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Palmer Shows Up Old Teammates

<i> From Associated Press</i>

Dean Palmer stole a little thunder from his more famous former teammate.

But that wasn’t what the Kansas City Royal third baseman was thinking about after his three-run homer helped the Royals wipe out an earlier three-run shot by Juan Gonzalez in the Royals’ 7-4 victory Wednesday night.

“We just wanted to get a win,” Palmer said. “I was kind of surprised that [Ranger starter Aaron] Sele threw a ball that straight. It kind of stayed up there and I didn’t even get that good of a swing.

“I hit it off the end of my bat.”

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But the three-run homer helped the Royals put a 15-5 rout by Texas on Tuesday night behind them.

“We needed this win,” said Kansas City starter Pat Rapp, who gave up Gonzalez’s homer. “I didn’t want to walk anyone tonight, but maybe I should have taken a walk there. He crushed it.”

After the homer, Rapp retired the next 13 batters before being ejected by first-base umpire Eric Cooper for arguing.

Rapp took a throw from first baseman Jeff King and thought he beat Tom Goodwin to the bag.

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“I just disagreed with the call,” Rapp (9-9) said. “I didn’t know he had such a short fuse. I was walking away and he came after me. I was talking, but I didn’t say anything about his mother or anything like that. I hated to put the bullpen in that situation, but the guys really came through.”

Ricky Bones pitched one scoreless inning, Scott Service gave up one run in two innings and Jeff Montgomery pitched a scoreless ninth to pick up his 23rd save.

Gonzalez’s 30th homer landed in the water fountain in left field and increased his major league-leading RBI total to 113.

Gonzalez has four homers and 10 RBIs in his last three games after going nine games without an RBI. He is chasing Hack Wilson’s record of 190 RBIs.

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“Juan is having an incredible season,” Texas Manager Johnny Oates said. “Nothing he does surprises me.”

With the score tied, 3-3, in the fifth, Jose Offerman walked and Hal Morris singled with one out before Palmer, a former Ranger, connected for his 20th homer.

Palmer played with Texas from 1991-97 before being traded to the Rangers for Goodwin.

Sele (12-7) gave up six runs and nine hits in 6 1/3 innings.

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