By MARK GONZALES | Associated Press
CHICAGO (AP) — Lance Lynn threw four-hit ball over six innings, Jose Abreu homered for the second consecutive game and Eloy Jiménez hit three singles as the Chicago White Sox beat the Kansas City Royals 4-1 Wednesday.
Lynn (2-4) struck out eight for the third time this season while not walking a batter for the third time in his last four starts. Rookie Bobby Witt Jr. snapped Lynn’s shutout bid by hitting a home run with one out in the sixth.
The White Sox (53-51) won for the third time in four games while remaining two games behind the Twins (55-49) and one behind the Guardians (54-50) in the AL Central. The Royals fell for the seventh time in nine games.
“It just looks like we’re benefitting from staying the course and the confidence that we’re good enough,” White Sox manager Tony La Russa said. “We have to prove it from here to the end.”
Lynn improved to 5-0 with a 1.08 ERA and 37 strikeouts in 33 1/3 innings covering his last five starts against the Royals. Witt’s homer ended Lynn’s 19-inning scoreless streak against the Royals dating to April 8, 2021.
“He mixed it up with hard sink, hard cut and just didn’t give you the same look much two times in a row,” Royals manager Mike Matheny said.
Michael Massey, who was promoted from Triple-A Omaha before the game, collected two hits off Lynn. Matheny said Massey, who attended Brother Rice High School — 25 minutes from Guaranteed Rate Field — would be given an extended look at second base.
“He takes great at-bats,” Matheny said. “What we see are professional at-bats every time. I thought he did a nice job defensively.”
Abreu provided ample run support for Lynn by hitting a three-run homer, his 14th, off Brady Singer (4-4) in the third. Abreu has driven in six runs in his last two games.
Jimenez’s first-inning single extended his hitting streak to nine games and set up an RBI single by Yoan Moncada. Jimenez is batting .471 (16 for 34) during his streak.
Singer, who pitched seven innings of one-hit ball against the Yankees in his last start July 28, allowed a season-high 11 hits.
The Royals were held hitless in the final three innings by Jake Diekman, Kendall Graveman and Liam Hendriks, who earned his 21st save.
This marked the first time the White Sox won consecutive home series since April 12-14 against the Mariners and April 15-17 against the Rays.
The game was delayed because of rain for 1 hour, 5 minutes with two outs in the bottom of the second.
“I threw twice, had hot packs on the whole time, and rode the bike,” Lynn said. “It was an hour and 10 minutes of staying hot. I’m too old to sit down.”
A moment of silence was held before the game in memory of Hall of Fame Dodgers announcer Vin Scully, who died Tuesday night.
“In all his greatness, he was so kind to everybody,” La Russa said. “He’s one of those guys, even though he was really sick, you don’t want him to die.”
Royals: In addition to Massey, C Sebastian Rivero was recalled from Double-A Northwest Arkansas. They filled the roster spots vacated by the trades of INF-OF Whit Merrifield and C Cam Gallagher, who were dealt to the Blue Jays and Padres, respectively, before Tuesday’s trade deadline.
LHP Angel Zerpa (right knee discomfort) was transferred to the 60-day injured list.
White Sox: OF Luis Robert (blurred vision, cold) will return Thursday at Texas. Robert will handle the designated hitter duties Thursday, play center field Friday, rest Saturday and return to center Sunday, La Russa said. Robert hasn’t played since July 15. ... OF Gavin Sheets (ankle soreness) was scratched from Wednesday’s lineup.
The Royals will start LHP Kris Bubic (2-6, 5.45) when they open a four-game home series Thursday against the Red Sox. Bubic allowed three runs in six innings of an 11-5 loss Friday to the Yankees.
The Sox will start RHP Johnny Cueto (4-4, 2.86) Thursday at Texas. Cueto allowed two runs in seven innings Saturday in a 3-2 win over the Athletics.
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