Jeremy Guthrie tossed six strong innings and received just enough support from Kansas City's struggling offense in a 3-1 decision over the Chicago White Sox that gave the Royals their first win of the season.
After mustering just two runs, 12 hits and stranding 14 runners in dropping the first two tests of this season-opening series, the Royals struck three times in the top of the fifth to provide Guthrie and the bullpen a lead they didn't relinquish.
Kansas City managed just five hits in this one, but received an RBI single from Chris Getz and a run-scoring double by Alex Gordon in the fifth. Gordon finished 2-for-4 on the day.
Guthrie (1-0) yielded only one run on five hits while striking out nine Chicago hitters before giving way to Aaron Crow, Kelvin Herrera and Greg Holland, with the trio combining for a scoreless inning apiece to close out the victory.
"He did a good job," White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers said of Guthrie. "He didn't make any mistakes."
Chicago received a 4-for-4 game from Gordon Beckham, but went 1-for-6 with men in scoring position and left nine runners on base.
Gavin Floyd (0-1) pitched well for the White Sox in defeat, holding the Royals to four hits and fanning five despite being reached for all three runs in a six-inning stint.
Floyd was terrific the first time through the Kansas City order, yielding only one hit -- a Salvador Perez double in the second -- through the first four innings.
The Royals finally broke out in the fifth, however.
Eric Hosmer drew a one-out walk and raced to third on an opposite-field single from Jeff Francoeur before crossing the plate with the game's first run on Jarrod Dyson's high chopper to second. Getz then knocked in Francoeur with a base hit to center for a 2-0 lead, and took second when Chicago's Alejandro De Aza bobbled the ball on the play.
Gordon followed by ripping a double into the right-field corner to easily score Getz.
"I didn't feel any different. I was attacking like I normally do," said Floyd of the inning. "They made a couple of timely hits and got a ground ball that was a high chop. That's the way things go."
Chicago, meanwhile, was held to just a pair of singles and a walk by Guthrie over the first four frames, though it would get a run back in the fifth. After the Kansas City right-hander hit Flowers with a pitch with two out, Beckham and De Aza stroked back-to-back singles to bring the White Sox within 3-1.
The White Sox later threatened to close the gap further when facing Crow in the seventh, with consecutive base hits from Flowers and Beckham putting two on with one out. De Aza flied out, however, before Jeff Keppinger grounded back to the box to end the inning.
Chicago had the tying run at first in the ninth after Holland walked Flowers and served up Beckham's fourth single of the contest, but De Aza followed with a slow tapper to first that resulted in the final out.
Since joining the Royals in a trade with Colorado midway through last season, Guthrie has gone 2-0 with an 0.50 earned run average in five starts against the White Sox ... Kansas City went 2-for-6 with runners in scoring position after having just two hits in 13 at-bats in such situations over the first two games ... Prior to De Aza's RBI single, all six of Chicago's runs this season had come as a result of five homers the team hit over the first two outings.