Ichiro Suzuki doesn’t have an explanation for his struggles in Kansas City.
Suzuki will look to end a long run of futility at Kauffman Stadium when his Seattle Mariners try for a three-game sweep of the Royals.
Suzuki is batting .240 (18-for-75) at Kauffman, his lowest average in any major league park. The Japanese right fielder went 0-for-4 on Wednesday, ending a 19-game hitting streak dating to last season, but the Mariners won 2-1 and are one win away from their first sweep in Kansas City since Sept. 6-8, 2002.
Seattle has won 14 of 19 games at Kauffman since Suzuki’s arrival in 2001, the year he captured AL Rookie of the Year and league MVP honors.
“But there has to be a stadium where you have the least amount of hits and you have a stadium where you have the most hits,” said Suzuki, who set a major league record with 262 hits last year. “I think that’s what it is. If you could hit the same in every park, that would be weird.”
Wednesday’s victory gave Mike Hargrove his 1,000th win as a major league manager. Hargrove, who won five division titles and two AL championships with Cleveland from 1991-99, is 1,000-968 in 14 seasons and is the 51st major league manager to reach the milestone.
“You realize the great managers that are on that list, and to be among them is a unique honor,” Hargrove said. “It says a lot about the players you’ve had play for you over the years. I think it’s about the fact that I’ve done this a long time.”
Mike Sweeney went 1-for-4 Wednesday, extending his hitting streak to seven games. He is batting .353 (12-for-34) with a team-high seven RBIs.
The Royals lost for the third time in four games despite six scoreless innings from Zack Greinke.
“Zack gave us the opportunity to win the game but, unfortunately, our offense didn’t come through and score any runs for him,” Royals outfielder Matt Stairs said. “You come back and try to get (Seattle) Jamie Moyer tomorrow.”
Moyer, a 42-year-old left-hander, is 11-8 with a 3.60 ERA in 28 career appearances, including 25 starts, against the Royals.