7:00 PM ET, August 25, 2014
Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City, Missouri
Derek Jeter's 2 RBIs send Yanks past Royals and to 5th straight win
KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Michael Pineda kept throwing strikes. The Royals kept taking them, trying in vain to drive his pitch count up. When Yankees catcher Brian McCann looked up in the third inning, his right-hander had still thrown just 35 pitches.
He knew then that Pineda was in a groove.
Pineda wound up pitching into the seventh inning Monday night to win for the first time since April 16, helping New York beat the Kansas City Royals 8-1 for its fifth straight win.
"He's got so much cut on his fastball," McCann said. "I feel like he could literally throw it every pitch and be successful. When he's like that, he's as good as anybody."
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Michael Pineda was money again Monday, earning his first win since April in the Yanks' fifth straight victory, writes Douglas Tucker. Story
In the makeup of a game rained out in early June, Pineda (3-2) gave up a solo shot to Mike Moustakas leading off the third inning. But that was about it in Pineda's third game back from the disabled list. He struck out five without a walk.
Jacoby Ellsbury drove in a run in the seventh inning with the 1,000th hit of his career, then added a two-run homer in the ninth. Derek Jeter added a pair of RBIs in his final scheduled trip to Kauffman Stadium, and Stephen Drew and Martin Prado had solo home runs.
"It's nice when you have a lot of people contribute," Yankees manager Joe Girardi said.
James Shields (12-7) allowed six runs over 6 2/3 innings for Kansas City.
"We've been playing really, really good baseball the last month or so. We're definitely not going to let just one little game take care of us," Shields said. "We're going to move onto this next series and hopefully we'll win it."
If you're willing to count the makeup against New York as a true series, it was the first time in their last 11 that the Royals have dropped one.
"It's going to happen," outfielder Alex Gordon said. "We'll bounce back. We'll be OK."
Jeter, who is retiring after the season, answered a standing ovation as he stepped to the plate in the third inning with a groundout to shortstop that gave New York a 1-0 lead.
Moustakas tied the game with his 15th homer in the bottom half.
Drew gave the Yankees the lead back in the fourth with his home run, and they piled on four more runs off Shields in the seventh to put things out of reach.
The last of the runs was scored by Ellsbury, who came home on a sacrifice fly by McCann. Ellsbury initially was ruled out at the plate, but the call was overturned after a 2-minute video review showed his left leg sliding just under catcher Salvador Perez's tag.
That was plenty of support for Pineda, who had gone through the ringer since his previous win. He served a 10-game suspension for getting caught with pine tar on his neck in a game against Boston, then landed on the DL with shoulder trouble that kept him out until mid-August.
Pineda was stuck with a pair of no-decisions in his first two starts back.
"I feel pretty good," he said. "I feel like I have good power in my arm."
The Yankees homered at least three times in a game for the seventh time this season, but it was the first time they had done it since July 9 at Cleveland.
Speaking of homers, Shields gave up at least two in a game for the seventh time this season, tied for second-most in the majors behind the Brewers' Marco Estrada with nine.
Gordon played in his 1,000th game for the Royals, making the 30-year-old outfielder the 10th player in franchise history to reach the milestone.
Royals: 1B Eric Hosmer was cleared to begin taking dry swings after sustaining a stress fracture in his right hand on July 20. "It feels good. It's healed up very nicely," Hosmer said. "We're ready to start the hitting progression."
Royals: After taking three of four in Minnesota last week, the Royals open a three-game set against the Twins at home. LHP Danny Duffy is on the mound for Kansas City.
Yankees: RHP Brandon McCarthy makes his ninth start with the Yankees to open a three-game series in Detroit, one of the clubs they're chasing in the AL wild-card race.
KANSAS CITY, MO - AUGUST 25: Michael Pineda #35 of the New York Yankees throws in the first inning against the...(Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)
Regular Season Series
|3rd||D Jeter grounded out to shortstop, I Suzuki scored, J Ellsbury to second.||1||0|
|3rd||M Moustakas homered to right (407 feet).||1||1|
|4th||S Drew homered to right (379 feet).||2||1|
|7th||M Prado homered to left center (414 feet).||3||1|
|7th||J Ellsbury singled to right, I Suzuki scored, Z Wheeler to second, Z Wheeler to third advancing on throw.||4||1|
|7th||D Jeter singled to left center, Z Wheeler scored, J Ellsbury to third.||5||1|
|7th||B McCann hit sacrifice fly to right, J Ellsbury scored.||6||1|
|9th||J Ellsbury homered to right (369 feet), Z Wheeler scored.||8||1|
|View complete Play-By-Play|
|Stadium||Kauffman Stadium, Kansas City, MO|
|Attendance||31,758 (83.8% full) - % is based on regular season capacity|
|Weather||94 degrees, clear|
|Umpires||Home Plate - Lance Barrett, First Base - Dana DeMuth, Second Base - Ron Kulpa, Third Base - Ed Hickox|
The Royals (72-57) and Yankees (67-61) meet Monday in Kansas City (7 ET on ESPN). This is the first time the Royals enter play on the morning of Aug. 25th with a better record than the Yankees since 1991. Kansas City was 63-59 and New York was 56-65. Both teams would miss the playoffs that season.
The Yankees look almost identical to a year ago through 128 games; they had 1 more win through that mark last season. The batting average and ERA was almost a mirror image, and the Yanks are hoping that this season turns out differently... a year ago, they missed the playoffs after finishing 85-77.[+]
Yankees Through 128 Games
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