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Royals beat White Sox 2-1 with run in 9th

Wednesday, July 23, 2014 | 7:58 p.m. CDT; updated 8:42 p.m. CDT, Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Kansas City's Mike Moustakas knocks the ball out of the glove of Chicago White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers allowing Moustakas to score the winning run during the ninth inning of Wednesday's game in Chicago.

CHICAGO — It took a hard slide for the Kansas City Royals to end their skid.

Mike Moustakas scored the tie-breaking run when he jarred the ball out of the catcher's glove in the ninth inning and the Royals beat the White Sox 2-1 Wednesday to take the three-game series.

Kansas City was victorious for the 12th time in their last 14 games at U.S. Cellular Field. They also won consecutive games for the first time since July 2-4. They are 5-10 since then.

"I feel a lot better leaving Chicago than I did after the first game in Chicago," manager Ned Yost said. "After the problems you run into, you can't lose faith. You can't start panicking. You can't think the ship is sinking. You've got to stay positive, because these guys have the ability to fight through it and get themselves out of it."

Moustakas triggered the decisive rally with a lead-off single off Zach Putnam (3-2), the last of four White Sox pitchers. Alcides Escobar bunted him over before Nori Aoki hit a flare to center field.

Adam Eaton's strong throw beat Moustakas to the plate, but catcher Tyler Flowers lost control of the ball upon contact. Flowers was charged with an error on the play.

"With the (new) rules, you kind of have to obey them," said Moustakas, who was at a four-inch, 30-pound disadvantage in the matchup. "You don't really think about trying to truck anybody. That's a big boy behind home plate there. It's probably not a good idea to go that route."

Flowers said he thought he had the ball.

"The replay looked like his knee on impact was literally straight into the webbing of the glove," Flowers said. "I wish I could have hung onto it, but there's nothing I could do different."

Yost liked the jump off second base as much as the slide itself.

"(Moustakas) got a tremendous read on Nori's base hit," Yost said. "If he doesn't get the read that he had, he doesn't have the opportunity to score."

Wade Davis (6-2) pitched one scoreless inning and Greg Holland retired the side in order in the ninth inning for his 26th save in 27 tries.

After the teams traded runs in the first inning, starters James Shields and Jose Quintana matched each other for six scoreless innings. Neither was overwhelming, but both were able to get key outs when necessary.

"(Shields) has the ability to make big pitches in crucial situations," Yost said. "That's why he's our ace."

Shields allowed six hits in seven innings He walked one batter and struck out seven.

"I just try to go out there every five days and pitch my game no matter where I'm at," Shields said.

In seven innings, Quintana gave up seven hits and two walks and struck out three batters. He remained winless (0-5) against the Royals in 11 career starts.

The no decision was the 36th for Quintana since the 2012 season, the most in the majors.

Chicago's Adam Dunn singled to tie the score at 1-1 in the first inning. The hit scored Jose Abreu, who had doubled with two outs. Abreu (sore back) was back in action after a one-game layoff.

Eric Hosmer's sacrifice fly gave the Royals a 1-0 lead.


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