PHOENIX (AP) -- Emil Brown helped make J.P. Howell's first game
in the big leagues one to remember.
Brown had three doubles among his career-high four hits for
Kansas City and Howell won his major league debut to help the
Royals to an 8-5 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Saturday
"I guess it's pretty good," Brown said. "I don't think about
it as being a huge thing, because we've still got a bunch of games.
I'd like to get four hits again."
Howell (1-0) was impressive, allowing one run on four hits and
two walks in five innings. His eight strikeouts tied the franchise
club record for a first big league appearance, set by Paul
Splittorff on Sept. 23, 1970.
"I was fidgety," the 22-year-old left-hander said. "You just
try not to think. I tried to take a nap. That wasn't working. So I
pretty much was just trying to relax and act like it's a normal
game, like I'm pitching in college and the minor leagues."
The Royals had 18 hits -- 14 off Brad Halsey (4-4) in the worst
start of his career -- to snap a two-game skid and improve to 3-2 on
their road trip. John Buck had a two-run homer among his three
Brown scored on all of Long's RBI, drove in two and made a
face-in-the-grass dive to catch Troy Glaus' sinking liner in right
field to end the seventh inning.
"I was really concerned about the energy in tonight's game, and
we played well," Royals manager Buddy Bell said. "Brownie played
great, offensively and defensively."
Arizona announced it was finishing the game under protest in the
eighth inning, when Royals third baseman Mark Teahen turned a catch
into a double play after falling on his fielding arm and dropping
the ball. Teahen picked up the ball, tagged third then threw to
second for the double play.
Diamondbacks manager Bob Melvin argued that his runners were
frozen because third-base umpire Greg Gibson signaled an out before
the ball came loose, then made a safe motion.
"Once he throws his hand up, it freezes my runners, so that's
what the protest is for," said Melvin, who acknowledged that
Gibson's call was ultimately correct.
Howell left with a 4-0 lead after allowing singles to Glaus and
Clark leading off the sixth. Andrew Sisco came on and got Green to
hit into a double play while Glaus advanced to third. Then Jose
Cruz Jr. hit a run-scoring single.
The Royals responded with three runs in the seventh -- two
charged to Halsey after allowing a single to Brown and an RBI
single to Long.
Halsey allowed 14 hits and six runs in six-plus innings.
The starting pitchers both went to the University of Texas
and briefly roomed together. Howell helped the Longhorns to the
2004 College World Series final, and was 7-2 with their 2002
championship team. ... Glaus caught three liners in the first four
innings, ending the second with a double play when he held onto a
smash by Graffanino and threw to first to double up DeJesus. ...
The Royals are 7-4 under manager Buddy Bell. ... Clark's homer, his
ninth, was his career 200th. ... The Diamondbacks had had
back-to-back homers three times this season, last on June 4 (Alex
Cintron and Gonzalez) in Philadelphia.