<
>

Royals end four-game skid

5/3/2004

TORONTO (AP) -- Aaron Guiel made sure Jimmy Gobble's outstanding
outing didn't go to waste.

Guiel homered in the 10th inning and the Kansas City Royals beat
the Toronto Blue Jays 3-2 Monday night after blowing a two-run lead
in the ninth.

Gobble retired his first 16 batters and came within one out of a
shutout for the Royals, who snapped a four-game losing streak and
improved to 2-10 on the road.

"Jimmy gave us a great performance," Guiel said. "If we had
lost that game it would have been the offense's fault."

Gobble gave up a two-out double to Carlos Delgado in the ninth
and an RBI single to Josh Phelps, cutting it to 2-1.

Mike MacDougal then came in and blew the lead.

He gave up a single to Eric Hinske and walked pinch-hitter Frank
Catalanotto, loading the bases. MacDougal then walked Orlando
Hudson, tying it at 2.

But Nate Field (1-0) got out of the inning, and Guiel hit a 3-2
pitch from Terry Adams (2-1) over the right-center fence with one
out in the 10th.

Field stayed on and got the first out in the bottom half.

Jaime Cerda, recalled from the minors earlier in the day, got
Delgado to ground into a game-ending double play with two runners
on for his first career save.

"The way things have been going, nothing is easy," Kansas City
manager Tony Pena said.

Carlos Beltran and Ken Harvey each hit an RBI single for the
Royals. Gobble allowed five hits, struck out one and walked none.

"I've never even been in the ninth inning before," the
left-hander said. "It didn't work out but we got the win and
that's all that matters."

The Blue Jays lost for the sixth time in seven games and dropped
to 1-9 at home. They are 1-7 against left-handed starters.

"You'd like to be rewarded for your hard work, but no one here
is giving up," manager Carlos Tosca said.

Gobble didn't allow a baserunner until Hudson reached on third
baseman Joe Randa's throwing error with one out in the sixth.

Dave Berg followed with a single to left on the next pitch, but
Reed Johnson lined out to Randa and Chris Gomez grounded out to end
the threat.

The Blue Jays threatened again in the eighth when Hinske and
Kevin Cash hit consecutive singles before Hudson advanced them with
a sacrifice bunt.

But Berg flied out to shallow right field for the second out,
and Johnson hit a popup in foul territory. The ball popped out of
first baseman Harvey's glove, but he managed to catch it with his
mitt after it hit off his bare hand.

After Randa led off the fourth with a double off Toronto starter
Justin Miller, Mike Sweeney singled before Harvey hit an RBI
infield single.

Toronto reliever Valerio De Los Santos walked Guiel and Randa in
the eighth before Beltran hit an RBI single, giving Kansas City a
2-0 lead.

Miller allowed one run and four hits in six innings.

Game notes
Cal Ripken threw out the ceremonial first pitch. Asked
about steroids in baseball, Ripken said: "The game is in jeopardy
of being perceived as not fair or real." Ripken is also concerned
that children are not playing baseball anymore. "It's kind of sad
to me that soccer fields have replaced baseball fields," he said.
Ripken's on a 10-city tour to promote an instructional book
co-written with his brother, Billy. ... Attendance was just 13,007.
... Bret Saberhagen retired a Royals-record 21 straight batters on
June 21, 1985, against Seattle. ... Jamey Wright pitched Kansas
City's last shutout at Detroit on Sept. 13, 2003.