Jim Rooker earned his first major league win in style, pitching a complete-game shutout and holding the White Sox to three hits in a 7-0 trouncing at Municipal Stadium.
Rooker had lost his first six decisions of the year and entered the game with an ERA of 6.94 (he would finish the season with a 3.75 mark), but he had no problems shutting down Chicago. He yielded just three singles and four walks, retired the first nine hitters he faced, and was able to work around two errors.
Lou Piniella started the fourth with a double and scored on Jerry Adair’s two-out single. The Royals then put the game out of reach in the fifth with a three-run outburst. Pat Kelly led off with a single and stole second. Kirkpatrick tripled to score one run. Piniella singled to score him and Buck Martinez doubled to complete the scoring and increase Kansas City’s lead to 6-0.
Rooker capped his memorable night by lacing a one-out double in the sixth and scoring the final run of the game on Schaal’s groundout.
The win moved the Royals to 38-49 and ahead of Chicago by a half-game. They were in fourth place in the AL West, 13.5 games behind Minnesota.
Box score and play-by-play: http://www.baseball-reference.com/boxes/KCA/KCA196907120.shtml
Today’s birthdays: Dan Reichert (1976)