<
>

May gets through six innings for win

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Darrell May figured he was lucky to
avoid becoming the majors first nine-game loser.

Kansas City's slumping left-hander gave up 11 hits, including
six of the New York Mets eight doubles, in six innings but still
emerged a 7-5 winner on Friday night.

"It's pretty unbelievable to give up eight doubles in a game
and still come out with a win," May said.

Gerald Williams doubled on May's first pitch of the game, and
the Mets went on to tie the Royals' record for doubles by an
opponent.

"He hit a double and it seemed like it never stopped," May
said. "Whatever I was throwing, they'd put a runner on second.
Maybe I should just go out there every inning with the mentality,
that somebody is already on second base."

Matt Stairs doubled and tripled for the Royals.

The struggling Mets lost their fourth straight, despite tying a
season high with 17 hits.

The Mets, who left the bases loaded in the 11th inning the night
before in a 15-inning loss to Minnesota, also left them loaded in
the ninth against closer Jeremy Affeldt. They finished with 13
runners stranded.

Mets manager Art Howe took an optimistic approach New York's
night at the plate.

"Offensively, I felt a lot better about the way we swung the
bats," he said. "We left some runners on, obviously. But it was
an improvement."

May (3-8) allowed five runs, with five strikeouts. Affeldt got
the final four outs for his eighth straight save after blowing his
first opportunity of the season.

"It's almost like we didn't decide to bear down until they had
runners in scoring position," May said.

Doubles by Williams and Cliff Floyd put New York on top 1-0 in
the first, then the Royals scored three off Jae Seo (3-5) in the
third. Mike Sweeney had an RBI double and Ken Harvey hit a two-run
home run on a 3-1 pitch.

"Believe it or not, he was supposed to be pitching around
him," Howe said. "His command just wasn't there. That ball came
right back over the middle of the plate."

Williams and Floyd had three hits apiece for the Mets, who
loaded the bases with three singles in the ninth before Affeldt got
Karim Garcia on a bouncer to first for the final out.

Two runners were left on base when Carlos Beltran made a
spectacular catch in deep left-center on Floyd's sinking liner with
two out in the eighth.

"Nice play in center field," Howe said. "That was a big play
for them."

During the game, Royals' general manager Allard Baird disclosed
he had contacted major league clubs to tell them he was now willing
to listen to offers for any of his players -- including Beltran.

"Right now I just have to think about Carlos is still part of
this organization. It's disappointing, sure," Royals manager Tony
Pena said. "But when things have to be done, they have to be
done."

Byron Gettis' sacrifice fly gave him his first major league RBI
and put the Royals on top 4-2 in the fourth. In the fifth, Stairs
hit an RBI triple and Jose Santiago hit a two-run double off
reliever Dan Wheeler for a 7-2 lead.

Seo gave up eight hits and six runs in 4 2-3 innings, walking
one and striking out two.

After Joe McEwing's RBI single in the sixth, the Mets made it
7-5 in the seventh on Ty Wiggington's two-run double off Scott
Sullivan.

Game notes
The eight doubles tied the record against the Royals, which
had been done three times. The Mets had nine doubles May 21 against
Colorado ... Stairs' triple was his first since Sept. 28, 2003 and
only his second since 2000. ...Seattle RHP Joel Pineiro (1-8) is
the other eight-game loser.