KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- If the first 999 had been this
harrowing, Mike Hargrove might never have made it to 1,000.
"I'd be dead," said the Seattle manager.
With two out and runners at first and second, a shaky Eddie
Guardado struck out Angel Berroa on a 3-2 pitch Wednesday,
preserving a 2-1 victory over Kansas City and giving Hargrove his
1,000th win as a major league manager.
"You realize the great managers that are on that list, and to
be among them is a unique honor," Hargrove said. "It says a lot
about the players you've had play for you over the years. I think
it's about the fact that I've done this a long time."
Hargrove, who won five division titles and two AL championships
with Cleveland, got splashed with champagne as he came into the
clubhouse. The milestone wins made him 1,000-968 in 14 seasons and
the 51st major league manager to reach the milestone.
"I'm about 50 pounds heavier than I was when I started," he
said with a smile.
"There are some things that I've learned in handling players.
There are things that I believed to be true about the game when I
first started managing that I've found to still be true. I tried
then and I try now to make it all about the players. They're the
ones who are doing it. Someone's got to drive the bus."
Ichiro Suzuki, who set the major league season record last year
with 262 hits, was 0-for-4 and failed to hit safely for the first
time in 20 games, ending a streak that began Sept. 20 against
Oakland. He reached in his first at-bat on a throwing error by
third baseman Tony Graffanino.
Suzuki's .240 career average in Kansas City is his lowest in any
major league park. He said through an interpreter that he doesn't
know why Kauffman Stadium seems to present him problems.
"But there has to be a stadium where you have the least amount
of hits and you have a stadium where you have the most hits," he
said through a translator. "I think that's what it is. If you
could hit the same in every park, that would be weird."
Sele (1-0) allowed one run, struck out three and walked two.
Guardado, who had given up two ninth-inning home runs and blown a
save in his previous appearance, allowed a hit and a walk before
striking out Berroa.
Ruben Gotay led off the ninth with a single, but was erased on
Mike Sweeney's forceout. Pinch-hitter Eli Marrero struck out,
pinch-hitter Emil Brown walked and Guardado fanned Berroa for his
Greinke, who'd been hit on the arm and knocked out of the game
in the third inning of his previous start, was on a strict limit of
85-90 pitches. He gave up four hits in six shutout innings, but
Seattle took a 2-0 lead in the seventh against Jaime Cerda (0-1).
Bret Boone singled leading off and scored on Mike MacDougal's wild
pitch, and Miguel Olivo's RBI single made it 2-0.
He said he had no problem with the pitch count.
"It made perfect sense to me. I felt good, but the pitch count
made more sense than feeling good," he said. "It wasn't just
pitching. It was also making sure your arm bounces back after every
Seattle bullpen coach Jim Slaton reported for work
Wednesday despite feeling ill. Hargrove said he had a temperature
of 102. ... The Royals placed rookie 3B Mark Teahen on the 15-day
DL Wednesday with a lower back strain. They purchased the contract
of infielder Joe McEwing. ... Greinke has not allowed an unearned
run in his major league career, spanning 153 1/3 innings. ...
Royals catcher John Buck picked Wilson Valdez off second in the
second inning and threw out Valdez trying to steal second in the