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Rodriguez blasts No. 513, Yankees edge Royals

Sep 8, 2007 - 5:09 AM By Alan Eskew PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

KANSAS CITY, Missouri (Ticker) - Alex Rodriguez had three hits with another milestone home run and Bobby Abreu drove in the go-ahead run as the New York Yankees defeated the Kansas City Royals, 3-2, on Friday in the opener of a three-game series.

Rodriguez and Jorge Posada homered in the second inning to give the Yankees a brief 2-0 lead. It was Rodriguez's 49th home run of the season and 513th in his career, passing Ernie Banks and Eddie Mathews for 17th on the all-time list.

The blast was Rodriguez's fourth homer in six at-bats.

The 32-year-old superstar has a great chance of collecting his third American League MVP trophy this season, posting a .313 batting average with a major league-leading 135 RBI.

"It's been a magical season," Rodriguez said. "I've got to keep the ride going. Jorge has been unbelievable. I don't have to catch everyday. At his age to have the best year of his career is really unbelievable."

He added singles in the fourth and sixth innings before being intentionally walked in the seventh inning.

"He pretty much owns me," said Royals starter Gil Meche, who gave up all three hits to Rodriguez. "I threw him three pretty good curveballs and he bounces it five times up the middle. I throw him a cutter down and away, where we wanted to, and he hit it out. He's so strong. He's a freak of nature."

Abreu's two-out double in the seventh off reliever Neal Musser (0-1) scored Derek Jeter to give the Yankees a 3-2 lead. The rookie took the loss in just his third appearance since being called up on September 1.

"I hit it good, but it's a big park," Abreu said. "The main thing was nobody caught it. It was a tough game, a close game. We left a lot of guys on base (12)."

Kyle Farnsworth (2-1) worked a spotless sixth with two strikeouts to pick up the victory.

Joba Chamberlain hurled two scoreless innings, and has not allowed a run in his first 11 major league appearances, covering 14 1/3 innings. Mariano Rivera worked a perfect ninth to log his 24th save in 27 opportunities.

The Yankees (79-62) have won three straight contests and maintained their three-game advantage over the Detroit Tigers (76-65) in the AL wild card.

The Royals loaded the bases with three walks in the first, but rookie righthander Ian Kennedy got out of that jam when David DeJesus popped up to second baseman Robinson Cano on the first pitch.

The Royals grouped four hits together in the bottom of the second for two runs. Jason Smith's single scored Alex Gordon, who led off the inning with a double. Mark Grudzielanek's single to center scored Smith and gave him his 600th career RBI.

Gil Meche, who the Royals signed to a five-year $55 million contract in the offseason, left after six innings. The 28-year-old righthander, who celebrates a birthday Saturday, allowed two runs on five hits and two walks with three strikeouts.

Meche is 0-6 in nine starts since a July 20 victory against at Detroit.

In the sixth, Meche committed a throwing error to second on Hideki Matsui's comebacker that should have been an inning-ending double play grounder. Meche threw 19 more pitches that inning after his error, his second of the game, until striking out Cano to end the sixth with the bases loaded.

"It at least cost me 20-something pitches," Meche said. "It was just stupid. It was a ball right back to me and I spun around and saw Smitty (Jason Smith) cutting across and tried to lead him to the left too much and the ball sunk down. I walked Giambi and then to Cano I threw a 3-2 changeup and left it up and geez, what a battle. I gave it all I had of what was left in the tank."

New York loaded the bases again in the eighth, but David Riske, the fifth Kansas City pitcher, struck out Abreu in a nine-pitch battle to end the inning.

Kennedy, the Yankees' 2006 first-round pick from Southern California, was making his second big league start. He went five innings and allowed two runs on seven hits, leaving with the score 2-2.

"I thought Kennedy was great," Yankees manager Joe Torre said. "He was overstriding and couldn't locate at all early. About every inning, he had to pitch out of a jam."

"I walked the bases loaded and got out of it," Kennedy added. "I didn't think it would be (like) that every time. Usually the roughest inning is the first. It was one of those days where I had to pick it up a little bit. I didn't have my best stuff."








  • AL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    NY YANKEES 0 2 0 0 0 0 1 0 0 3 9 0
    KANSAS CITY 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 2 9 2 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: NYY - IAN KENNEDY, KYLE FARNSWORTH (6TH), JOBA CHAMBERLAIN (7TH),
    MARIANO RIVERA (9TH) AND JORGE POSADA
    KAN - GIL MECHE, NEAL MUSSER (7TH), JOEL PERALTA (7TH),
    JIM

    Sep 7 11:35 PM
  • 45
    roots
    RUWTbot Added 35 roots (Close Finish)

    Yankees vs. RoyalsSep 7 11:22 PM


  • AL
    AT KANSAS CITY - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY BOBBY ABREU SCORED DEREK JETER.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, B ABREU ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: NY YANKEES 3
    KANSAS CITY 2 TOP, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR NY YANKEES: A RODRIGUEZ (.316, 3-FOR-3, HR, RBI)

    Yankees vs. RoyalsSep 7 10:29 PM


  • AL
    AT KANSAS CITY - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MARK GRUDZIELANEK SCORED JASON SMITH.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, M GRUDZIELANEK ON FIRST, J BUCK ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: NY YANKEES 2
    KANSAS CITY 2 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR KANSAS CITY: R GLOAD (.300, 0-FOR-0, BB)

    Yankees vs. RoyalsSep 7 8:55 PM


  • AL
    AT KANSAS CITY - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY JASON SMITH SCORED ALEX GORDON.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, J SMITH ON FIRST, 0 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: NY YANKEES 2
    KANSAS CITY 1 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR KANSAS CITY: J BUCK (.231, 18 HR, 47 RBI)

    Yankees vs. RoyalsSep 7 8:50 PM


  • AL
    AT KANSAS CITY - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY JORGE POSADA (19) TO RIGHT WITH 1 OUT IN
    THE 2ND OFF GIL MECHE.
    CURRENT SCORE: NY YANKEES 2, KANSAS CITY 0
    DUE UP FOR NY YANKEES: J GIAMBI (.249, 12 HR, 30 RBI)

    Yankees vs. RoyalsSep 7 8:41 PM


  • AL
    AT KANSAS CITY - SCORING UPDATE
    SOLO HOME RUN BY ALEX RODRIGUEZ (49) TO LEFT WITH 0 OUT IN
    THE 2ND OFF GIL MECHE.
    CURRENT SCORE: NY YANKEES 1, KANSAS CITY 0
    DUE UP FOR NY YANKEES: H MATSUI (.296, 23 HR, 91 RBI)

    Yankees vs. RoyalsSep 7 8:38 PM
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    Topo Added 5 roots

    Yankees vs. RoyalsSep 5 11:32 PM
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    Yankee82 Added 5 roots

    Yankees vs. RoyalsAug 25 3:26 AM