Jul 22, 2014; Chicago, IL, USA; Kansas City Royals third baseman Mike Moustakas (8) reacts after hitting a home run against Chicago White Sox pitcher Eric Surkamp (not pictured) during the eighth inning at U.S Cellular Field. Mandatory Credit: Mike DiNovo-USA TODAY Sports

Royals Defeat White Sox in Pitcher's Duel 2-1

The Kansas City Royals offense continued to sputter along this afternoon. Fortunately, they managed to produce just enough to give the Royals a 2-1 victory over the Chicago White Sox in the rubber game of the three game series.

The Royals struck first in the top half of the first inning. Lorenzo Cain led off the inning with a ground rule double, and Ned Yost immediately went to his small ball strategy. A sacrifice bunt moved Cain over to third, and Eric Hosmer followed with a fly ball to shallow center. Adam Eaton made a diving catch, allowing Cain to tag up and score the game’s first run.

Chicago came back in the bottom of the inning against Royals starter James Shields. With two outs, Jose Abreu doubled to right center, and was followed by a base hit by Adam Dunn, tying the game at 1-1. The White Sox threatened to take the lead in the bottom of the second, loading the bases with two out, but Shields got Gordon Beckham to ground out to third to end the threat.

Kansas City had their chances, but were unable to capitalize, hitting into three double plays. They loaded the bases in the top of the eighth with two outs, but pinch hitter Raul Ibanez popped out to second to end the inning. It appeared as though the Royals were going to be the victim of a plethora of wasted chances once again.

However, the Royals offense came through in the top of the ninth. Mike Moustakas led off the inning with a base hit through the shift, and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt. Nori Aoki followed with a bloop single to shallow center, and Moustakas was sent home. The throw from Adam Eaton beat Moustakas by several feet, but he managed to jar the ball loose on his slide into home, giving the Royals the go-ahead run. Two walks loaded the bases for Billy Butler, who grounded into the Royals fourth double play of the afternoon to end the inning.

That run was all that the Royals needed. Greg Holland pitched a perfect ninth, striking out two batters to close out the Royals 2-1 victory. Wade Davis picked up the win, striking out one in his flawless inning of work. Shields took a tough no-decision, allowing only the one run on six hits and a walk, striking out seven in seven innings.

Aoki and Salvador Perez each had two hits in the victory.

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