CHICAGO (AP) -- White Sox manager Jerry Manuel may have found an
alternative to struggling starter Todd Ritchie -- his bullpen.
Spot starter Rocky Biddle allowed two runs in four innings and
three relievers combined to retire the final 14 Kansas City batters
as Chicago completed a three-game sweep of the Royals with a 4-2
"They did a real good job,'' Manuel said. ''(Bob) Howry pitched
well for us late.''
Bob Howry (2-2) relieved Rocky Biddle to start the fifth and
retired all nine batters he faced, striking out one.
"We knew it was a bullpen day,'' Howry said. "It is just one
of those things you didn't know who would be throwing after Rocky
until he (Manuel) calls down there.''
Starting in place of Ritchie, who skipped his outing with
inflammation in his right shoulder, Biddle gave up five hits,
striking out three and walking two. Ritchie has struggled this
season with a 5-14 record and a 6.12 ERA.
"The bullpen picked us up big time,'' Biddle said. "They knew
from the beginning of this game that they were going to be used.
They came out and did a great job.''
Kansas City has lost six in a row and seven of eight since a
nine-game winning streak. The Royals have also lost 23 of 28 on the
"We are the same guys, we approach the game the same from the
visitors dugout as the home dugout,'' Chuck Knoblauch said.
Suppan (8-9) then hit Magglio Ordonez with a pitch and struck
out Frank Thomas. After a wild pitch and a walk to Jose Valentin to
load the bases, Suppan got out of the inning by striking out Jeff
Suppan allowed two earned runs and six hits in six innings.
"Every single time he gives me what I expect from a starter,''
Royals manager Tony Pena said. "He keeps us in the game.''
Clayton led off the fourth with a double off the right-field
fence. He advanced to third when Carlos Febles made an errant throw
while trying to double Clayton off second base on a line-drive out.
Clayton then scored on Willie Harris' sacrifice fly to give the
White Sox a 3-2 lead.
Ordonez made it 4-2 with a run-scoring single off Ryan Buckvich
in the seventh.
In the third, Chuck Knoblauch singled to right and stole second.
Luis Alicea's single to center scored Knoblauch. One out later,
Raul Ibanez doubled to right, scoring Alicea to give the Royals a
Ordonez scored Chicago's first run when he led off the second
inning with a double down the left-field line and scored on Clayton
Paul Konerko had the day off. ... Amid trade rumors Kenny
Lofton missed his second straight games. ...Ordonez went 2-for-3
Sunday, making him 25-for-53 (.472) with seven homers and 15 RBI
over his last 12 games.