KANSAS CITY -- Welington Castillo didn't miss when getting the green light on a 3-0 pitch from Royals reliever Brandon Maurer in the eighth inning of the White Sox 4-3 victory on Saturday night at Kauffman Stadium.Castillo drove the pitch over the head of right fielder Jonathan Jay for a
KANSAS CITY -- Welington Castillo didn't miss when getting the green light on a 3-0 pitch from Royals reliever Brandon Maurer in the eighth inning of the White Sox 4-3 victory on Saturday night at Kauffman Stadium.
Castillo drove the pitch over the head of right fielder Jonathan Jay for a double to score Jose Abreu and pinch-runner Tyler Saladino with the go-ahead runs, as the White Sox picked up their second come-from-behind victory in two games. It was Castillo's first hit of the season.
"I was looking for something middle out over, something I can drive," Castillo said. "He gave it to me and I guessed right."
The three-run rally began with Yoan Moncada's home run off Maurer, who was brought in to protect a 3-1 lead. Former Royals reliever Joakim Soria held on in the ninth for his first save with the White Sox.
But it was Castillo's effort with starter Lucas Giolito making the greatest difference. Giolito worked basically with his fastball, as he struggled with commanding the rest of his pitches. Castillo helped get the right-hander through six innings and 89 pitches, as he allowed three runs on four hits while walking four and striking out one.
"Overall, Wely is MVP," Giolito said. "Helped me get through six innings. I was in line for the loss and it wasn't looking too good, but he got it done at the plate. Just a fantastic job by him."
"He didn't have his best stuff today," Castillo said. "He was a little bit side to side. So that was my conversation with him. Trying to remind him all the time you gotta go up down and not side to side. If you go side to side, your arm is going to drop and you won't command any of your pitches."
Red-hot Matt Davidson, who had three home runs on Opening Day, drove in the White Sox first run with a single in the first inning.
Royals starter Ian Kennedy worked six strong innings, giving up four hits and one run while striking out five. Lucas Duda drew a bases loaded walk in the first off Giolito, and he also had an RBI single in the third inning. Duda, a free-agent signing during Spring Training, now has five RBIs in two games for the Royals.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Kennedy's escape act: Kennedy's most impressive mound effort came in the fifth after Yolmer Sanchez singled and Adam Engel reached on a perfectly executed bunt and run. Moncada could not execute a bunt on the first pitch, eventually being called out on strikes. Kennedy then induced an inning-ending around-the-horn double play, pointing to catcher Andrew Butera with approval upon escaping unscathed.
Rare triple: The Royals took a 3-1 lead in the third inning when third baseman Mike Moustakas rifled a liner into the right-field corner and legged out a triple -- his first since May 15, 2015. Moustakas scored on Duda's bloop single to center.
"We have a really good team, a really young team. Aggressive and I think, it says a lot. We just go out and compete and have fun and whatever happens, happens." -- Castillo, on the 2-0 start
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Davidson's six RBIs are the most for the White Sox through two games since Carlos Quentin's seven in 2011.
White Sox: Right-hander Reynaldo Lopez gets the call in the series finale at 1:15 p.m. CT on Sunday at Kauffman Stadium. Lopez was 1-2 with a 3.86 ERA over five Cactus League starts and is 2-0 with a 3.44 ERA over three career starts against the Royals.
Royals: Right-hander Jason Hammel takes the mound in the series finale. Hammel was 2-0 with a 9.75 ERA in Cactus League play, while he had a 16.20 ERA against the White Sox in two starts in 2017.
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Scott Merkin has covered the White Sox for MLB.com since 2003. Read his blog, Merk's Works, follow him on Twitter @scottmerkin, on Facebook and listen to his podcast.