Engel provides pop; arms get the stop vs. KC

Adam Engel’s three-run home run in the second was all the offense the White Sox needed in a 3-2 victory over the Royals at Kauffman Stadium Friday night, marking a second consecutive victory for the South Siders.

There wasn’t much offense for the White Sox after Engel’s blast, just two more singles through the eighth. But the combination of Dallas Keuchel, Jimmy Cordero, Evan Marshall and Alex Colomé made the slim margin work. Engel’s first homer in 2020 came off of Royals starter Kris Bubic in the second inning and scored Luis Robert and James McCann. Robert reached base after beating out what should have been a routine double-play grounder to shortstop Adalberto Mondesi, and McCann was hit in the head by a Bubic pitch but quickly moved to first.

It actually was the White Sox pitchers’ ability to retire Maikel Franco with a big inning on the line that ultimately made the difference. Franco came up with the bases loaded after one run had scored in the third, but he popped out to first baseman José Abreu. Franco came back to the plate with two on in the fifth but flew out to Robert, and in the seventh, Franco struck out swinging against Cordero with runners on first and second and two out.

Tim Anderson, who had two hits, left the game in the seventh inning with right hip soreness and was pinch-hit for by Leury García. García singled to left with Nick Madrigal on second, but Madrigal was thrown out at the plate in his MLB debut after reaching on a Mondesi throwing error.

Keuchel allowed two runs over 5 1/3 innings, threw 92 pitches and recorded 10 groundouts.