Royal Pain

A blown call by the third-base umpire in the first inning was just the beginning of the end for Jeff Weaver and the Yankees. The Royals took advantage of almost every single opportunity that came their way and won Wednesday's game – and the three-game series – by a final score of 11-0.

Weaver found himself in trouble immediately in the bottom of the first inning. Aaron Guiel and Angel Berroa led off the frame with a pair of soft singles that put runners on the corners with nobody out.

The Yankee starter – who has been a victim of terrible luck throughout the season – worked a full count of Raul Ibanez before getting Ibanez to check swing on the next pitch. With Berroa running on the pitch, the third base umpire didn't immediately respond to Weaver and Posada's appeal on the swing. After a few moments, Laz Diaz called Ibanez safe – through replays showed he clearly went around – and the bases were loaded for Mike Sweeney.

Sweeney laced a single to left-center field that score two runs, and the Royals didn't look back.

After Dee Brown's sacrifice fly scored Ibanez to give KC a 3-0 lead, Weaver appeared to settle down. He allowed another run in the fourth on an infield single, but ran into serious trouble in the sixth when Brent Mayne's double scored two more runs to give the Royals a 6-0 lead.

Meanwhile on the other side of the hill, Kevin Appier (8-8) was throwing a gem against the same Yankee offense that had facilitated his exit from Anaheim. Appier pitched six brilliant innings, allowing just three runs and a walk while striking out two batters. He left the game with an injury after warming up before the seventh, but he pitched long enough to get his first win as a Royal since joining them on August 8.

Weaver remained in the game to take one for the team in the seventh inning, but couldn't stay out of trouble. He allowed a run scoring single to Guiel that forced him from the game.

Bret Prinz relieved and allowed two more runners to score on another Sweeney single – both charged to Weaver. Prinz also allowed a two-run homerun to Mendy Lopez in the eighth to put KC up 11-0.

Weaver (7-8) lasted 6 1/3 innings and allowed a total of nine runs on 13 hits and a pair of walks. It was his first loss since July 21 against the Blue Jays.

Jeremy Affeldt pitched two scoreless innngs in relief, allowing just a hit and a walk while striking out three. Curtis Leskanic pitched the ninth to seal the deal for Kansas City.

The Yankees finish up their road trip with a four-game series in Baltimore over the weekend. Game one is on Thursday at 7:05 pm. Andy Pettitte (13-7, 4.10) will take the mound for the Yankees, looking to rebound the team from their worst loss of the season. Damian Moss (9-8, 4.48) will get the start for the Orioles.

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