Keller, Mondesi push Royals past White Sox 5-3 in rainy opener

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Brad Keller pitched two-hit ball over seven shutout innings, Adalberto Mondesi tripled twice and the Kansas Royals beat the Chicago White Sox 5-3 on Thursday after the start of their season opener was delayed nearly two hours by rain.

Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Brad Keller delivers to a Chicago White Sox batter during the first inning of a baseball game at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Mo., Thursday, March 28, 2019. (AP Photo/Orlin Wagner)

Eloy Jimenez went 0 for 3 with an RBI in his major league debut for Chicago after signing a $43 million, six-year contract — a record high for a player under club control yet to appear in a big league game. The 22-year-old outfielder was nicked on the left toe by a pitch with the bases loaded in the ninth.

Jorge Soler drove in two runs and Whit Merrifield scored twice for the Royals. Merrifield extended his hitting streak to 21 games dating to last season and stole two bases — he led the majors with 45 steals a year ago.

Keller (1-0) struck out five and walked one to help the Royals improve to 18-33 on opening day. Brad Boxberger got one out for a save in his Kansas City debut.

Mondesi joined Tony Pena (2007) as the only Royals players to hit two triples in a season opener.

Carlos Rodon (0-1) started for the White Sox and was charged with three runs — two earned — and three hits in 5 1/3 innings. He struck out six and walked one.

Chicago won 14-7 in Kansas City in on opening day last year.