Chicago It took a month for Jake Peavy to show signs of being the pitcher he and the Chicago White Sox hoped for.
Peavy pitched seven-plus shutout innings in his most impressive start of the season and Alex Rios had three hits and two RBIs as the White Sox defeated the Kansas City Royals, 5-1, on Monday night.
Peavy (1-2) struck out a season-high nine batters using a sharp fastball and left to a standing ovation in the eighth inning. He didn’t allow a hit until Mitch Maier singled with two outs in the fifth.
Peavy didn’t surrender another hit until Alberto Callaspo singled and Jason Kendall doubled with two outs in the seventh. Peavy finished the inning by getting Maier to hit a soft liner to shortstop Alexei Ramirez with runners on second and third.
Peavy, who only allowed four hits, was acquired in a deadline deal on July 31, 2009, despite being on the disabled list. He was 0-2 with a 7.85 ERA in five starts in April and went winless in a full month for the first time since June of 2006 (0-3, 5.28 ERA). He lowered his ERA to 6.31.
“I got what I was looking for,” Peavy said. “This what I came here to do and it was nice to go out there and do what I know I’m capable of and now I just got to maintain this and keep putting together quality starts. Just have the season start from May on.”
Ramirez hit a solo home run and Andruw Jones had two hits and two RBIs for the White Sox.
“We played the way I think, personally the way we should be playing,” White Sox manager Ozzie Guillen said. “We got a few stolen bases, we got one home run, we played pretty good defense, the pitching was good.”