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Rapid Reaction: White Sox 5, Royals 2

7/19/2011

With a 5-2 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Monday, the White Sox improved to 3-1 in the second half.

How it happened: An error by Royals shortstop Alcides Escobar opened the door and the White Sox walked right on through with the go ahead runs. Mark Buehrle continued to deliver, allowing three runs or less for the 14th consecutive start. Buehrle gave up two runs in the fifth inning to erase an early lead, but the White Sox went back in front after the Royals' miscue.

What it means: No doubt the White Sox a playing better, but there is still room for improvement. If Adam Dunn and Alex Rios aren’t both going to step up in the second half, then how about one of them? The White Sox could still do better at controlling the opponents’ running game. The biggest change of late is the offense’s ability to pick up runners in scoring position, especially runners at third base with less than two outs.

Outside the box: The five runs the White Sox scored for Buehrle were the most support they have given him since June 6 against the A’s. Since that game, Buehrle had posted a loss and four no-decisions.

What's next: White Sox right-hander Jake Peavy (4-3, 5.27 ERA) will take the mound in the second game of the series. The Royals will counter with left-hander Danny Duffy (1-4, 4.85) in the 7:10 p.m. start from Kauffman Stadium. The White Sox will be facing a starter with one victory for the second consecutive day.