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Giolito Shuts Down Royals to Avoid Sweep

Lucas Giolito has mastered the Kansas City Royals, a trend that continued Sunday.

The rest of the major leagues? The Chicago White Sox hope the 6-foot-6 right-hander is ready to dominate there, too.

Giolito took a no-hit bid into the seventh inning in his first start of the season, and the White Sox beat the Royals 6-3 on Sunday to avoid a three-game sweep in the season-opening series.

Giolito (1-0) walked Whit Merrifield on four pitches to begin the game, but then retired 19 straight before Alex Gordon’s single with one out in the seventh. Gordon fouled off four consecutive pitches before lining a curveball into center field.

Giolito couldn’t finish the inning. Ryan O’Hearn drove in Gordon with a double into the right field corner, and Lucas Duda chased Giolito with an RBI single. Giolito was charged with two runs in 6 2/3 innings, allowing three hits and a walk with eight strikeouts. He threw 99 pitches.

Giolito was 10-13 with a 6.13 ERA in 2018 and led the AL in walks (90) and the majors in earned runs allowed (118). In seven starts against the Royals in his career, Giolito is 4-0 with a 2.40 ERA. In 14 starts against the other AL Central teams, Giolito has a 5.62 ERA.

Ryan Burr got the final out of the seventh to end the threat.

Yonder Alonso preserved the no-hitter with a diving stop in the sixth, and he and Jose Abreu homered on consecutive pitches in the fourth off starter Jorge Lopez (0-1).

Alex Colome pitched a perfect ninth for his first save.

Alonso had two hits and three RBIs. Four other White Sox had two hits in the game, including Abreu.

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