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Lucas Giolito masterful again in White Sox’ 2-0 win over Royals

Lucas Giolito struck out a career-high 11 batters and improved his record to 9-1 with 7 2⁄3 scoreless innings of three-hit ball.

Lucas Giolito remains hot on the mound.
Ed Zurga/Getty Images

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — There’s just no stopping Lucas Giolito.

The White Sox right-hander continued on a path of dominance this season by holding the Royals scoreless through 7 23 scoreless innings in a 2-0 victory Saturday, striking out a career-high 11 batters and winning his eighth consecutive start.

In this one, his fourth of the season against the Royals (20-44), Giolito (9-1, 2.28 ERA) allowed three hits — all singles — and two walks.

Sox rookie left fielder Eloy Jimenez hit his seventh homer in the second inning against righty Brad Keller to supply the only offense needed for the Sox, who snapped a three-game losing streak. Jimenez’ poke to right field just crossed the fence in front of the Royals bullpen, and it scored designated hitter Jose Rondon, who had singled. All of Jimenez’ homers have been on the road.

Those were the only runs scored against Keller (3-8), who gave up five hits, walked one and struck out four over eight innings.

Giolito is the first Sox starter with 7 23 plus scoreless innings, three hits or less and 11-plus strikeouts since Carlos Rodon in 2016. His streak of seven straight starts with a victory is the longest in baseball since the Rays’ Blake Snell won nine straight last season.

His eight-game winning streak is the longest by a Sox since Chris Sale won his 2015 finale and his first nine starts of 2016.

At a season-high 111 pitches, Giolito was lifted with two out in the eighth after Whit Merrifield’s soft ground single to center. In what his fourth start against the Royals, Giolito complemented his four-seam fastball more his slider more than his changeup in this start. Aaron Bummer retired Alex Gordon for the third out, and Alex Colome pitched a perfect ninth for his 13th save in 13 chances.

The Sox (30-33) go for the series win in the rubber game of the series Sunday. The Royals have not won a series in 15 consecutive.

Royals manager Ned Yost was ejected by plate umpire Bruce Dreckman for arguing balls and strikes.