Michael Kopech struck out nine and allowed two hits over seven dominant innings, and Romy González had a two-run double for the Chicago White Sox in a 6-0 victory over the Cleveland Guardians on Wednesday.
Kopech (3-4), who retired the first 16 batters in his last start against Kansas City, did not allow a baserunner until Josh Naylor singled leading off the fifth. He walked one and extended his shutout streak to 15 innings in his last two outings, helping Chicago climb to 21-30 - a game behind Cleveland for third in the AL Central.
The Guardians only pushed one player into scoring position and were blanked for the sixth time. Andrés Giménez had the other hit off Kopech, who held the Royals and Cleveland to a combined three singles while striking out 19 in back-to-back wins.
In the month of May, Kopech is 3-1 with a 1.99 ERA in five starts, striking out 33 while surrendering just 13 hits in 31 2/3 innings. The turnaround has been dramatic after posting an 0-3 record and 7.01 ERA in April.
González’s drive into the right-field corner highlighted a five-run fourth against Guardians starter Cal Quantrill (2-3). Jake Burger and Zavala added sacrifice flies in the inning as the White Sox went up by six.
Reynaldo López and Jimmy Lambert wrapped up the combined four-hitter for Chicago, which is 7-2 since falling a season-low 14 games below .500 on May 14. The White Sox won their third straight series by taking two of three from the Guardians.
Quantrill entered the year with a perfect 14-0 record at Progressive Field but lost for the third time in four home decisions. The right-hander went four innings, giving up four hits and a season-high six earned runs, one of them on a wild pitch.
Giménez had a pair of hits and was thrown out trying to advance for the Guardians, who are 12-22 after starting the season with a 9-6 record. The defending AL Central champions have lost six of their eight home series.
Tim Anderson singled home Clint Frazier in the third to open the scoring. Former Cleveland first-round pick Frazier had two runs, singled and stole a base.
White Sox OF Luis Robert Jr. (right quadriceps) was held out of the lineup after exiting the game Tuesday, but doesn’t plan on missing additional time.
White Sox RHP Lucas Giolito (3-3, 3.62 ERA) works Thursday against Detroit as the teams begin a four-game set at Comerica Park.