The Royals were heavily favored in this pitching matchup and this time they finally played like it, putting up five runs in the fourth against White Sox starter Hector Noesi and shutting down Chicago behind the arm of Danny Duffy in a 9-1 Royals win, their sixth in a row. Duffy tied a career high with nine strikeouts while walking just one over seven shutout innings. Perhaps more importantly, it took just 98 pitches to get through seven innings. The old "nibble and labor through four innings" Duffy seems to be gone, replaced by this more efficient and effective Danny Duffy.
Danny Duffy, 25, has a 2.83 ERA, 1.11 WHIP, and 42 strikeouts in 54 IP this year. So huge for the Royals, about to win their sixth straight.— Drew Silva (@drewsilv) June 14, 2014
The offense did not waste the terrific outing by Duffy. In the fourth, Leury Garcia mishandled a hot shot by Lorenzo Cain with the bases loaded to score the first two runs of the game. Mike Moustakas and Omar Infante would add RBI singles in the inning as the Royals would plate five runs off Noesi, knocking him out of the game.
The Royals held onto their 5-0 lead until the eighth when Mike Moustakas - who is having a blast playing this game - hit a solo home run, his sixth of the year. The Royals would add some icing on this cake of a day with three more in the ninth on an RBI double by Eric Hosmer and a two-run home run by Billy Butler.
The Tigers are up big early on, so first place may be out of reach this weekend, but we're keeping the pressure on. The Royals can finish up the sweep tomorrow, but tonight we celebrate in the Windy City. DUFF-MAN, OH- YEAH!