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Posada hits pair of HRs, Unit dominates Royals in Yanks win

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- Randy Johnson will turn 43 before his
next start. The Big Unit threw 42 an impressive going-away party.

Johnson took a no-hit bid into the seventh inning and Jorge Posada backed him with a pair of three-run homers in the New York
Yankees' 8-3 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Wednesday.

"It's remarkable, it really is," Yankees manager Joe Torre
said. "For power pitchers to pitch into their 40s -- Roger
(Clemens) did it, Nolan (Ryan) did it, (Steve) Carlton tried to do
it -- it's certainly not something that comes down the pipe all the
time."

Johnson (16-10) didn't give up a hit until David DeJesus tripled
to deep left-center leading off the seventh inning. Center fielder
Johnny Damon slid to keep the ball from going by him, but came up
well short.

"I was trying to get there," Damon said. "I kind of stabbed
my glove, because I knew as soon as it hit the ground it was going
to take off. I was just hoping to stop it, but I saw the replay and
it was 10 to 12 feet."

Earlier Wednesday, Florida's Anibal Sanchez pitched a no-hitter
against Arizona, the first no-hitter in the major leagues since
Johnson's perfect game for Arizona at Atlanta on May 18, 2004.

"I was coming up here between innings when I saw it," Johnson
said. "Congratulations to him."

Johnson, 5-1 in his last six starts, allowed just the one hit
and struck out eight in seven shutout innings, walking two. He had
faced the minimum 18 batters before the triple -- he walked Emil Brown in the second, but Ryan Shealy grounded into an inning-ending
double play.

"I warmed up good, and the slider was probably my best pitch
tonight," Johnson said. "I was able to locate my fastball a
couple of pitches up and away, and then I had good defense. Jorgie
called a great game and then did everything by himself pretty much,
offensively."

After his triple, DeJesus was picked off third by Posada.

"I was just too aggressive when my run didn't matter at all,"
DeJesus said. "It was one of those things where it was a stupid
mistake by me. I take full blame for it."

At least DeJesus' hit kept Torre from having to decide whether
to conserve Johnson's arm or let him try for the first double
no-hit day in the majors since Oakland's Dave Stewart and the Los
Angeles Dodgers' Fernando Valenzuela on June 29, 1990. That feat
came 27 days after Johnson's first career no-hitter, for Seattle
against Detroit.

"I'm not sure he wants to pitch a no-hitter at this point in
time," Torre said with a laugh. "Whatever we can keep in the tank
is probably going to help us later on. But yeah, if he's pitching a
no-hitter -- I have to get back to New York, you know."

Johnson didn't mind coming out after seven.

"Probably the only reason I was out there was to see what would
have happened," he said. "At this point, to go deep, deep in the
game when we've got that kind of lead -- if the bullpen's rested,
it's not that important for me to get a complete game."

Johnson stood in the dugout at times between innings, rather
than sitting.

"My body's pretty sore right now," he said.

The Royals, on their way to another 100-loss season, were at
least spared the embarrassment of being half the answer to a trivia
question.

"Yeah, we were aware of it," designated hitter Mike Sweeney
said. "Obviously, we didn't want to be the receivers of a dubious
honor."

Derek Jeter extended his hitting streak to a career-high 17
games, going 2-for-4. He raised his batting average to .344, one
point behind Minnesota's Joe Mauer, the AL leader.

Runelvys Hernandez (5-9) allowed five runs and seven hits in six
innings.

Posada's first homer made it 5-0 in the sixth inning and his
second boosted the margin to 8-0 in the eighth against Jose Diaz,
who made his major league debut. It was the 13th multihomer game
for Posada, the first since April 9 against the Los Angeles Angels.

"He's been swinging the bat really well over the last three or
four days," Torre said. "He was struggling a little bit before
that but right now he's putting good swings on the ball."

Melky Cabrera's RBI single put the Yankees up 1-0 in the second
inning and Jeter made it 2-0 with an RBI double in the fifth.

John Buck hit an RBI single in the eighth off Scott Proctor, and
Esteban German hit a two-run homer against Kyle Farnsworth in the
ninth.

Game notes
Diaz was the 30th pitcher the Royals used this season, a
club record. ... Jeff Keppinger, recalled from Triple-A Omaha on
Aug. 25, started at third base in place of the injured Mark Teahen.
Teahen, the Royals' leader in home runs (18) and slugging
percentage (.519), will have season-ending surgery on Friday to fix
a torn labrum in his right shoulder. ... New York's Jason Giambi
broke an 0-for-21 hitless streak with a double to center in the
sixth inning. ... DeJesus made two nifty defensive plays in center,
both at the expense of Robinson Cano. DeJesus threw out Cano as he
tried to score on Cabrera's RBI single in the third, then made a
running grab at the warning track on Cano's long fly ball in the
sixth.