Garland, White Sox stave off elimination

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Jon Garland thought he had pitched
better but never had gotten better results.

Garland allowed a career-low two hits in seven innings and
Magglio Ordonez drove in two runs Thursday as the Chicago White Sox
beat the Kansas City Royals 5-1.

Kansas City's only hits off Garland (11-11) were by Raul Ibanez,
a second-inning home run and a fourth-inning single.

"I really didn't have too much control,'' Garland said. "I was
effectively wild. The only pitch I could throw for a strike was my
changeup, which kept the hitters off balance. I was around the
plate, but I wasn't putting it where I wanted to put it.''

Garland improved to 3-1 in his last four starts, throwing 72 of
104 pitches for strikes.

"I only saw a couple of his changeups. I had enough trouble
with his fastball,'' Joe Randa said. "He's the kind of pitcher if
he doesn't have his control to the outside of the plate, he's a
one-sided pitcher. Today he was able to pitch away with his

Keith Foulke finished the three-hitter, allowing a single to
Mike Sweeney.

"There was no need for him to go back out there with that many
pitches,'' White Sox manager Jerry Manuel said.

Chicago's magic number for postseason elimination remained at

Ordonez increased his RBI total to 118, third in the American
League. Alex Rodriguez began the day with 132 and Miguel Tejada
with 119.

Rookie right-hander Miguel Asencio (3-6) gave up five runs and
11 hits in 6 1/3 innings. He struck out a career-high six.

"I was impressed how he pitched,'' Royals manager Tony Pena
said. "He made just three mistakes: a two-out walk in the second
inning and back-to-back singles in the seventh after being ahead
0-2 in the count.''

Ibanez, who matched his career high with 24 homers and leads the
club with 99 RBI, left after six innings with a left thumb strain
when he was hit by runner Aaron Rowand while stretching to catch
Randa's throw on a bunt single.

Ibanez did not catch the Royals' charter flight to Detroit, but
remained behind for a MRI.

Ordonez hit an RBI single in the first, and D'Angelo Jimenez had
a two-out RBI triple in the second and scored on a single by Jose
Valentin for a 3-0 lead.

Carlos Lee homered in the fifth, a drive off the left-field
bullpen gate. Ordonez had an RBI single in the seventh.

Game notes
Lee and Valentin each had three hits. ... The White Sox
have homered in 11 straight games and 20 of 21. ... Chicago is 19-9
when Willie Harris or Jimenez bat leadoff. The White Sox were 40-46
when Kenny Lofton was the leadoff hitter. ... The Royals, hitting
.237 on the road, play 10 of their final 16 games on the road,
starting with a seven-game trip Friday. ... Royals rookie RHP Shawn
Sedlacek, 2-5 with a 10.10 ERA in his past 10 starts, has been
moved to the bullpen. ... The White Sox have been outscored 139-77
in the third inning this season.