Ryan O’Hearn made his major league debut a memorable one Tuesday night, when his first career hit, a two-run homer, snapped a scoreless tie and lifted the Kansas City Royals to a 4-2 win over the host Chicago White Sox in the opener of a three-game series at Guaranteed Rate Field.
The Royals have won six of their past 11. The White Sox have lost five of six.
O’Hearn, 25, was recalled from Triple-A Omaha earlier Tuesday after playing 558 minor league games, and he is expected to see regular playing time down the stretch for the rebuilding Royals.
Starting as the designated hitter, he grounded out in his first at-bat in the third inning before homering to right in the fifth to score Jorge Bonifacio, who had walked.
Brett Phillips, another new member of the Royals who is likely to play almost daily the remainder of the season, hit a two-run homer in the seventh. Phillips was acquired from the Milwaukee Brewers last Friday along with minor league pitcher Jorge Lopez in exchange for Mike Moustakas.
Alex Gordon had two of the Royals’ six hits.
Danny Duffy (7-9) earned the win by wriggling in and out of trouble throughout 5 2/3 scoreless innings. Duffy allowed six hits and four walks while striking out seven.
The White Sox put at least one baserunner on in each inning against Duffy, who stranded four runners in scoring position and escaped a bases-loaded jam in the fourth.
Chicago’s Matt Davidson hit a two-run homer in the seventh off Kevin McCarthy before Tim Hill, Jason Hammel and Wily Peralta combined to record the final seven outs. Peralta walked two during a hitless ninth to earn his sixth save.
Davidson, Jose Abreu, Adam Engel and Yolmer Sanchez each had two of the White Sox’s 10 hits.
James Shields (4-13) took the loss after allowing the four runs on five hits and three walks while striking out eight over seven innings. He retired the first 10 Royals before Gordon’s single.
—Field Level Media