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The Look On David Wells' Face Says It All
Posted Aug 11, 2003
The Yankees must be getting sick of all the bad vibes surrounding their bullpen, but the vibes aren’t going to go away if the pen continues to be awful. Yankee relievers allowed seven runs over five innings after David Wells left with an injury and the Bombers and Royals combined to set an American League record with 19 doubles as Kansas City won 12-9.
Aaron Guiel’s two-RBI double in the sixth inning proved to be the difference maker. But his two-bagger was just a face in the crowd in this game.
was forced to leave the game after the third inning after aggravating his sciatic nerve yet again. The lefty has been battling the back injury for the better part of the season but has been playing through the pain. In this game, the pain appeared to be more than Wells could handle, and he left the game after allowing KC to tie it at five.
was called upon to eat some innings, and he appeared to be doing well until he ran into trouble in the sixth. He walked Mike DiFelice to lead off the inning and then allowed a single to Julio Matos. While in the process of striking out
– who was originally attempting a sacrifice bunt – DiFelice stole third and Matos stole second.
With two runners in scoring position, Guiel ripped a double down the left field line to put the Royals up for good. Angel Berroa followed with another double to left that scored Guiel and put KC up 8-6.
The Yankees hung tough throughout the game. They opened the scoring with a three-run first inning against Royals starter Paul Abbott, and took a 5-1 lead in the third on
’s 34th homerun of the season. But the pitching staff suffered a complete meltdown that kept the game just out of reach after Wells left.
started the eighth inning and left the game with two out and a runner on third for
. Orosco walked the only batter he faced and was pulled from the game. Some confusion ensued in the bullpen, as Joe Torre signaled for the right-hander.
The only problem was, there were two right-handers throwing out in left field.
started walking toward the gate, but was informed that the recently called up
was the pitcher of choice. Making his Yankees debut, Prinz allowed back-to-back doubles to start his work. After an intentional walk, he allowed another double before retiring Matos on a fly ball to right field that
had to full-on dive for. By the time the inning ended, KC was up 12-7.
The Yankees got two back in the top of the ninth, but Mike MacDougal held them down and closed out the game by getting
to ground into a game-ending double play.
The Royals pounded out a franchise-record 11 doubles in the game, including three from DiFelice. Both he and Mike Sweeney led the team with three RBI, while Guiel and Joe Randa contributed two RBI apiece.
The Yankee bats were just as hot, with
each pounding out three hits. Matsui’s solo homerun in the seventh brought the Yanks to within one run.
went 0/4 and saw his average as a Yankee drop to a pitiful .108.
Hitchcock (1-3) was charged with the loss after allowing three runs on four hits in four innings. He walked one and struck out two. Royals’ reliever D.J. Carrasco (4-4) notched the victory by pitching 1 2/3 perfect innings.
Game two of the three-game set will be on Tuesday at 8:05 pm eastern time.
(12-6, 3.35) will take the mound for the Yankees to face Kansas City’s Darrell May (5-5, 3.65).
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