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New York at Kansas City

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N.Y. Yankees (79-62) «020000100390
Kansas City (62-78)020000000292

Chamberlain has emotional appearance, A-Rod homers in Yanks win

CBSSports.com wire reports
  •  

KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Joba Chamberlain came trotting out of the bullpen to start the seventh inning, and tears came streaming down Harlan Chamberlain's weather-beaten face.

When his son's first pitch registered 99 mph on the radar gun, the older man whooped with glee and pointed toward the scoreboard yelling, "Ninety-nine! Ninety-nine!"

Joba did not disappoint his disabled father, who was seeing him pitch in the major leagues for the first time.

On an emotional moment Friday night that seemed to resonate through the entire New York Yankees team, Joba worked two scoreless innings to preserving a one-run lead in a 3-2 victory over the Kansas City Royals.

"I imagined it. But to see it come to reality and fruition is totally amazing," Harlan said as he watched his son give up two hits and run his scoreless streak since he joined the Yankees to 14 1/3 innings over 11 games since making his debut on Aug. 7.

Disabled by polio when he was just 9 months old, the elder Chamberlain made the three-hour drive from his home in Lincoln, Neb., on Friday, along with many other family members.

"To work as hard as he has and to be on this stage, it's such a blessing," he said.

The 54-year-old Chamberlain, who is confined to a motorized scooter and lacks full use of his left arm, pumped his right hand into the air when left fielder Johnny Damon ran down Billy Butler's drive with one on and two outs in the eighth.

"Surrounded by loved ones -- it just makes it that much more enjoyable," he said through tears.

Before the game, Joba said the love and respect is mutual.

"If I can be half the man and half the father he was, I'll be very, very happy and have a great life," he said.

Afterward, Joba said he'd been able to concentrate on the game and shut out every sight, sound and emotion but one.

"I heard my sister," he said. "For some reason, that's one of those voices where you're just like, `Oh, gosh. There she is.' I wasn't even trying to hear it. That's one of those high-pitched voices you hate to hear."

He was pumped with adrenaline, he said, "but it was a good adrenaline."

And he was not surprised that his dad broke into tears at the sight of his son in a Yankees uniform.

"No, not at all. Not one bit. He's as proud a father as anybody can be,' he said. "It's good. I'm glad to have him here. At least I got to pitch."

Alex Rodriguez and Jorge Posada homered for New York, which is three games in front of Detroit in the AL wild-card race and four ahead of Seattle.

Rodriguez, limited to a designated hitter role Wednesday after spraining his ankle the previous night, returned to third base and homered for the sixth time in nine games, raising his major league-leading total to 49.

Ian Kennedy, another rookie, allowed two runs and seven hits in five innings. Last weekend, he beat Tampa Bay in his major league debut.

Kyle Farnsworth (2-1) pitched one hitless inning for the win, and Mariano Rivera got three outs for his 24th save in 27 chances.

New York, which went 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position and stranded 12 runners, went ahead in the seventh when Derek Jeter singled with two outs and Bobby Abreu doubled off Neal Musser (0-1).

Rodriguez homered off Gil Meche in the second inning, moving past Ernie Banks and Eddie Mathews with his 513th home run and gave him sole possession of 17th place. He also broke his own team record for home runs by a right-handed batter.

"It's certainly been a magical season," Rodriguez said. "I've felt it since spring training, and I just have to keep the ride going."

One out later, Posada hit his 19th homer and 11th home run in 23 at-bats.

Seven of the first 11 Royals reached against Kennedy, a 21-year-old right-hander. But then he retired the next seven in a row until Joey Gathright singled with two out in the fourth. Gathright was then thrown out trying to steal second.

Kansas City scored twice in the second with the help of a well timed hit-and-run. Alex Gordon -- Chamberlain's college teammate -- doubled leading off and scored on Jason Smith's single.

John Buck then grounded a single into right field which would have been a perfectly placed double-play ball if Smith hadn't broken for second on the pitch. As Smith ran, Robinson Cano lunged to his right toward the bag, and the ball scooted right past where the second baseman had been standing.

That brought home Gordon with the first run and put Smith on third. Then with one out, Mark Grudzielanek hit an RBI single.

Meche, who entered with the lowest run support of any qualifying AL pitcher, allowed two runs and five hits in six innings. He failed to get a win for the ninth straight start.

"I can't explain the fact that we just don't score for Gil," Royals manager Buddy Bell said. "We had their guy on the ropes a couple of times and we just weren't able to do much."

As they walked out of the visitors clubhouse, Posada and Jeter went over to shake Harlan Chamberlain's hand.

"It was a pleasure to watch you guys play," Chamberlain said.

"We're trying to keep your son in line," said a grinning Jeter. "He listened to us for the first two weeks, but now he does what he wants."

Said the proud father: "Well, he still has to listen to me. You can remind him of that."

Notes

  • RHP Roger Clemens could return to the mound in the Yankees series finale at Boston on Sept. 16. Clemens left Monday's start against Seattle after four innings and had a cortisone shot in his right elbow. The seven-time Cy Young Award winner is 6-6 with a 4.45 ERA this season.
  • The Yankees, who left the bases loaded in the sixth, seventh and eighth innings and stranded nine runners in scoring position.
 
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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Joba Chamberlain keeps his unblemished record in the bigs while making an emotional appearance.  (AP)
Joba Chamberlain keeps his unblemished record in the bigs while making an emotional appearance. (AP)

Players of the Game
New York

A. Rodriguez
AB 4
R 1
H 3
HR 1
RBI 1
Kansas City

A. Gordon
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 0
 
New York Yankees
Johnny Damon, LF5010001 .256
Derek Jeter, SS4110011 .320
Bobby Abreu, RF5011024 .288
Alex Rodriguez, 3B4131100 .315
Hideki Matsui, DH4000101 .294
Jorge Posada, C4111105 .336
Jason Giambi, 1B2000102 .246
    Doug Mientkiewicz, 1B1000000 .222
Robinson Cano, 2B4000015 .299
Melky Cabrera, CF4020010 .294
Totals3739345  
Batting
2B - Bobby Abreu (29, Musser)
HR - Alex Rodriguez (49, Meche), Jorge Posada (19, Meche)
RBI - Bobby Abreu (92), Alex Rodriguez (135), Jorge Posada (82)
2-OUT RBI - Bobby Abreu (22)
SB - Johnny Damon (23, 2nd base off Riske/Buck), Melky Cabrera (13, 2nd base off Meche/Buck)
Team LOB - 12
Fielding
PB - Jorge Posada (10)
New York Yankees
Ian Kennedy 5722320 2.25
Kyle Farnsworth (W,2-1) 1000020 4.33
Joba Chamberlain (H,6) 2200010 0.00
Mariano Rivera (S,24) 1000010 3.06
Pitches-Strikes - Ian Kennedy 87-53, Kyle Farnsworth 11-8, Joba Chamberlain 29-19, Mariano Rivera 7-6
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Ian Kennedy 4-8, Joba Chamberlain 2-3, Mariano Rivera 1-1
Batters Faced - Ian Kennedy 24, Kyle Farnsworth 3, Joba Chamberlain 8, Mariano Rivera 3
Kansas City Royals
Joey Gathright, LF4010112 .317
Mark Grudzielanek, 2B5021011 .306
Ross Gload, 1B3010113 .300
Billy Butler, DH4010004 .299
Mark Teahen, RF3000102 .288
David DeJesus, CF4000005 .267
Alex Gordon, 3B4120000 .252
Jason Smith, SS4111021 .204
John Buck, C3010010 .232
   a- Mike Sweeney, PH1000000 .256
Totals3529236  
a-grounded out for Buck in the 9th
Batting
2B - Alex Gordon (30, Kennedy)
RBI - Mark Grudzielanek (46), Jason Smith (15)
CS - Joey Gathright (5, 2nd base by Kennedy/Posada)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
E - Gil Meche 2 (3, Throwing)
Kansas City Royals
Gil Meche 6522232 3.82
Neal Musser (L,0-1) 0.2211210 4.44
Joel Peralta 0.1000000 3.71
Jimmy Gobble 0.2200000 3.35
David Riske 1.1000010 2.24
IBB - Rodriguez by Neal Musser
HBP - Jeter (by David Riske)
Pitches-Strikes - Gil Meche 105-70, Neal Musser 23-9, Joel Peralta 5-3, Jimmy Gobble 10-6, David Riske 28-17
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Gil Meche 9-7, Neal Musser 1-0, Jimmy Gobble 1-1
Batters Faced - Gil Meche 26, Neal Musser 6, Joel Peralta 1, Jimmy Gobble 4, David Riske 5
Game Information
Attendance - 27462
Game Time - 3:25
Temperature - 79
Umpires - Home - Marty Foster, First Base - Paul Schrieber, Second Base - Field Culbreth, Third Base - Travis Reininger