KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- If the first 999 had been this harrowing, Mike Hargrove might never have made it to 1,000.
"I'd be dead," said the Seattle manager.
With two out and runners at first and second, a shaky Eddie Guardado struck out Angel Berroa on a 3-2 pitch Wednesday, preserving a 2-1 victory over Kansas City and giving Hargrove his 1,000th win as a major-league manager.
Aaron Sele allowed three hits in 6 1/3 innings and outdueled Kansas City's Zack Greinke, who pitched six scoreless innings. Meanwhile, Ichiro Suzuki was 0-for-4 and failed to hit safely for the first time in 20 games, ending a streak that began Sept. 20 against Oakland.
"You realize the great managers that are on that list, and to be among them is a unique honor," Hargrove said. "It says a lot about the players you've had play for you over the years. I think it's about the fact that I've done this a long time."
Hargrove, who won five division titles and two AL championships with Cleveland, was splashed with champagne as he came into the clubhouse. The milestone win made him 1,000-968 in 14 seasons and the 51st major-league manager to reach the milestone.
"I'm about 50 pounds heavier than I was when I started," he said with a smile.
"There are some things that I've learned in handling players. There are things that I believed to be true about the game when I first started managing that I've found to still be true. I tried then and I try now to make it all about the players. They're the ones who are doing it. Someone's got to drive the bus."
Suzuki, who set the major-league season record last year with 262 hits, reached in his first at-bat on a throwing error by third baseman Tony Graffanino, but ended up 0-for-4.
Suzuki's .240 career average in Kansas City is his lowest in any major-league park. He said through an interpreter that he doesn't know why Kauffman Stadium seems to present him problems.
"But there has to be a stadium where you have the least amount of hits and you have a stadium where you have the most hits," he said through a translator. "I think that's what it is. If you could hit the same in every park, that would be weird."
Sele (1-0) allowed one run, struck out three and walked two. Guardado, who had given up two ninth-inning home runs and blown a save in his previous appearance, allowed a hit and a walk before striking out Berroa.
Ruben Gotay led off the ninth with a single, but was erased on Mike Sweeney's forceout. Pinch-hitter Eli Marrero struck out, pinch-hitter Emil Brown walked and Guardado fanned Berroa for his second save.
Greinke, who'd been hit on the arm and knocked out of the game in the third inning of his previous start, was on a strict limit of 85-90 pitches. He gave up four hits in six shutout innings, but Seattle took a 2-0 lead in the seventh against Jaime Cerda (0-1). Bret Boone singled leading off and scored on Mike MacDougal's wild pitch, and Miguel Olivo's RBI single made it 2-0.
He said he had no problem with the pitch count.
"It made perfect sense to me. I felt good, but the pitch count made more sense than feeling good," he said. "It wasn't just pitching. It was also making sure your arm bounces back after every pitch."
- Seattle bullpen coach Jim Slaton reported for work Wednesday despite feeling ill. Hargrove said he had a temperature of 102.
- The Royals placed rookie 3B Mark Teahen on the 15-day DL Wednesday with a lower back strain. They purchased the contract of infielder Joe McEwing.
- Greinke has not allowed an unearned run in his major-league career, spanning 153 1/3 innings.
- Royals catcher John Buck picked Wilson Valdez off second in the second inning and threw out Valdez trying to steal second in the seventh.