Chicago, IL (Sports Network) - A.J. Pierzynski's two-out, two-run double in the eighth capped Chicago's three-run inning, lifting the White Sox to a much- needed 4-3 comeback win over the Royals in the opener of a three-game series.
The victory moves Chicago within five games of the American League Central- leading Twins, who lost to the Indians earlier Friday.
"Everyone knows what's going on, there are no secrets," said Pierzynski about where the White Sox find themselves. "Every single person in this clubhouse, every single person in the stadium, everybody in major league baseball knows what the situation is, we have to try and win every game. To come from behind like that, in the eighth inning. was a huge lift for us."
J.J. Putz (7-5) threw a perfect eighth and was credited with the win, and rookie Chris Sale ended Chicago's three-game slide with a scoreless ninth.
Willie Bloomquist factored in all of Kansas City's runs, driving in two and scoring another in the club's fourth straight loss.
Bruce Chen allowed just four hits and a walk in seven innings of one-run ball for KC, while his counterpart, Mark Buehrle, was touched for three runs on seven hits in as many innings in the no-decision.
Robinson Tejeda (3-4) was on the hill trying to hold a 3-1 lead in the home eighth, and Alexei Ramirez hit a routine grounder to short with one out that Yuniesky Betancourt fielded and threw lackadaisically to first, pulling Billy Butler off the base.
The error proved costly, as Alex Rios doubled into the left-field corner to score Ramirez from first. After Paul Konerko fouled out, Manny Ramirez worked a walk in front of Pierzynski, whose line drive to center got by Gregor Blanco, allowing Rios and pinch-runner Brent Lillibridge to score the tying and go-ahead runs.
"He's a tough hitter in those situations," said Kansas City skipper Ned Yost about the veteran receiver. "That's why they've got a good team over there because in tough situations, they clutch up. Pierzynski is one of the guys that always seems to clutch up in tough situations and he did it again tonight."
Sale, closing in place of the injured Bobby Jenks (forearm), worked around a two-out single in the ninth to record his second save of the season.
Chicago's Brent Morel opened the third inning with his first major league hit, a home run to center.
The Royals tied it in the fourth when Bloomquist's two-out double knocked in Brayan Pena, who singled with one away and advanced to second on a balk.
The visitors went ahead in the sixth, as Jai Miller singled in front of Rios in center, stole second and came around on Bloomquist's opposite-field double down the right-field line. Betancourt's base hit to right brought in Bloomquist for a 3-1 contest.
White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen was ejected from the game in the fifth inning by home plate umpire Angel Hernandez for arguing a second balk call on Buehrle...Putz was appearing in his first game since August 24. He was sidelined with right knee patella tendinitis...Chen was 0-3 with a 5.28 earned-run average in his career against the White Sox coming in...Buehrle was 7-1 with a 3.13 ERA in his previous 13 starts vs. Kansas City.