Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Bad-News Bombers

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Bad-News Bombers

Article excerpt

NEW YORK - Royals starter James Shields was on the ropes early Tuesday night, yet it felt as if the Yankees merely were winning the first round of a pillow fight.

It took four first-inning Yankees singles to produce just one run.

That big, game-breaking extra-base hit never arrived for the Yankees, who wasted a complete-game effort from CC Sabathia in a fast-moving 3-1 loss before 35,797 restless fans at the Stadium.

Sabathia (9-7) was burned by solo homers from No. 9 hitter David Lough in the sixth inning and cleanup man Billy Butler in the seventh.

Consecutive eighth-inning doubles by Kansas City's Alcides Escobar and Eric Hosmer provided an insurance run that felt so much larger, considering the Yanks' current offensive plight. Thirty- five of the Yankees' last 38 hits have been singles.

The helpless drought is another reason captain Derek Jeter is pining to return by the weekend, if not earlier.

In seven innings, Shields (4-6) gave up just one run on five hits - all singles - with two walks. But four of the first five Yankees reached base against him, starting with Brett Gardner's leadoff bunt to break a personal 0-for-16 streak.

Ichiro Suzuki and Robinson Cano (RBI) followed with hits, but Travis Hafner (0-for-3, 3 K's) struck out. Zoilo Almonte singled to load the bases, but Lyle Overbay (strikeout) and Eduardo Nunez (deep fly-out) couldn't cash in.

Sabathia yielded three runs on seven hits with two walks and six strikeouts.

While the Yankees (48-42) wait for the likes of Jeter (ankle), Alex Rodriguez (hip) and Curtis Granderson (hand) to come off the disabled list and slot into their run-starved lineup, Ty Wigginton looms as a possible acquisition.

The right-handed hitting Wigginton reportedly has been granted his unconditional release by the Cardinals and he might be a fit for the fix-it-on-the-fly Yankees.

A utilityman with some pop, Wigginton primarily plays the corner infield spots and can handle the corner outfield positions if necessary. But Wigginton, 35, had a brutal half-season in St. …

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