberto Callaspo each extended hitting streaks - DeJesus to 12 games and Callaspo to 15 - but the Royals managed just five runners past first base, and closed out their home schedule at 38-43.








  • AL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    CHI WHITE SOX 1 0 0 0 0 0 2 0 0 3 6 0
    KANSAS CITY 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 4 2 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: CHA - JOHN DANKS, MATT THORNTON (8TH), BOBBY JENKS (8TH) AND TOBY
    HALL
    KAN - BRANDON DUCKWORTH, LEO NUNEZ (7TH), JOEL PERALTA
    (9TH) AND JOHN BUCK

    HOME RUNS: CHA

    Sep 21 4:38 PM
  • 5
    roots
    McTool Added 5 roots

    White Sox 3, Royals 0  Top 8, 0 OutsSep 21 4:02 PM


  • AL
    AT KANSAS CITY - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY PAUL KONERKO (18) TO LEFT WITH 0 OUT IN
    THE 7TH OFF BRANDON DUCKWORTH SCORED JIM THOME.
    CURRENT SCORE: CHI WHITE SOX 3, KANSAS CITY 0
    DUE UP FOR CHI WHITE SOX: A RAMIREZ (.296, 0-FOR-2)

    White Sox 3, Royals 0  Top 7, 0 OutsSep 21 3:40 PM


  • AL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    CHI WHITE SOX 1 1 2 0
    KANSAS CITY 0 0 1 (BOT 1)

    CURRENT PITCHERS: CHA - JOHN DANKS
    KAN - BRANDON DUCKWORTH

    DUE UP FOR KANSAS CITY: D DEJESUS (.302, 12 HR, 72 RBI)
    M AVILES (.321, 8 HR, 46 RBI)
    J GUILLEN (.268, 20 HR, 95

    White Sox 1, Royals 0  Bot 1, 0 OutsSep 21 2:17 PM