<
>

Asencio's first win knocks White Sox to .500

6/5/2002

CHICAGO (AP) -- Miguel Asencio couldn't get a White Sox batter
out in his big league debut. Nearly two months later, Chicago
couldn't figure him out.

Asencio got his first major league win as the Kansas City Royals
defeated the Chicago White Sox 3-2 Tuesday night.

In his big league debut April 6 against the White Sox, Asencio
walked all four batters he faced on a total of 16 pitches.

In his third career start, Asencio (1-0) limited Chicago to four
hits and a run in 6 1-3 innings. He walked two and struck out two.

"It was another great performance by Asencio -- that's three
now,'' Royals manager Tony Pena said. "He's making it tough to
move him out of the rotation. He's been pitching well for me. He's
tough.''

Asencio has also made 10 appearances in relief this season.

Asencio was able to keep the White Sox 3-4-5 hitters in check.
FrankThomas, Magglio Ordonez and Paul Konerko went a combined
1-for-8 against Asencio. Konerko singled in the fourth inning.

The White Sox have loss eight of nine and have fallen to .500
(29-29) on the season.

"Sometimes you try too hard that you struggle and struggle
because you are too tense and not relaxed,'' Chicago third baseman
Jose Valentin said.

Mark Buehrle had his second opportunity to become the first
nine-game winner in the AL, but was not helped by a struggling
White Sox offense. In Buehrle's last two starts the White Sox have
combined for five runs. Buehrle was 5-0 against the Royals lifetime
before Tuesday's game.

"I think I would take this outing next time,'' Buehrle said.
"Because ninety percent of the time we are going to win -- when one
of our starters goes out there and throws eight innings and three
runs.''

Buehrle (8-4) pitched eight innings and gave up seven hits and
three runs.

Roberto Hernandez picked up his ninth save in 10 opportunities
but not before Tony Graffanino hit a ball off him to load the bases
with one out in the ninth. Hernandez then got Sandy Alomar to
ground into a 6-4-3 double play to end it.

"I let that ground ball get away from me, but everything else I
did -- I'll take it,'' Hernandez said.

The Royals scored in the first when Carlos Beltran hit a two-out
double off the center-field wall and Mike Sweeney followed with an
RBI single.

Buehrle got into trouble in the sixth when Beltran led off with
a double down the left-field line. After intentionally walking
Sweeney, Joe Randa followed with a base hit, scoring Beltran.
Buehrle than gave up an RBI single to Mark Quinn to give the Royals
a 3-0 lead.

In the eighth, Kenny Lofton walked and moved to second when Ray
Durham grounded out. Thomas then followed with a base hit off
reliever Corey Bailey scoring Lofton to cut the Royals lead to 3-2.

In the seventh, Jose Valentin hit a solo home run, his eighth,
to knock out Asencio.

Game notes
The start of the game was delayed by rain for 1 hour, 53
minutes. ... Ray Durham made his 11th error of the season at second
base. Durham had 10 errors last season. ... Jason Grimsley is day
to day with a stomach injury.