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Kansas City (65-94) «1011001004111
N.Y. Yankees (102-57)100020000350

Yankees fall to Royals in regular-season home finale

CBSSports.com wire reports
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NEW YORK -- Joba Chamberlain walked off the mound in the fourth inning, his head down. After another shaky start, his spot on the New York Yankees' playoff roster could be in jeopardy.

Chamberlain lasted just 3 2/3 innings and was booed by fans at Yankee Stadium during the Kansas City Royals' 4-3 victory Wednesday night, which stopped New York's seven-game winning streak.

"I understand what I've done and the situation I've put myself in," the slumping pitcher said.

Derek Jeter homered leading off the first, and Chamberlain left with a 3-1 deficit before Nick Swisher's 29th homer tied the score in the fifth, a two-run drive off Robinson Tejeda. But the Yankees ended the first regular season at their new $1.5 billion ballpark the same way they began -- with a loss.

Chamberlain allowed three runs, seven hits and four walks, throwing just 52 of 91 pitches for strikes and going to three-ball counts on six of 22 batters.

He gave up a run-scoring single to Brayan Pena in the first, a bad-hop RBI single to Mark Teahen in the third and another run-scoring single to Pena that finished his night in the fourth. It could have been worse: the Royals loaded the bases with one out in the second before Tug Hulett popped out and Billy Butler flied out.

"It was not a good start," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said.

In his first full season as a major league starter, Chamberlain wound up 9-6 with a 4.78 ERA in 31 outings, throwing 156 1/3 innings as the Yankees limited his pitches in the final two months. But he finished poorly, going 1-4 with a 7.75 ERA in his final 10 starts, giving up 56 hits in 40 2/3 innings.

With CC Sabathia, A.J. Burnett and Andy Pettitte set to start in the first round of the playoffs, Chamberlain either will go to the bullpen -- where he excelled in 2007 -- or be dropped from the division series roster.

"He's had a lot of success out of the bullpen," Girardi said. "I can't guarantee that when you put a guy in situation that he's going to revert back to his old form if we do put him in the bullpen, but he does have a lot of confidence coming out of those gates."

Chamberlain blamed his problems on poor fastball command and said the first cool weather of the autumn bothered him. He's willing to accept any postseason role, and he could get a start in later rounds.

"If they want me to fold towels, I'll fold towels," he said. "I don't really care. I'll do anything to win on this team."

New York opened its high-tech stadium on April 16 with a 10-2 defeat against Cleveland but went on to finish 57-24 (.704) at new Yankee Stadium, the third-highest winning percentage since 1901 for a team in a first-year ballpark, according to STATS LLC. The Boston Red Sox were 57-20 (.740) with one tie in 1912 at Fenway Park, and the Boston Somersets were 49-20 (.710) in 1901 at the Huntington Avenue Baseball Grounds.

Yankee Stadium finished with its first season with a major league-leading 237 home runs, tied for the 18th-most during one season at a major league ballpark, STATS LLC said. New York hit 136 home runs at home, matching the eighth-highest total in big league history.

Kansas City, which completes its season this weekend against Minnesota at the Metrodome, broke a seventh-inning tie when Teahen walked against Damaso Marte (1-3) and John Buck tripled off Sergio Mitre on a catchable drive that Swisher got turned around on and then fell down. Yuniesky Betancourt followed with a missed a squeeze bunt, and Buck was tagged out by catcher Jorge Posada.

"It's good to play teams that have something to play for, so it keeps our intensity high," manager Trey Hillman said.

Jamey Wright (3-5) pitched two innings for the win, and Joakim Soria got three outs for his 30th save in 33 chances. After Betancourt's throwing error from shortstop put runners on second and third with two outs in the ninth, Soria retired Ramiro Pena on a flyout to shallow center.

"It's a good win against a really, really, really good team," Wright said. "You want to face the best, and they probably are."

Notes

  • Home attendance was an AL-high 3.72 million, down 13 percent from last year's 4.29 million at old Yankee Stadium, which had a bigger capacity.
  • New York started all its regulars for the first time since clinching the AL East on Sunday, but began pulling some after the sixth inning. Girardi plans to use his regulars Friday at Tampa Bay when Sabathia goes for his 20th win.
 
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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Royals catcher John Buck congratulates closer Joakim Soria, who notches his 30th save of the season.  (AP)
Royals catcher John Buck congratulates closer Joakim Soria, who notches his 30th save of the season. (AP)

Players of the Game
Kansas City

J. Buck
AB 4
R 0
H 2
HR 0
RBI 1
New York

N. Swisher
AB 3
R 1
H 1
HR 1
RBI 2
 
Kansas City Royals
Mitch Maier, LF3000110 .247
Tug Hulett, 2B3100124 .059
    Luis Hernandez, 2B1000010 .179
Billy Butler, 1B3020203 .306
Brayan Pena, DH5022002 .272
Alberto Callaspo, 3B5110024 .298
Mark Teahen, RF3121102 .271
John Buck, C4021022 .242
Yuniesky Betancourt, SS4000003 .244
Josh Anderson, CF4120011 .239
Totals35411459  
Batting
2B - Alberto Callaspo (40, Chamberlain), John Buck (12, Chamberlain)
3B - John Buck (4, Mitre)
SH - Mitch Maier (7)
RBI - Brayan Pena 2 (18), Mark Teahen (49), John Buck (35)
2-OUT RBI - Brayan Pena (9)
SB - Mark Teahen (8, 2nd base off Aceves/Posada), Josh Anderson 2 (25, 2nd base off Chamberlain/Posada, 2nd base off Chamberlain/Posada)
CS - John Buck (1, Home by Mitre/Posada)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
DP - Betancourt-Butler
E - Yuniesky Betancourt (18, Throwing)
Kansas City Royals
Robinson Tejeda 5433352 3.54
Jamey Wright (W,3-5) 2000120 4.33
Roman Colon (H,6) 1000010 4.89
Joakim Soria (S,30) 1100010 2.21
Pitches-Strikes - Robinson Tejeda 81-49, Jamey Wright 24-13, Roman Colon 11-8, Joakim Soria 24-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Robinson Tejeda 3-6, Jamey Wright 3-0, Joakim Soria 1-2
Batters Faced - Robinson Tejeda 21, Jamey Wright 6, Roman Colon 3, Joakim Soria 5
New York Yankees
Derek Jeter, SS2121100 .335
    Jerry Hairston Jr., SS1000010 .250
Johnny Damon, LF2000112 .280
    Brett Gardner, CF1000000 .270
Mark Teixeira, 1B4000013 .294
    Juan Miranda, 1B0000000 .333
Alex Rodriguez, 3B3000010 .284
    Eric Hinske, 3B1000000 .245
Hideki Matsui, DH4000030 .276
Jorge Posada, C3000010 .287
    Francisco Cervelli, C1010000 .304
Robinson Cano, 2B1100200 .322
    Freddy Guzman, PR-RF1000000 .000
Nick Swisher, RF3112010 .251
    Ramiro Pena, 2B1000002 .279
Melky Cabrera, CF-LF3010000 .273
Totals3135349  
Batting
HR - Derek Jeter (18, Tejeda), Nick Swisher (29, Tejeda)
RBI - Derek Jeter (66), Nick Swisher 2 (82)
CS - Freddy Guzman (1, 2nd base by Wright/Buck)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - M. Rivera-Hairston-Miranda
New York Yankees
Joba Chamberlain 3.2733430 4.78
Alfredo Aceves 2200030 3.64
Jonathan Albaladejo 0.1000000 4.91
Damaso Marte (L,1-3) 0.1011110 9.95
Sergio Mitre 0.2100000 6.79
Phil Hughes 1000020 2.95
Mariano Rivera 1100000 1.79
WP - Sergio Mitre (3)
Pitches-Strikes - Joba Chamberlain 91-52, Alfredo Aceves 33-26, Jonathan Albaladejo 2-1, Damaso Marte 8-3, Sergio Mitre 11-6, Phil Hughes 13-11, Mariano Rivera 10-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Joba Chamberlain 1-7, Alfredo Aceves 2-1, Jonathan Albaladejo 1-0, Sergio Mitre 1-0, Mariano Rivera 2-0
Batters Faced - Joba Chamberlain 22, Alfredo Aceves 8, Jonathan Albaladejo 1, Damaso Marte 2, Sergio Mitre 2, Phil Hughes 3, Mariano Rivera 3
Game Information
Attendance - 46956
Game Time - 3:17
Temperature - 54
Umpires - Home - Tom Hallion, First Base - Tony Randazzo, Second Base - Chris Guccione, Third Base - Jerry Layne