These aren't the Kansas City Royals from the past few seasons.
Once a moribund franchise out of playoff races by May, the Royals dominated the New York Yankees, 11-5, to take two of three games.
It was the first series the Yankees lost all season. New York, struggling as of late, dropped out of first place for the first time since April 13. The Yankees have lost six of their last nine games.
Unlike Wednesday night's 11-inning affair, the Royals jumped out to a big lead early. Eric Hosmer led off the second inning with a home run, his second in as many games, to give the Royals a 1-0 lead. Careless defensive mistakes helped set the up the big inning for Kansas City.
Robinson Cano's throwing error on a tailor-made double play ball allowed Wilson Betemit to take second and left Matt Treanor safe at first. A passed ball from Francisco Cervelli moved the runners up, and Mike Aviles extended the lead to 2-0 with an infield single.
Melky Cabrera followed with a RBI double, and caused a Cervelli throwing error on a pickoff attempt. That allowed Aviles to score, pushing the lead to 4-0.
Billy Butler and Jeff Francour finished the scoring, helping secure the most runs surrendered by the Yankees in a single inning this season.
Cabrera stretched the lead further in the fourth inning, leading off with a solo home run. Alex Gordon doubled right after the home run, and Billy Butler drove him in to push the lead to 8-0. That ended the night for Ivan Nova (3-3). In the shortest start of his career, he went only three innings, allowing eight runs (four earned) and 10 hits.
The Yankees mounted a rally in the fourth inning, cutting the Royals lead to four. Kansas City starter Sean O'Sullivan (2-2), who threw three perfect innings, allowed a lead-off home run to Cano. Cervelli hit a two-run double, and Derek Jeter hit a sacrifice fly to shrink the lead to 8-4.
O'Sullivan settled down after that inning, pitching into the seventh for his second win of the season.
The Royals pushed the game out of reach against rookie Amaury Sanit. The 31-year old Cuban, making his season debut, allowed three runs in 4 2/3 relief innings.
Alex Rodriguez broke a 65 at-bat home run drought, hitting his sixth of the season off Brandon Wood. That made the score 11-5, but the Yankees couldn't mount another rally.
|Final - 5.12.2011||1||2||3||4||5||6||7||8||9||R||H||E|
|Kansas City Royals||0||6||0||2||0||1||0||2||0||11||16||0|
|New York Yankees||0||0||0||0||4||0||0||1||0||5||8||2|
|WP: Sean O`Sullivan (2 - 2)
LP: Ivan Nova (3 - 3)