Bronx, NY – Alex Rodriguez homered twice and drove in three runs as the New York Yankees dispatched Kansas City, 8-3, in the rubber match of a three-game series at Yankee Stadium.
Derek Jeter added three hits and Curtis Granderson homered with two runs scored for the Yankees, who took the final two games of the set after dropping six of seven.
Andy Pettitte (2-1) worked seven-plus innings, allowing seven hits and two runs while fanning eight.
"I'm trying to keep in as simple as I possibly can," Pettitte said of his approach on the mound. "I wanna go out there, try and shut down the other team, let my guys get on the board first, set a tempo early, throw strikes. That's the game plan."
Billy Butler and Mitch Maier homered for the Royals, who have lost six of eight. In his major-league debut, Will Smith (0-1) was charged with six hits and five runs over 3 1/3 frames.
"The long ball certainly hurt him tonight," said Royals manager Ned Yost. "Some pitches got too much of the plate, but you know it's a tough thing to come in here for your first start against this ball club."
Maier cleared the wall in left center to make it 5-2 in the fifth, but the hosts came up with three more in the home half to essentially wrap up the game.
Jayson Nix was hit by a Luis Mendoza pitch to start, then after a Mike Moustakas error on a Jeter sacrifice, two runners moved into scoring position. Granderson and Mark Teixeira walked in succession to force in New York's sixth run, then after Rodriguez grounded into a force at home, Jose Mijares came on but allowed an RBI fielder's choice to Robinson Cano and a bases-loaded walk to Andruw Jones for an 8-2 game.
Eric Hosmer's bloop double plated Alcides Escobar in the ninth, but David Phelps retired Humberto Quintero and Maier to end the game.
Granderson launched a solo shot to right center with one down in the first, and after a Teixiera walk, Rodriguez hit the seats in left to make it 3-0.
"When you're in the middle of the order, your team expects you to come up with big hits," noted Rodriguez. "I was tired of making the news for hitting a fly ball and stealing a base. I had to go back to what my bread-and-butter is."
In the third, the Yanks picked up two more, thanks to a double-play groundout from Teixeira and solo homer from Rodriguez.
KC got one back in the fourth on a Butler shot to right, but failed to dent Pettitte further despite loading the bases with two outs.
Pettitte posted his first win over Kansas City since April 10, 2009...Jeter tied Paul Waner for 15th on all-time list with a single in the eighth, now at 3,152 career hits...Rodriguez posted his first multi-homer contest since May 17, 2011 at Tampa...Both clubs hit the diamond again on Friday, as the Yankees begin a nine-game road trip in Oakland and the Royals continue their nine-game sojourn in Baltimore.