KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- All year long, they could do almost
nothing wrong. Now, the Chicago White Sox can hardly do anything
right -- and they could be in trouble.
"We're playing lousy baseball on the bases, pitching,
everything," manager Ozzie Guillen said Thursday after the Kansas
City Royals emerged with a 7-5 win over the mistake-prone White
Sox. "There's no doubt about it. We really flat-out stink. It's
not the same team I've been watching all year."
The White Sox have lost six of seven, including back-to-back
setbacks against a Kansas City team that has the worst record in
the majors. Their lead over Cleveland in the AL Central that stood
at 9½ games on Sept. 7 has shrunk to 4½.
The White Sox committed two costly baserunning blunders and gave
up a season-high eight doubles to the Royals, who lost to Chicago
the first 10 times they played this year.
It was also another shaky outing for Mark Buehrle (15-8), who is
5-5 in the second half of the season.
"Ever since the All-Star break, it seems like I haven't had too
many good games. It's frustrating," said Buehrle. "We've still
got six games with Cleveland. And the way that they're playing,
they could sweep us right now. If we keep on playing like we're
playing, we're not going to the playoffs. We'll be home on Oct.
The White Sox held a seemingly commanding 15-game lead as late
as Aug. 1. The Indians haven't been this close since April 20.
"If I named all that I'm disappointed about, we might be here
all day," Guillen said. "The entire week was disappointing. Even
the game we won, I was disappointed. If we continue to play like
this, good luck."
John Buck hit a two-run double to key four-run seventh inning
for the Royals.
Ambiorix Burgos (2-5) got the victory in relief of starter Zack
Greinke, going 1 1/3 innings and giving up two runs.
Buehrle (15-8) went 6 1/3 innings for the White Sox and was
charged with four runs on nine hits, with two walks and three
Chip Ambres opened the Kansas City seventh with his second
double. With one out, Emil Brown chased Buehrle with an RBI single
that put the Royals on top 3-2. Angel Berroa singled off reliever
Luis Vizcaino ahead of Buck's double. A walk and an infield single
loaded the bases, and Vizcaino walked in the sixth run.
Tadahito Iguchi's pinch three-run double off Andrew Sisco sliced
the Royals' lead to 6-5 in the eighth, but Berroa added an RBI
single in the eighth on a cool, rainy day which drew a crowd that
seemed much smaller than the announced 9,258.
Mike MacDougal got the final four outs for his 19th save in 22
Jermaine Dye hit a solo home run in the second inning and Carl
Everett had an RBI single for a 2-0 Chicago lead. The Royals tied
it the third on Brown's RBI double and a sacrifice fly by Berroa.
In the second inning, A.J. Pierzynski singled after Dye's home
run but was easily thrown out while attempting to score on Joe
Carl Everett was hit by a pitch with one out in the sixth and
went to third on Dye's double. But he overran the bag and was
tagged out trying to get back.
Greinke managed to avoid becoming the major leagues' first
"I got bailed out by the defense and by bad baserunning," he
said. "They're playing for a lot. You can see how pumped-up they
Dye leads AL right fielders with 28 home runs. ... Scott
Podsednik, caught trying to steal second base in the first inning,
has been thrown out a major league-leading 21 times. ... Buehrle's
ERA, the second-best in the AL coming in, rose from 3.13 to 3.21.
... Before they rallied for three runs in the ninth for a 10-9
victory on Wednesday night, the Royals had lost 158 of 159 games
when they trailed entering the ninth. ... The Royals had four wild
pitches in the three-game series.