• Yankees 9, Royals 2: After scoring 38 runs in two games, nine runs in one game doesn't seem like much. What's wrong with these bums? Only eight of nine starters scored a run. Even though all nine starters had hits, six of them managed just one. That kind of weak production just isn't going to get it done. Roger Clemens threw seven innings of two-run ball. He didn't walk a batter and struck out three, but the Yankees' five-run ninth made things a little less dramatic. When Ron Villone pitches the ninth inning, things are going really well or really poorly.

    With Cleveland playing Boston, the teams ahead of the Yankees will beat up on each other. As long as the Yankees win, they'll gain ground on someone. They trail the Indians by 5 1/2 games in the wild-card race after the Red Sox took the first game of the series. Wanting to win the division is fine, but the wild card carries no shame. Think the Red Sox feel guilty about winning the pennant after finishing second in 2004? If the Yankees are lucky enough to get into the dance, they'll take their ticket any way it comes.