NEW YORK -- Yankee Stadium is the last place anyone would expect Kansas City to stop its road losing streak.
Kyle Davies won his second consecutive start since being called up from the minors and the struggling Royals earned a rare victory in the Bronx, shutting down New York 2-1 on Friday night to snap an 11-game skid away from home.
"He was great. Both his starts since he's come up, he's been very, very composed," said Kansas City skipper Trey Hillman, who managed in the Yankees' minor league system from 1990-2001. "Here and Boston are probably the two most difficult places in the American League to stay composed. As a result of staying composed, he was able to continue to command his pitches."
David DeJesus hit an RBI single and the Royals got splendid relief work from Ron Mahay and Joakim Soria to win for only the third time in 18 games overall.
They also got a break from plate umpire Ed Montague in the eighth inning.
With two on and two outs, Jason Giambi appeared to check his swing on Mahay's 3-2 pitch near his ankles. But Kansas City catcher John Buck jumped up, tagged Giambi and pumped his fist as Montague called the slugger out swinging.
"Checked swing. Close," Montague told a pool reporter. "I had him offering at the ball. I haven't looked at it."
Giambi argued vehemently and Yankees manager Joe Girardi waved his arms in disbelief from the dugout, yelling "Come on, Eddie!"
"It's over now. It doesn't matter," Giambi said. "I really love and respect Ed Montague. I would never say anything bad about him."
Soria pitched a one-hit ninth for his 13th save in 13 chances, handing Darrell Rasner (3-3) a hard-luck loss. Royals shortstop Tony Pena Jr., the son of Yankees coach Tony Pena, made a pretty play on Johnny Damon's grounder up the middle for the final out after entering as a defensive replacement.
With its first road victory since May 18 at Florida, Kansas City improved to 2-19 in its last 21 visits to Yankee Stadium -- and 6-33 since the start of the 1998 season.
New York lost for only the second time in its past nine home games.
"Obviously, you get upset with it," Girardi said, referring to Montague's call. "But we missed our opportunities. And there's no guarantee that if it's ball four that we win the game."
Davies (2-0) gave up one run and seven hits in 6 2/3 innings. The right-hander, who served up Alex Rodriguez's 500th home run last August at Yankee Stadium in his first start for the Royals, was called up from Triple-A Omaha last Saturday and beat Cleveland ace C.C. Sabathia 4-2 to end Kansas City's 12-game losing streak.
"He was extremely aggressive. He was really conscious of trying to get strike one," Buck said. "We might have caught a little break there with Giambi, but we were due for one of those."
Rasner worked in and out of trouble all night, giving up three leadoff doubles and five two-baggers in all. But the right-hander limited the damage, allowing nine hits in a career-high eight innings. He threw 118 pitches and finished strong, retiring his final eight batters.
"It's been brutal when he's been pitching. He's been doing such a good job and we can't score any runs," Damon said. "Today our offense just puttered. That shouldn't happen to our offense. We should be better than this."
Royals shortstop Mike Aviles, from nearby Middletown, pestered the Yankees while playing in front of 20-30 friends and family members. Making his second big league start after being called up from the minors May 29, he doubled to right in the third for his first career hit.
The ball was taken out of play as a keepsake, but Aviles wasn't through. He hit another leadoff double in the fifth and scored on DeJesus' one-out single.
"What made it feel better was the win. It's almost like the cherry on top," Aviles said.
Jose Guillen opened the sixth with a double, went to third on Miguel Olivo's single and scored when Mark Teahen grounded into a hard-hit double play.
Robinson Cano doubled for the second time in the seventh and scored on buddy Melky Cabrera's two-out single, cutting it to 2-1 and chasing Davies.