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Buck's 2-run homer caps Royals rally

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Seeing Ichiro Suzuki get hit in the head
with a pitch and knocked to the ground bothered the Seattle
Mariners much more than losing a meaningless game.

Suzuki, the majors' leading hitter, was struck in the right side
of his head by a pitch from rookie Jimmy Serrano in the third
inning of Kansas City's 3-2 victory Wednesday night.

The Royals' team doctor said Suzuki sustained a mild concussion
and may not play Thursday. While players and fans maintained a
stunned silence, he lay face-down in the batter's box several
minutes.

He finally walked off the field and did not return.

"I'm feeling dizzy. I'm not sure what the correct term is going
to be, but I'm just feeling a little dizzy right now," Suzuki said
through his interpreter. "I don't know if I'm going to be able to
go tomorrow. I'm going to have to think about that tonight. That's
why I'm not happy."

The pitch hit him toward the back of the right side of his
batting helmet with an impact heard in the upper deck.

"It was an awful sound," Seattle manager Bob Melvin said.
"I've heard guys get hit in the helmet before, but that was not a
good sound."

When asked if he might be afraid of getting hit the next time he
steps into the batter's box, Suzuki grinned.

"I'm not going to be scared," he said. "If you got up there,
maybe you would be scared. But I'm not going to be scared."

Serrano was making his third major league start.

"The pitch got away," Serrano said. "It's in the back of my
mind the whole game. It's not something I want to play over and
over in my mind. it's a pretty scary thing."

John Buck hit a go-ahead two-run homer in the eighth inning to
boost the Royals to their first win in six home games.

Suzuki, batting .366 and with a major league-leading 189 hits,
did not lost consciousness but was woozy and disoriented, Melvin
said.

"I know he's certainly not trying to hit him, but it's missing
by a pretty wide margin," Melvin said.

With the Royals trailing 2-1 in the eighth, Desi Relaford hit a
one-out single to right, and Buck sent Ryan Franklin's first pitch
over the left-field wall for his fifth homer.

D.J. Carrasco (2-1) pitched two perfect innings in relief of
Serrano for the win.

Franklin (3-12) retired 15 straight in one stretch, but lost his
seventh straight decision. He allowed three runs and five hits in
eight innings.

Jolbert Cabrera's two-run homer had given Seattle a 2-1 lead in
the seventh as the Mariners sought back-to-back road wins for the
first time since mid-June.

Serrano had allowed just two hits until Bucky Jacobsen singled
with one out in the seventh. Cabrera then hit a 1-0 pitch into left
field which came down on top of the bullpen fence and bounced over
for his fourth homer.

Serrano went seven innings and gave up just two runs on five
hits, with three walks and two strikeouts. The right-hander also
benefited from several standout defensive plays by rookie
infielders Andrew Blanco and Ruben Gotay.

Game notes
The Mariners haven't won consecutive road games since
sweeping Pittsburgh June 18-20. ... Royals C Mike Tonis, who is
playing for Greece in the Olympics, cleared waivers Wednesday and
was outrighted to Double-A Wichita. ... With the addition of
right-hander Matt Kinney, the Royals have tied their team record
with 53 players used. ... Seattle has won six of its last seven
season series against the Royals. ... Kansas City first baseman
Mike Sweeney is day to day with stiffness in his lower back. ...
When Suzuki made an out in his first at-bat, he missed a chance to
be just the second man to hit leadoff homers in three straight
games.