Series: Game 3 of 3

Kansas City won 2-1

Game 1: Friday, April 5
Chicago 2Final
Kansas City 5
Game 2: Saturday, April 6
Chicago 14Final
Kansas City 0
Game 3: Sunday, April 7
Chicago 2Final
Kansas City 9

White Sox 2

(2-4, 2-4 away)

Royals 9

(2-3, 2-3 home)

    2:05 PM ET, April 7, 2002

    Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City, Missouri 

    123456789 R H E
    CWS 100000010 2 7 2
    KC 01000260 - 9 9 1

    W: J. Suppan (1-0)

    L: T. Ritchie (0-1)

    Thomas' broken-bat HR Suppan's only mistake

    KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Jeff Suppan knew the Kansas City Royals needed a well-pitched game Sunday after being blown out 14-0 Saturday by the Chicago White Sox.

    Frank Thomas

    Jeff Suppan

    Suppan gave the Royals just that in a 9-2 triumph over the White Sox that gave Kansas City the series two games to one. Suppan (1-0) held them to one run on six hits and no walks in seven innings. The only run he allowed came on Frank Thomas' broken-bat homer in the first.

    "I take the approach every game that I'm going to give the best I can," Suppan said. "That's my goal."

    Suppan has been the Royals' Opening-Day starter for three straight seasons, but has never won more than 10 games in a season.

    "Suppan pitched a great game," manager Tony Muser said. "He went right after them. He worked both sides of the plate real well. He kept them at bay until we broke it open."

    Suppan has yielded five home runs in two starts.

    "I've never seen one (a bat) break in half and go out," Muser said of Thomas' home run. "He's a strong guy."

    Said Thomas: "I did it two years ago against Detroit. I mis-hit it. I hit that ball today solid. It just exploded."

    The Royals took a 3-1 lead into the seventh before breaking it open with a six-run inning against three relievers.

    Brent Mayne and Donnie Sadler opened the inning with singles and moved up on Thomas' throwing error at first base. Chuck Knoblauch's one-hop double to the left-center wall snapped an 0-for-16 skid and made it 5-1.

    "Knoblauch had a clutch hit," Muser said. "He's been struggling, but I wouldn't call it a slump."

    Joe Randa capped the burst with a three-run double. The big hit came after Michael Tucker was walked intentionally.

    "Randa is swinging the bat like he was two years ago," Muser said.

    Randa hit .304 with 106 RBI in 2000, but tumbled to .253 last year.

    White Sox starter Todd Ritchie (0-1), who pitched a one-hitter against the Royals last July while with the Pittsburgh Pirates, had retired 12 straight batters entering the sixth.

    "I don't think I'm going to panic," Ritchie said. "It's just one of those things. Sometimes you get the breaks and sometimes you don't. It seems like early in the year I don't get a lot of the breaks.

    "I don't know what it is. I've just got to go out and keep battling."

    The Royals scored twice off Ritchie in the sixth for a 3-1 lead. Neifi Perez led off with a triple and Carlos Beltran was hit by a pitch. Mike Sweeney had an RBI groundout and Tucker singled home a run.

    Left-hander Damaso Martie replaced Ritchie and struck out Raul Ibanez to end the inning.

    The Royals made it 1-all in the second on Mayne's sacrifice fly.

    Thomas had a sacrifice fly in the eighth.

    Game notes

    Royals LHP Darrell May, on the disabled list with a strained groin, is scheduled to make an injury rehabilitation start Monday for Triple-A Omaha. If he has no setback, May is scheduled to start Saturday at Cleveland. ... In two starts, Suppan has walked none in 13 innings. ... The White Sox open the season with nine straight road games before their home opener Friday. ...The Royals optioned rookie right-hander Jeff Austin to Omaha after the game.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press