Jiménez hits 3-run HR, rallies White Sox past Royals 5-3

Jul 27, 2021, 8:52 AM | Updated: 10:00 pm

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Eloy Jiménez logged his first big hit of the season, launching a go-ahead, three-run homer in the eighth inning that sent the Chicago White Sox over the Kansas City Royals 5-3 Tuesday night.

The 24-year-old slugger, who was the 2019 AL Rookie of the Year and then kept up his power surge during the pandemic-shortened season, tore a pectoral muscle in spring training. He hadn’t played in the majors until going 0 for 4 Monday night.

But Jiménez quickly made up for lost time in his second game. After hitting a single in his first at-bat, he came up in the eighth after a two-out intentional walk to Jose Abreu with Chicago trailing 3-2.

Jiménez connected for a 459-foot drive to left-center off Kyle Zimmer (4-1) to cap a four-run rally.

“I was thinking they were going to walk Jose because they didn’t think I was ready,” Jiménez said. “But I was ready for that.”

Jiménez, known more for his bat than mitt, started in left field.

“First of all, Eloy was the defensive star of the game,” Chicago manager Tony La Russa said. “That was Gold Glove stuff out there. But if I’m (Royals manager) Mike (Matheny), I make the same move. (Eloy) hadn’t taken serious at bats in four or five months.

“But that’s a legitimate home run,” he said.

The White Sox increased their AL Central lead to 9 1/2 games. They’ve been winning all season despite a lack of power — they began the game next-to-last in the AL with 106 homers, three more than the Royals.

Yoán Moncada had an RBI grounder in the eighth that got Chicago within 3-2.

The loss snapped a six-game winning streak for Kansas City.

Reynaldo Lopez (1-0) picked up the win in relief. Liam Hendriks earned his 25th save.

The Royals wasted a stellar effort by Brad Keller, who allowed one run on four hits over seven innings. He pitched on his birthday for the first time in his professional career as he turned 26.

“It’s baseball,” Keller said of the bullpen’s failure. “It’s just how the game rolls. Our bullpen has been nails all year. It’s going to happen. It’s a tough loss; no one wants to see that. Those guys have been nasty all season.”

It was Keller’s fourth straight quality start after throwing only three in his first 17 starts.

Chicago starter Dylan Cease also had a quality start, giving up two earned runs and six hits in six innings. He walked one and struck out six.

White Sox right fielder Andrew Vaughn dropped a line drive, helping the Royals score twice in the second.

Gavin Sheets hit solo homer in the fourth, giving the White Sox rookie six home runs in 63 major league at-bats.

TRAINER’S ROOM

White Sox: OF Luis Robert was transferred from High-A Winston-Salem to Triple-A Charlotte in his injury rehab assignment. Robert is coming off a right hip flexor strain, a complete tear that has left him sidelined since early May.

UP NEXT

The White Sox send RHP Lucas Giolito (8-7, 3.78 ERA) to the mound. He is 1-1 with a (six earned runs in 11 innings) against Kansas City in 2021. For his career, he is 8-3 with a 3.12 ERA in 15 starts.

The Royals will counter with LHP Kris Bubic (3-4, 4.72 ERA). Bubic has been much better out of the bullpen this season. Prior to his last start, Bubic owned a 6.34 ERA (27 earned runs in 38 1/3 innings) in his eight previous starts, and a 2.96 ERA (eight earned runs in 24 1/3 innings) in eight relief appearances. But in his last start, July 23 against Detroit, he allowed one run on six hits in six innings.

___

More AP baseball: https://apnews.com/hub/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Uruguay soccer fans pose for a picture holding images of Uruguay's players Luis Suarez, above, and ...
Associated Press

Ghana, Uruguay meet again at World Cup after 2010 drama

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Ghana and Uruguay meet at the World Cup on Friday in a repeat of one of the tournament’s most contentious games, and Luis Suarez still isn’t apologizing for his central role in the controversy 12 years ago. Uruguay striker Suarez’s deliberate handball on the goal-line at the end of extra time […]
1 day ago
Serbia's Aleksandar Mitrovic , 9, celebrates scoring his side's third goal during the World Cup gro...
Associated Press

Swiss, Serbia go head-to-head to reach World Cup round of 16

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — When Serbia plays Switzerland at the World Cup on Friday, it will be a head-to-head elimination match to get into the knockout rounds. The European rivals seemed destined for a win-and-advance final group stage match at 974 Stadium ever since the tournament draw in April placed them in Group G with […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Rossi ousts billionaire Lisin to head Olympic shooting body

SHARM EL-SHEIKH, Egypt (AP) — Italian official Luciano Rossi has beaten incumbent president and Russian billionaire Vladimir Lisin to become the new head of the governing body for Olympic shooting. Rossi beat Lisin to become president of the International Shooting Sport Federation on Wednesday in an unusually close and combative election for an Olympic federation. […]
1 day ago
Brazilian players attend a training session at the Grand Hamad stadium in Doha, Qatar, Tuesday, Nov...
Associated Press

Brazil rotates squad, Cameroon fights for World Cup survival

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Still without Neymar and already secured in the round of 16, Brazil will use its last group game at the World Cup to give playing time to its reserves. Coach Tite was expected to make changes in every position for Brazil’s match against Cameroon on Friday, when a draw will be […]
1 day ago
Associated Press

Iran’s World Cup team gets tepid welcome home, amid protests

BAGHDAD (AP) — Iran’s national soccer team received a subdued welcome home after its World Cup defeat against the United States, a match played against the backdrop of ongoing anti-government protests in Iran. One Iranian man was shot dead celebrating the American victory. The players returned from Qatar late Wednesday, a day after their 1-0 […]
1 day ago
South Korea's Son Heung-min warms up with South Korea's Lee Kang-in during a training session at Al...
Associated Press

Portugal looking to avoid Brazil by winning World Cup group

DOHA, Qatar (AP) — Back-to-back wins. Qualification with a game to spare. Cristiano Ronaldo already among the goal scorers. The group stage could hardly have gone any better for Portugal at the World Cup. There’s still one loose end to tie up. Portugal needs a point in its last Group H match against South Korea […]
1 day ago
Jiménez hits 3-run HR, rallies White Sox past Royals 5-3