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Kansas City at Chicago

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Kansas City (47-72) «0012200005102
Chi. White Sox (61-59)103000000480

Royals 5, White Sox 4

CBSSports.com wire reports
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CHICAGO -- If the Chicago White Sox don't win the AL Central, they'll look back upon their inability to handle the last-place Kansas City Royals.

"It is frustrating, disheartening," White Sox captain Paul Konerko said Tuesday night after his team lost to Kansas City for the seventh time this season. The 5-4 defeat dropped Chicago three games behind first-place Detroit.

"All you can do is keep grinding," Konerko said. "With the amount of time left, you can overcome that. But if you start thinking about what could have been ... "

Billy Butler doubled three times, had two RBI and scored the go-ahead run on Alberto Callaspo's fifth-inning single for the Royals, who are 7-7 against the White Sox -- and 40-65 against the rest of the major leagues.

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Kansas City also got a two-run homer from John Buck and a big boost from Robinson Tejada, who pitched three dominant innings in relief of Gil Meche.

Butler became the first player this season to have three doubles in each of three games. He also did it on July 8 and Aug. 8. The 23-year-old first baseman has 41 doubles, second most in the majors.

"Billy always looks like he's in control at the plate," Royals manager Trey Hillman said. "I think his power is going to keep developing. Forty-something doubles with six weeks left is pretty impressive."

All three of Tuesday's doubles came off Freddy Garcia, who blew a 4-1 lead in his return to the team he helped win the 2005 World Series.

Garcia (0-1), whose Game 4 victory completed the Series sweep of Houston, allowed five runs on seven hits in 4 1/3 innings in his season debut. Though the 32-year-old right-hander worked very slowly, repeatedly fell behind batters and topped out at 90 mph, manager Ozzie Guillen said he was "satisfied."

"That first game out, it's not easy," Guillen said. "He handled it real well. He left a couple pitches up in the strike zone but besides that, I liked what I saw."

Injured for most of the last 2½ years after the White Sox traded him to Philadelphia, Garcia rejoined the organization June 8 after the New York Mets cut him.

He is competing against Jose Contreras, another member of the stellar 2005 rotation, to be the No. 5 starter when newcomer Jake Peavy comes off the disabled list next week. Contreras, scheduled to start Wednesday's series finale, is 0-4 with a 7.62 ERA in his last six outings.

A.J. Pierzynski's first-inning single put the White Sox up 1-0. After the Royals tied it in the third on Butler's second double, Chicago went ahead 4-1 in the bottom of the inning when Konerko homered and Carlos Quentin added a two-run shot.

Garcia promptly surrendered Buck's homer in the fourth to make it 4-3. In the fifth, Willie Bloomquist singled and scored on Butler's third double, chasing Garcia. Reliever Randy Williams gave up Callaspo's RBI single.

Bloomquist, the Royals' right fielder, cut down Chicago's bid for a tying run in the last of the fifth, throwing Quentin out at the plate.

Meche (6-9) labored through five innings, allowing four runs on eight hits and five walks but stranded nine runners to wiggle out of several jams.

"He was on the ropes," Konerko said. "We had a chance to knock him out and we didn't do it."

Tejada then struck out five while allowing no hits and one walk over the next three innings before Joakim Soria worked a scoreless ninth for his 20th save in 22 opportunities.

"You never know which Tejada you're getting," Hillman said of the hard-throwing reliever, who threw six pitches, all balls, in his previous outing. "I'm glad we got the guy we got today."

Notes

The White Sox made room for Garcia by placing OF Dewayne Wise on the DL with a shoulder strain. ... Struggling 3B Alex Gordon, a top prospect since the Royals drafted him second overall in 2005, was demoted to Triple-A Omaha. Kansas City activated reliever Kyle Farnsworth from the DL. ... Saying hard-hit RHP Scott Linebrink no longer would be the eighth-inning setup man, White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said LHP Matt Thornton would get most such assignments. ... After missing his second straight game with a sore left heel, Chicago DH Jim Thome is expected to play Wednesday.

 
Copyright 2015 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Players of the Game
Kansas City

B. Butler
AB 5
R 1
H 3
HR 0
RBI 2
Chicago

P. Konerko
AB 5
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
 

Related Video

Kansas City Royals
David DeJesus, LF4010100 .263
Willie Bloomquist, RF5220012 .258
Billy Butler, 1B5132012 .301
Mike Jacobs, DH4000014 .233
Alberto Callaspo, 2B4011010 .297
Mark Teahen, 3B4120001 .280
Mitch Maier, CF3000122 .246
John Buck, C4112022 .209
Yuniesky Betancourt, SS4000020 .236
Totals375105210  
Batting
2B - Billy Butler 3 (41, Garcia, Garcia, Garcia), Mark Teahen 2 (30, Garcia, Carrasco)
HR - John Buck (5, Garcia)
RBI - Billy Butler 2 (64), Alberto Callaspo (45), John Buck 2 (27)
2-OUT RBI - Billy Butler (22), Alberto Callaspo (23), John Buck 2 (9)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Willie Bloomquist 1
DP - Bloomquist-Buck
E - John Buck (6, Throwing), Alberto Callaspo (16, Dropped fly)
Kansas City Royals
Gil Meche (W,6-9) 5844522 4.73
Robinson Tejeda (H,2) 3000150 4.58
Joakim Soria (S,20) 1000010 2.15
HBP - Beckham (by Gil Meche)
Pitches-Strikes - Gil Meche 105-54, Robinson Tejeda 45-28, Joakim Soria 11-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Gil Meche 7-5, Robinson Tejeda 1-3, Joakim Soria 1-1
Batters Faced - Gil Meche 28, Robinson Tejeda 10, Joakim Soria 3
Chicago White Sox
Scott Podsednik, DH4000113 .294
Gordon Beckham, 3B2000220 .297
Jermaine Dye, RF4100114 .274
Paul Konerko, 1B5121002 .274
A.J. Pierzynski, C5121002 .315
Carlos Quentin, LF3112112 .230
Alex Rios, CF4010020 .262
Alexei Ramirez, SS4010010 .277
Jayson Nix, 2B3010101 .232
Totals3448468  
Batting
HR - Paul Konerko (22, Meche), Carlos Quentin (12, Meche)
RBI - Paul Konerko (71), A.J. Pierzynski (36), Carlos Quentin 2 (31)
2-OUT RBI - A.J. Pierzynski (21)
SB - Alex Rios (20, 3rd base off Meche/Buck), Jayson Nix (9, 2nd base off Meche/Buck)
Team LOB - 10
Chicago White Sox
Freddy Garcia (L,0-1) 4.1755131 10.38
Randy Williams 1100010 2.35
Octavio Dotel 1.2000120 2.63
D.J. Carrasco 1100020 3.65
Tony Pena 1100020 4.59
Pitches-Strikes - Freddy Garcia 91-53, Randy Williams 11-7, Octavio Dotel 19-11, D.J. Carrasco 15-10, Tony Pena 19-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Freddy Garcia 5-5, Randy Williams 1-1, Octavio Dotel 1-2, D.J. Carrasco 1-0
Batters Faced - Freddy Garcia 21, Randy Williams 4, Octavio Dotel 6, D.J. Carrasco 4, Tony Pena 4
Game Information
Attendance - 28812
Game Time - 3:15
Temperature - 75
Umpires - Home - Wally Bell, First Base - Mark Carlson, Second Base - Marty Foster, Third Base - Chad Fairchild