As highly as Robin Ventura thinks of his bullpen, he might have just as much respect for the Kansas City Royals’ relievers.

The White Sox found out once again on Thursday afternoon why they’ve struggled against Kansas City over the last season-plus. The Royals’ bullpen followed starter Jeremy Guthrie’s sharp showing with three scoreless innings to nail down a 3-1 victory over the White Sox in front of 15,036 at U.S. Cellular Field.

Gavin Floyd (0-1) pitched well but took the loss as Aaron Crow, Kelvin Herrera and Greg Holland closed Guthrie’s win to help the Royals avoid a season-opening series sweep.

Last season, Kansas City, which won 12 of 18 meetings against the White Sox, finished with a 3.17 bullpen ERA, good for sixth in the majors.

“It’s a pretty darn good bullpen,” White Sox catcher Tyler Flowers said. “They don’t seem to make many mistakes and when they do we definitely have to be ready to take advantage of those. They have multiple weapons out there. I’d say the best thing would be to get ahead so we don’t have to see all their top-end guys.”

The White Sox didn’t have a chance to follow Flowers’ advice.