KANSAS CITY — The New York Yankees’ offense kept rolling through the bottom of the American League.
Derek Jeter had four hits, New York batted around in both the first and second innings and the Yankees extended their winning streak to five with a 9-4 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Tuesday night.
Chien-Ming Wang (11-5) won for the eighth time in nine decisions, backed by another stellar night from New York’s offense. The Yankees have scored 63 runs in a five-game span for the first time since July 26-29, 1931, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. New York put a runner on base in 24 consecutive innings before Joel Peralta pitched a perfect eighth.
New York (53-46), a season-best seven games over .500, has won 10 of 12 — against Tampa Bay, Toronto and Kansas City — and pulled within 4 1/2 games of Cleveland, the AL wild card leader. New York stayed 7 1/2 games back of AL East-leading Boston.
On the 24th anniversary of George Brett’s famous pine tar game at Yankee Stadium, the Royals handed out T-shirts bearing the name and No. 5 of Hall of Famer George Brett — and also bearing black, tar-like smears. Brett, now a Royals vice president, was on hand for the game.
It was the 34th anniversary of the 1973 All-Star game in Kansas City — Yankees manager Joe Torre and Kansas City manager Buddy Bell both played in that one, and Bobby Bonds — Barry’s father — was the MVP.
Alex Rodriguez and Melky Cabrera were held hitless in a game that took 4 hours, 1 minutes. Every starter in New York’s lineup had gotten hits in each of the previous three games, the first time the Yankees accomplished that feat in at least 50 years, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
Rodriguez also saw his string of errorless games end at 47 when he misplayed Reggie Sanders’ grounder in the sixth inning. It had been the longest active errorless streak by a third baseman in the majors.
Wang (11-5) gave up four runs and seven hits in six innings.
Scott Elarton (2-4), the second straight Royals’ starter to throw a BP-like outing, gave up seven runs and six hits in 1 2-3 innings, his ERA rising from an awful 9.17 to a putrid 10.46. He lost to the Yankees for the first time in four career decisions. Elarton, who missed 26 games with a sprained right foot, was activated from the disabled list for Tuesday’s start.
Bobby Abreu’s sacrifice fly, Jorge Posada’s two-run single and Robinson Cano’s RBI double built a 4-0 lead in the first,
Abreu hit an RBI double in the second and scored on a single by Hideki Matsui, who came around when John Bale walked Andy Phillips with the bases loaded. Bale walked his first three batters and Royals pitchers walked nine in all, two intentionally.
Alex Gordan hit an RBI double in the bottom half and scored on John Buck’s grounder.