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Crawford's two-run shot helps Rays extend rule over K.C.

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) -- Carl Crawford hurt himself and then
the Kansas City Royals.
Crawford had a tiebreaking two-run triple to lead the Tampa Bay Devil Rays to a 9-5 win over the Royals on Sunday.

"That's the most painful triple I ever had to earn," said
Crawford, who had earlier fouled a ball off his toe. "It still
hurts."

Crawford has 50 triples in 535 career games. It was his first
this season.

"It's one of the funnest plays in all of sports, watching C.C.
hit a triple," Devil Rays manager Joe Maddon said. "He's one of
the strongest runners I've ever watched. He runs hard and he runs
fast. He's intense."

Jonny Gomes, Damon Hollins and Ty Wigginton homered for Tampa
Bay, which has won seven consecutive games against the Royals
dating to last season. The Devil Rays, at 7-6, are off to the
second-best start in franchise history.

The Devil Rays scored three runs in the sixth to take the lead.
Tomas Perez had an RBI single before Crawford drove in two with a
triple off Steve Stemle (0-1) to make it 6-4. Wigginton hit a
two-run drive in the seventh to extend the Tampa Bay lead to four.

Kansas City loaded the bases with one out against Scott Dunn in
the eighth. Shawn Camp relieved and got David DeJesus to ground
into an inning-ending double play.

"I don't know what to say," Royals manager Buddy Bell said.
"We didn't swing the bats."

Mark Teahen tripled and scored on Angel Berroa's two-out single
off reliever Brian Meadows (1-0) to give Kansas City a 4-3 lead in
the sixth. The Royals have lost seven in a row.

Gomes' two-run drive off Mark Redman in the first gave the Devil
Rays an early lead but Shane Costa responded with a two-run homer
in the second to tie it at 2.

Redman was reinstated from the 15-day disabled list before the
game after being sidelined by a left knee injury. He went five
innings, allowing three runs and seven hits.

"I had to make some adjustments and find out what was
working," Redman said. "I was really satisfied with myself
physically."

Hollins hit a solo homer in the second to put Tampa Bay up 3-2.
Kansas City drew even again on Paul Bako's RBI single in the
fourth.

Tampa Bay rookie Jason Hammel made his second career start
filling in for the injured Mark Hendrickson, who is on the 15-day
disabled list with left shoulder tightness. He gave up three runs
and four hits in five innings.

Hammel was optioned to Triple-A Durham after the game. Tampa Bay
will add a player to the roster on Monday.

"The first one we got some things done and I improved in the
second one today," Hammel said. "We're just going to keep working
on that and show that I can compete."

Hendrickson will not be ready to pitch in an extended spring
training game Monday as originally planned and will long toss
instead. Tampa Bay had hoped that the left-hander would rejoin the
rotation next Saturday.

"That spot is open," Maddon said.

Game notes
Tampa Bay SS Julio Lugo (abdominal strain) could play in
extended spring training games later this week. He hopes to rejoin
the team during a three-game series at the New York Yankees that
starts April 25. ... Kansas City has walked 40 batters -- including
five Sunday -- in the past six games. ... The Royals placed RHP
starter Denny Bautista on the 15-day disabled list with a sore
right pectoral muscle. LHP Jeremy Affeldt will replace Bautista in
Tuesday's game at the Chicago White Sox. ... The Devil Rays have
hit 19 homers in 13 games. ... The Devil Rays have outscored the
Royals 51-23 in their last seven meetings.