Who likes bunts?

The Royals scored the winning run Thursday in a 3-2 victory over the Chicago White Sox when David Lough and George Kottaras put down bunt singles after Justin Maxwell’s leadoff single in the seventh inning.

“Two bunts changed the game” manager Ned Yost said. “I mean David Lough’s two-run homer was big. Jeremy Guthrie the way he threw the ball was tremendous. But the two bunts changed the game.”

That the White Sox mishandled both bunts deserves mention. So too that the Royals after those bunts failed to cash a second-and-third opportunity with no outs.

Still ... it worked out and the Royals bounced back from two shutout losses in Seattle which eliminated their chance to reach the postseason by improving to 84-75 with three games remaining.

“That’s the goal of everyone — to sprint to the finish line” said Guthrie who allowed two runs in seven innings. “We won’t pack it in just because there’s no chance to make the playoffs.

“We’d love to win as many games as we can.”

Those 84 victories are the Royals’ highest total since their 1993 club finished 84-78. Greg Holland set a club record by getting his 46th save by working the ninth and closing out Guthrie’s victory.

Holland pitched around a two-out single in moving past Dan Quisenberry (1983) and Jeff Montgomery (1993) in the club’s record book.