Cuthbert, Duffy help Royals end 8-game skid, beat White Sox
CHICAGO (AP) A couple days ago, maybe the ball Cheslor Cuthbert hit in the third inning would've been caught at the warning track.
On Saturday, the wind and the luck were on Kansas City's side.
The World Series champion Royals ended an eight-game losing streak, with Cuthbert hitting two home runs and Danny Duffy pitching six shutout innings in a 4-1 win over the Chicago White Sox.
''No, I didn't think it would be a home run,'' Cuthbert said of what initially appeared to be just deep fly in the third. ''I hit it OK. I thought it might be off the wall.''
The Royals stopped their longest slide since an eight-game drought in May 2013.
''It's big. It was a team effort,'' Duffy said.
Kendrys Morales also homered for Kansas City.
''That's the advantage of hitting homers,'' manager Ned Yost said. ''You don't have to bunch three and four hits together.''
The White Sox lost for the 21st time in their last 29 games following back-to-back wins.
Duffy (2-1) struck out 10 and gave up three hits. He made his sixth start since rejoining the Royals' rotation.
The left-hander was sharp despite battling the 91-degree heat and a mound he described as having a ''Grand Canyon'' on the rubber and landing spot.
''I tried to shorten my stride and it might have helped me because of how bad the landing spot was,'' Duffy said. ''It was hot and my legs were struggling and the mound was pretty chewed up.''
Avisail Garcia singled in Chicago's lone run off reliever Wade Davis with two outs in the ninth.
Jose Quintana (5-7) also struck out 10 in his career-high sixth straight loss. He hasn't won since May 8 vs. Minnesota when he had a league-leading 1.38 ERA.
Quintana gave up all three homers and walked none in eight innings, but the White Sox provided no offensive support.
''I don't get it,'' third baseman Todd Frazier said. ''I don't understand when we get opportunities we squander them. We've just got to figure out a way to get something.''
The Royals hit three solo home runs for the second straight day. They moved ahead of the White Sox by a half-game in the AL Central.
Duffy escaped a second-and-third, one-out jam in the first by striking out Frazier and retiring Brett Lawrie on a lineout.
Kansas City's last eight homers have all been solo shots.
ROOM FOR ROOKIE
Prized White Sox prospect and SS Tim Anderson was back in the lineup and went 0 for 3 after getting two hits in his major league debut on Friday. Manager Robin Ventura said Anderson figures to play ''at least five days a week'' after making progress at the plate and in the field since spring training.
Yost used a new-look lineup for a second day following a 7-5 loss to Chicago on Friday night. LF Whit Merrifield led off, with SS Alcides Escobar batting second, 1B Eric Hosmer third and CF Lorenzo Cain fourth.
Royals: RHP Dillon Gee was recalled from Triple-A Omaha and LHP Scott Alexander was optioned to Omaha on Saturday. Yost said the 30-year-old Gee, who has made four starts with the Royals this year, will work out of the bullpen. . OF Brett Eibner (ankle) went 0 for 3 on Friday at Triple-A Omaha in a rehab stint.
White Sox: OF Jason Coats, recalled from Triple-A Charlotte on Friday after CF Austin Jackson was put on the 15-day DL (right meniscus tear) on Friday, was in the lineup as the DH. He went 0 for 2 with a walk.
Royals: RHP Yordano Ventura (4-4, 5.32) remains active as he appeals a nine-game suspension resulting from a fight with Baltimore's Manny Machado last Tuesday.
White Sox: LHP Carlos Rodon (2-5, 4.41) takes the mound after being pushed back from a scheduled start last Thursday (sore neck.) Rodon played catch in the outfield before Saturday's game.