Jeter’s jolt sends Royals reeling

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NEW YORK – The other stars come and go from the New York Yankees’ clubhouse. Derek Jeter remains.

Jeter’s three-run homer capped a five-run rally in the eighth inning and the Yankees beat the Kansas City Royals 9-7 Tuesday to win their club-record ninth straight home opener.

New York wasted a 4-1 fourth-inning lead and trailed 7-4 in the eighth, when it loaded the bases against Andrew Sisco on a single wrapped around two walks.

Robinson Cano hit an RBI groundout and Bernie Williams punched a run-scoring single to left.That brought up Johnny Damon, playing his first game in pinstripes.

Ambiorix Burgos relieved and struck him out, but Jeter sent the next pitch soaring into the left-field seats.

Twins 7, Athletics 6

MINNEAPOLIS – The Minnesota Twins must have left their good bats at home.

Tony Batista woke up the offense with a three-run homer, and the Twins started the season’s second week in better fashion than the first by beating the Oakland Athletics 7-6 in their home opener.

Eric Chavez hit a two-run shot, his second homer of the game and fifth of the year, in the eighth inning against Jesse Crain to pull Oakland within one.

Joe Nathan pitched a hitless ninth for his first save.

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Orioles 8, Devil Rays 4

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. – Kris Benson took a four-hitter into the eighth inning for his first win with the Baltimore Orioles and Melvin Mora homered in an 8-4 victory over the Tampa Bay Devil Rays.

Benson (1-1) gave up two runs and five hits in seven-plus innings.

Indians 9, Mariners 5

CLEVELAND – Jhonny Peralta and Travis Hafner hit consecutive homers in the fifth inning to back Cliff Lee and the Cleveland Indians won their sixth straight, 9-5 over the Seattle Mariners.

At 6-1, the Indians are off to their best start since opening 11-1 in 2002. It’s also the first time they’ve been in first place in the AL Central since April 18, 2002, a season they finished 74-88.

National League

Reds 9, Cubs 2

CHICAGO – Bronson Arroyo had no homers in his first six major league seasons. Now the long-legged Cincinnati pitcher has two in one week.

Arroyo pitched seven shutout innings and hit one of Cincinnati’s six homers, Edwin Encarnacion connected for a grand slam and the Reds routed the Cubs 9-2.

Padres 9, Marlins 3

MIAMI – Khalil Greene drove in four runs with two homers to help San Diego shake a slump, and the Padres spoiled the Florida Marlins’ home opener by winning 9-3.

The Padres, who scored a major league-low 19 runs in the first week of the season, snapped a four-game losing streak.

Mets 7, Nationals 1

WASHINGTON – No beanballs, brawls or even brushbacks Tuesday between the Nationals and Mets. In fact, Washington’s home opener was much more low key in every way than last season.

Rookie Brian Bannister shut down Washington again for his first major league victory and Carlos Beltran homered off the facing of the upper deck, leading the Mets past the Nationals 7-1.

Pirates 7, Dodgers 6

PITTSBURGH – Ryan Doumit hit one of Pittsburgh’s four homers, drove in the go-ahead run with a sacrifice fly in the sixth inning and the Pirates, despite falling behind by multiple runs much as they have done all season, rallied for a 7-6 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Jeromy Burnitz added a two-run homer for the Pirates.

, and Craig Wilson and Doumit each hit a solo shot as the Pirates came back from deficits of 3-0, 5-2 and 6-3 to avoid the franchise’s first 1-8 start in 51 years.


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