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MLB: Junis strikes out career high in win over White Sox; Cubs fall; Cards shutout Pirates

Chicago Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant (17) runs to third base after Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo (44) hit a double during the fourth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Wrigley Field Monday July 15, 2019, in Chicago. (Armando L. Sanchez/Chicago Tribune/TNS)
Chicago Cubs third baseman Kris Bryant (17) runs to third base after Chicago Cubs first baseman Anthony Rizzo (44) hit a double during the fourth inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Wrigley Field Monday July 15, 2019, in Chicago. (Armando L. Sanchez/Chicago Tribune/TNS)

Jakob Junis struck out a career-high 10 and Nicky Lopez drove in a pair of runs and scored twice as the Kansas City Royals beat the Chicago White Sox 5-2 on Monday night at Kauffman Stadium.

The Royals beat Lucas Giolito for the first time and thwarted his bid for a 12th victory. The right-hander entered the game 6-0 with a 2.13 ERA in 10 previous career starts against Kansas City. After an eight-game winning streak, Giolito is 1-3 with a 6.48 ERA in his last five starts.

Junis (5-8) worked seven innings and gave up one run, James McCann's 10th homer of the season.

Whit Merrifield extended his hitting streak to 13 games (.358, 19 for 53) with a bunt single in the seventh. He leads the majors with 122 hits.

Giolito (11-4) was hit on his glove hand by a wicked line drive off the bat of Lopez. The ball ricocheted into right field and Lopez got a double.

The Royals got to Giolito in the fourth inning. Alex Gordon and Hunter Dozier had back-to-back doubles for the Royals' first run. Dozier advanced on a wild pitch and scored on single by Cheslor Cuthbert, making the score 2-0.

Giolito was removed after the six innings and 94 pitches.

Junis, who entered with a 6.63 first-inning ERA, walked the first batter he faced. But, he got through five scoreless innings.

In the sixth, McCann pounded a 430-foot solo homer to left field. Jon Jay followed with his third of four hits, a double, but Junis got out of the inning.

Royals closer Ian Kennedy worked a scoreless ninth for his 14th save in 17 chances.


Homer Barlow was recalled from Triple-A Omaha on Monday to fill the roster spot vacated by pitcher Homer Bailey. Barlow was on the opening-day roster and made 30 appearances (2-1, one save, 6.19 ERA) before he was sent down July 1. He gave up three runs, including two homers, in his last two games for the Royals. He worked three scoreless outings Omaha. "I think the biggest thing was just being comfortable, just getting a little confidence back," Barlow said.

Barlow relieved Junis in the eighth and gave up a walk and single before a strikeout. Jake Diekman relieved him and the White Sox scored a run on an error before the lefty pitched out of a bases-loaded jam.


Right-hander Jonathan Bowlan pitched a nine-inning no-hitter for the Royals' Class A club in Wilmington, Delaware, with nine strikeouts and no walks in a 3-0 win over Carolina. One Carolina batter reached on an error in the second inning. Bowlan was a second-round draft choice in 2018.


There's a different feel as the improving White Sox, who lost 100 games last season, approach the trading deadline, according to manager Rick Renteria. "I think we're in a different mode ... We're starting to settle down a little bit and starting to turn the corner in terms of who we are, in terms of acquisitions and/or moving players.

"I think they've gotten better," he said. "They're scratching the surface of where they're ultimately going to be, which may put us in a better position ... as an organization moving forward. But, definitely a different situation."


After the game, the Royals announced they had traded catcher Martin Maldonado to the Cubs for left-handed pitcher Mike Montgomery.

Montgomery was orriginally part of the Royals organization, having been drafted by Kansas City in 2008.

Reds 6, Cubs 3: Eugenio Suárez and Yasiel Puig each hit his 22nd home run of the season, and the Cincinnati Reds rallied past the Cubs in Chicago.

Jesse Winker raced home with an unearned go-ahead run to cap a two-run seventh inning that made a winner of All-Star Luis Castillo.

Curt Casali sent the first pitch from reliever Steve Cishek (2-5) in the seventh into the left-field bleachers to tie it at 3. Winker pinch-hit for Castillo and singled, then the Reds jumped on errors by two usually sure-handed Cubs infielders to take the lead.

Winker advanced to second when shortstop Javier Báez couldn't handle Nick Senzel's grounder. Winker came home when Suárez's hard bouncer slipped over David Bote's glove at third.

Pinch-hitter Kyle Farmer and reliever Michael Lorenzen singled home insurance runs in the eighth as Cincinnati improved to 7-3 against the NL Central leaders.

Castillo (9-3) allowed three runs on seven hits and struck out 10 through six innings. Raisel Iglesias got five outs for his 17th save.

Kyle Schwarber hit his 20th home run and doubled. Jason Heyward came through with two more singles and an RBI, but the Cubs fell flat after a three-game sweep of Pittsburgh.

Chicago's Kyle Hendricks was sharp through six innings in his third start following a 17-day stint on the injured list with shoulder inflammation. The right-hander allowed two runs and four hits.

Suárez hit a full-count pitch into the basket in left-center to put the Reds ahead 1-0 in the first.

Hendricks' defense helped him escape a two-out, bases-loaded jam in the third. Bote blocked Puig's smash down the line, recovered and then threw wide. First baseman Anthony Rizzo stretched, snared the ball and kept his right foot on the bag just long enough to record the out.

Schwarber homered to left-center with two outs in the third to tie it at 1 and end Castillo's scoreless streak at 15 1/3 innings.

The Cubs took a 3-1 lead in the fourth. Kris Bryant walked and Rizzo doubled him to third. Bryant scored on Victor Caratini's groundout and Rizzo came home on a wild pitch.

Puig's high fly to left in the sixth was pushed by a steady wind before landing the basket in left to cut it to 3-2.


Cubs president of baseball operations Theo Epstein said he'll talk to Ben Zobrist soon to get a clearer picture on when the 38-year-old utilityman might return. Zobrist is going through a divorce and has been on the restricted list since May 8.

Epstein expects the 2016 World Series MVP to rejoin the Cubs this season. "Hopefully we can get some kind of plan in place," Epstein said.

Cardinals 7, Pirates 0: Miles Mikolas pitched an eight-hitter and Tyler O'Neill hit a pair of two-run homers, leading the St. Louis Cardinals to a win over the Pittsburgh Pirates at Busch Stadium.

It was the first complete game this season and second overall for Mikolas (6-9), who lasted just four innings in his last start before the All-Star game. He struck out three and walked none while throwing 100 pitches.

It was first complete game by a Cardinals pitcher this season. Mikolas had the only one last year on May 21 against Kansas City.

Mikolas pitched out of three jams. In the fifth with two outs, he gave up singles by Corey Dickerson and Kevin Newman. A balk put runners on second and third. Mikolas got Jacob Stallings to ground out, ending the inning. In the sixth, he allowed one-out singles to Adam Frazier and Brian Reynolds, his third hit. Starling Marte grounded into an inning-ending double play. He also hit into a double play in the first inning. In the seventh, Colin Moran doubled with one out and was stranded at third.

St. Louis has won three games in a row.

O'Neill had his first career multi-homer game, and drove in four runs for the second time in the last three games. He also singled to fhinish with three hits.

The Pirates have lost four consecutive games.

Pittsburgh starter Joe Musgrove (6-8) gave up five runs and five hits in 4 2/3 innings. He struck out seven and walked three along with hitting a batter.

Dickerson had rough night in left field and figured prominently in the first two St. Louis runs.

The Cardinals scored an unearned run in the first inning. Paul Goldschmidt walked with two outs and O'Neill hit a line drive that Dickerson dropped, allowing Goldschmidt to score. Musgrove ended up striking out the side but he needed 36 pitches without allowing a hit to get out of the inning.

St. Louis went ahead 3-0 in the third. Matt Carpenter was called out at first on a close play to start the inning. After a 37-second challenge, the call was overturned. With one out, Goldschmidt hit a fly ball to deep left in front of the fence. The ball hit Dickerson's glove and popped out. It was ruled a double. An infield hit by O'Neill moved Goldschmidt to third and he came home on a sacrifice fly by Dexter Fowler.

The Cardinals chased Musgrove in the fifth. DeJong singled after Carpenter was picked off first by Stallings. After Goldschmidt struck out, Musgrove gave up a two-run homer to center field on his first pitch to O'Neill, giving St. Louis a 5-0 lead.

O'Neill got his second home run to center off reliever Kyle Crick in the seventh after Goldschmidt walked with two outs.


Carpenter fouled a ball of the top his right foot in the seventh and had to leave the game. With a 3-2 count, Tommy Edman came in to finish the at-bat. He struck out and it was charged to Carpenter.


Cardinals Hall of Famer and broadcaster Mike Shannon celebrated his 80th birthday. The two-time World Series champion has been with the Cardinals for 62 years, including nine in a St. Louis uniform. He became a broadcaster in 1972 and has been there ever since. A cake was delivered to Shannon after two innings and was shown on the scoreboard. The fans began singing "Happy Birthday" accompanied by the stadium organist.

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