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New York at Kansas City

Scoreboard
N.Y. Yankees100010000270
Kansas City «00120200x591

Royals cap rare three-game home sweep of Yanks

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- It was a terrible time for the New York Yankees to play a terrible team.

The Yankees were swept by the worst team in baseball, falling 5-2 to the Kansas City Royals on Thursday night for their first five-game losing streak in more than two years.

It's the third time in their storied history the Yankees had been swept in three games by the team with the worst record in the majors. The other times were in 2000 by Detroit and 1937 by the Philadelphia A's.

New York, after winning 16 of 18, still faces stops in Minneapolis, Milwaukee and St. Louis in its longest road trip of the year.

"You've got to give the Royals credit," said Joe Torre, who held a closed-door meeting with his team on Wednesday night.

"But again, when you have the ability that we have on this club, I think it's more an emphasis on our inability to win than somebody else's ability to win. And I take nothing away from the opposition because I understand how hard it is to play this game.

"I hoped we could limit it to a two-game losing streak. Now we have to limit it to a five-game losing streak."

The lowly Royals were energized -- maybe even a bit intimidated -- by a tough-talking new manager who's made it clear he will not tolerate careless mistakes. All of a sudden, nobody's job seemed secure.

Kansas City completed its first three-game sweep at home of the Yankees in 15 years.

"I think the most important thing is we finished these games off," said Terrence Long, who hit one of two home runs off Carl Pavano. "That was the biggest thing. We went to late innings with the lead and we finished it off."

Might the Yankees have taken the Royals lightly? Their payroll of more than $200 million dwarfs the Royals', which is not quite $40 million. Despite their three-game sweep, the Royals' record of 16-37 is still the worst in the majors.

"I don't think we take any team for granted," said the tight-lipped Pavano, who was the loser in last week's 17-1 debacle against Boston. "You can't. This is baseball."

Still, the Royals weren't sure.

"It's possible," said reliever Mike Wood, who pitched two innings of one-hit relief behind Ryan Jensen (2-1). "They have nine veterans who start every game. I don't want to say they did because I want to know we beat them at their hardest. I'm going to say they didn't take us lightly."

The Royals had gone 78 series without sweeping anyone, the longest drought in the majors since the Phillies went 79 series without a sweep from 1996-97.

"It's always nice to beat the Yankees, but throw the sweep in and it just adds a plus to everything," said Jensen, who was called up from Triple-A last month for his first major league appearance since 2003.

Jensen went five innings, giving up two runs and four hits with one walk and four strikeouts.

Rookie reliever Ambiorix Burgos got three outs for his second save, retiring pinch-hitter Ruben Sierra on a groundout with the bases loaded to end it.

Royals outfielder Shane Costa, making his major league debut, had his first RBI and his first hit, and rookie third baseman Mark Teahen had an RBI single.

Yankees third baseman Alex Rodriguez, in contrast, was 0-for-4 with three strikeouts and is hitless in his last 13 at-bats after being named AL player of the month for May.

So is Buddy Bell a miracle worker? The question seemed to rankle the new manager.

"I'm not," he said. "It (the sweep) is something the players should be proud of. They should feel good about themselves."

Matt Stairs hit Pavano's pitch into the left-field bullpen leading off the sixth. A moment later, Long hit one into the bullpen in right, making it 5-2 and bringing a roar from 25,590 fans who have had little to cheer about since a 104-loss season in 2004. Most of them were on their feet and many were waving brooms as the Yankees went down in the ninth.

Bell, who took over the team on Tuesday just hours before the first game of the series, became the only Royals manager besides Whitey Herzog to win his first three games.

Pavano (4-4) went 5 1/3 innings, allowing five runs and nine hits. After giving up only 16 home runs last season with Florida, he's already served up 13 this year.

The Royals, who swept the Yankees in New York in 1994, tied it at 1 in the third on an RBI double by Angel Berroa, then took a 3-1 lead in the fourth on Teahen's RBI single and a fielder's choice grounder by Costa in his second major league at-bat.

The Yankees got a run in the first on Hideki Matsui's sacrifice fly. Derek Jeter's RBI single in the fifth made it 3-2.

"It hurts, there's no question about that," said Torre. "But there are a lot of other guys who are hurting, too."

Notes:

  • Jeter's single in the third broke an 0-for-12 skid.
  • Mike Sweeney's line-drive single in the fourth missed Pavano's face by inches.
  • The Royals' sweepless streak wasn't even close to the major-league record of 134 series set by the Athletics from 1918-22.
  • The home run was No. 200 for Stairs, who joined Larry Walker as the only Canadian-born players with 200 homers.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Third base coach Luis Silverio celebrates Terrence Long's sixth-inning home run.  (AP)
Third base coach Luis Silverio celebrates Terrence Long's sixth-inning home run. (AP)

Players of the Game
Kansas City

T. Long
AB 4
R 2
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
New York

J. Posada
AB 3
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 0
 
New York Yankees
Derek Jeter, SS4021000 .295
Tony Womack, LF3110102 .266
Gary Sheffield, RF4010002 .323
Hideki Matsui, CF3011000 .262
Alex Rodriguez, 3B4000032 .313
Tino Martinez, 1B4000031 .245
Jorge Posada, C3120010 .285
Bernie Williams, DH3000101 .252
Robinson Cano, 2B2000000 .247
   a- Russ Johnson, PH-2B1000010 .111
   b- Ruben Sierra, PH1000003 .205
Totals322722811 
a-struck out for Cano in the 8th
b-grounded out for Johnson in the 9th
Batting
2B - Gary Sheffield (14, Jensen)
SF - Hideki Matsui (6)
RBI - Derek Jeter (21), Hideki Matsui (37)
2-OUT RBI - Derek Jeter (11)
Team LOB - 7
Fielding
DP - Jeter-Cano-T. Martinez
New York Yankees
Carl Pavano (L,4-4) 5.1955022 4.50
Tanyon Sturtze 1.2000000 2.81
Tom Gordon 1000020 3.20
Pitches-Strikes - Carl Pavano 92-58, Tanyon Sturtze 9-6, Tom Gordon 12-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Carl Pavano 7-7, Tanyon Sturtze 3-1, Tom Gordon 1-0
Batters Faced - Carl Pavano 25, Tanyon Sturtze 4, Tom Gordon 3
Kansas City Royals
Angel Berroa, SS4011010 .256
David DeJesus, CF4010001 .276
Mike Sweeney, DH4110001 .300
Matt Stairs, 1B4111021 .264
Terrence Long, RF4221010 .225
Mark Teahen, 3B3011000 .245
Shane Costa, LF3011000 .333
John Buck, C3000002 .195
Ruben Gotay, 2B3110000 .243
Totals32595045 
Batting
2B - Angel Berroa (11, Pavano), David DeJesus (8, Pavano), Terrence Long (8, Pavano)
HR - Matt Stairs (6, Pavano), Terrence Long (2, Pavano)
RBI - Angel Berroa (15), Matt Stairs (16), Terrence Long (11), Mark Teahen (13), Shane Costa (1)
2-OUT RBI - Angel Berroa (8)
Team LOB - 3
Fielding
Outfield Assists - David DeJesus 1
DP - DeJesus-Gotay, Stairs-Berroa
E - Ryan Jensen (2, missed catch)
Kansas City Royals
Ryan Jensen (W,2-1) 5422140 7.43
Mike Wood (H,3) 2100010 3.73
Andy Sisco (H,6) 0.2100010 2.64
Leo Nunez (H,1) 0.1000000 6.35
Ambiorix Burgos (S,2) 1100120 6.32
HBP - Posada (by Ambiorix Burgos)
Pitches-Strikes - Ryan Jensen 68-45, Mike Wood 20-13, Andy Sisco 10-6, Leo Nunez 5-4, Ambiorix Burgos 24-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ryan Jensen 3-8, Mike Wood 3-1, Leo Nunez 1-0, Ambiorix Burgos 1-0
Batters Faced - Ryan Jensen 20, Mike Wood 6, Andy Sisco 3, Leo Nunez 1, Ambiorix Burgos 6
Game Information
Attendance - 25590
Game Time - 2:25
Temperature - 80
Umpires - Home - Ron Kulpa, First Base - Dan Iassogna, Second Base - Dale Scott, Third Base - Tim Tschida