Offense goes cold as Sox shut out by Royals

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Offense goes cold as Sox shut out by Royals

CHICAGO -- Luke Hochevar allowed three hits in seven shutout innings Saturday night and the Kansas City Royals scored three first-inning runs off Chris Sale to beat the Chicago White Sox 5-0.Hochevar (3-3) cruised as the White Sox mustered only one real scoring threat against him all night. That came in the second on a walk and single by Alex Rios before Alexei Ramirez hit into a double play.Hochevar walked one and struck out five, and his strong effort came after two rough outings against Detroit and New York Yankees when he surrendered a total of 19 hits and 16 runs in 6 1-3 innings. Greg Holland pitched the eighth and Aaron Crow walked two in the ninth before completing the shutout.Sale (3-2), returning to the rotation after a one-appearance stint in the bullpen with a sore elbow, made his first start since May 1 and lasted five innings. The Royals sent nine batters to the plate in the first with Sale's early wildness a major factor and an error on second baseman Gordon Beckham also hurting the White Sox.Sale's first seven pitches were balls and he walked the first two batters before giving up a single to Alex Gordon that loaded the bases. Billy Butler then drove a ball into the right field corner, but when baserunner Johnny Giavotella didn't get a good break off second, just one run scored and the bases remained full.When Jeff Francoeur grounded to Beckham on a perfect double-play ball, Beckham touched second and threw wildly past first for an error and two runs scored for the Royals. An infield single by Eric Hosmer and bloop single by Irvin Falu re-loaded the bases before Sale escaped after throwing 42 pitches in the opening inning.Sale then settled down and retired nine straight at one point. He gave up seven hits and the three runs during his 103-pitch outing with two walks and three strikeouts.Alcides Escobar delivered a two-out RBI double in the eighth for Kansas City and scored on a single by Humberto Quintero.Notes:
The start of the game was delayed 56 minutes by rain. ... The teams reversed scores from Friday night's opener when the White Sox won 5-0. ... Royals reinstated right-handed reliever Greg Holland (rib cage) from the 15-day disabled list and optioned right-hander Nate Adcock to Triple-A Omaha. K.C. also signed veteran left-hander Doug Davis to a minor league deal. ... Chicago 3B Brent Morel, bothered by disc problem in his back, returned to the lineup after missing two games.

White Sox fall to Diamondbacks in series opener

White Sox fall to Diamondbacks in series opener

PHOENIX -- The red-hot White Sox ran into Zack Greinke on Monday night.

He cooled them off in a hurry.

Greinke struck out 12 hitters and Daniel Descalso blasted a three-run home run off Miguel Gonzalez as the Arizona Diamondbacks sent the White Sox to a 5-1 loss in front of 18,333 at Chase Field. The loss snapped a three-game win streak for the White Sox, who had scored 24 runs in their final two games against the Seattle Mariners.

Descalso’s three-run shot off Gonzalez followed a two-out walk of Chris Owings in the bottom of the fourth inning. It broke a scoreless tie and gave Greinke all the breathing room he needed.

Not only did Greinke strike out a dozen hitters, he limited the White Sox to four hits in 8 2/3 innings.

Omar Narvaez had two hits, the first coming after Greinke opened the game by retiring seven straight batters. Leury Garcia homered off Greinke with one out in the fifth inning to break up his bid for a shutout.

It was quite the turnaround from when the White Sox bashed Yovani Gallardo and Chris Heston on consecutive days in Seattle. The White Sox scored a combined nine first-inning runs in winning three of four against the Mariners.

Gonzalez was sharp for three innings as he faced one over the minimum. After he walked nine batters in his previous two starts, Gonzalez walked only one on Monday. The right-hander also yielded a solo home run to Paul Goldschmidt. Gonzalez allowed five runs (four earned) and seven hits in five innings. 

Luis Robert the latest high-end acquisition for White Sox

Luis Robert the latest high-end acquisition for White Sox

PHOENIX -- The White Sox rebuild has another significant addition in Luis Robert, one general manager Rick Hahn won’t discuss until the deal is final.

But that didn’t stop the White Sox general manager from dropping a massive hint during Monday’s media session at Chase Field. As he discussed each aspect of player acquisition, Hahn briefly and, it would seem purposely, paused when he brought up international prospects. Hahn said he’s pleased with how much talent the White Sox have accumulated in the last 11 months only two days after club signed Robert. While Robert is yet another critical piece to the team’s future, Hahn again suggested the White Sox are only part way through the process.

“We were obviously thrilled with the draft last year and we’re getting ready to hopefully repeat that in the coming weeks,” Hahn said. “We’ve been able to do some things internationally that, umm, nice additions to the system potentially. And the last several trades we’ve done have put us in a stronger position as an organization.

“But we’re pleased with what we’ve been able to do in the last 10-11 months (and) we know we’ve got to repeat that over the next 10-11 again to put ourselves in the position we want to be in for the long term.”

Robert is just the latest puzzle piece that the White Sox have added. Hahn started to scoop up high-end talent last June with the additions of Zack Collins, Zack Burdi and others in the amateur draft. Each of the team’s first five selections was listed in Baseball America’s top-10 White Sox prospect list when it was first issued in November. But that list was totally overhauled when the White Sox added seven more prospects in December with the trades of Adam Eaton and Chris Sale.

The addition of Robert (pronounced Robber), who could be ranked the No. 3 prospect in the White Sox farm system, is the latest big piece. He potentially gives the White Sox another big bat in the future, one that was needed as many of the recent additions have been pitchers.

The White Sox also hold the 11th overall pick in June’s draft and are hopeful for another bountiful draft class. They expect to hold a high pick in the 2018 draft as well.

And that doesn’t count the young talent they could add later this summer when the White Sox begin to sell off more pieces around the Aug. 1 trade deadline. Though the club has outperformed expectations with its 20-22 start, Hahn has always maintained the club is focused on the big picture. That view would appear to include Hahn picking up his mobile phone often over the next few months.

“We’ve received a lot of phone calls because of the talent on this roster,” Hahn said. “We’re remaining very open-minded about whatever opportunities make us better for the long run. Our focus is on doing something that’s more sustainable than one season. We’re in the same mode we were in this past offseason, looking for opportunities to find some long-term pieces to put us in a place to contend on annual basis.

“It’s gotta fit for the long term. That’s sort of the same approach for the entire offseason that was build something for the future. Some of it you’re seeing here in 2017 and some of it’s going to take a little longer.”