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Royals Fire Muser After Win at Detroit

April 30, 2002|From Associated Press

Tony Muser became the fourth manager fired during this season when the Kansas City Royals dismissed him Monday night following another slow start.

The Royals (8-15) haven't had a winning record since the strike-shortened 1994 season. Muser went 317-431 (.424) since taking over the team in the middle of 1997.

"These things happen," Muser said. "I'm not ashamed. I did the best I could possibly do."

Muser was told of the firing by General Manager Allard Baird in a "very, very emotional" conversation after the team beat the Tigers, 4-0, at Detroit behind Jeff Suppan's two-hitter. Muser was in the final year of his contract.

Three other managers have been fired during the season: Phil Garner by Detroit on April 9, Davey Lopes by Milwaukee on April 18 and Buddy Bell by Colorado April 26.

Boston fired Joe Kerrigan during spring training.

The Royals held a meeting before Monday's game and Muser managed the team before being ejected in the third inning.

Throughout Muser's tenure, the Royals had among the lowest payrolls in baseball and struggled with poor pitching. The Royals began the season with a $47.3-million payroll, eighth-lowest in baseball.

The Royals, who have traded many of their best players in recent years, are second-to-last in the AL with a 5.58 earned-run average and 12th in runs with 104.

On Monday, the Royals ended a scoreless tie on Jeff Weaver's wild pitch in the eighth inning.

Suppan (2-3) walked one and struck out three for his third career shutout.

Baltimore 5, Boston 3--Rodrigo Lopez shut down the Red Sox for five innings, and Geronimo Gil and Melvin Mora homered to lead the Orioles at Boston.

It was the Baltimore's eighth victory in 10 games.

Lopez (3-0) gave up only one hit through five innings. A former reliever, Lopez ran into trouble in the sixth when Boston scored two runs on three hits and a walk. He went 52/3 innings, giving up two runs, four hits and two walks, and struck out one.

Jorge Julio pitched the ninth for his fourth save.

Minnesota 3, Tampa Bay 2--Eric Milton rebounded from a rough start with 71/3 strong innings and Denny Hocking hit two sacrifice flies for the Twins at Minneapolis.

Tampa Bay, which had won 12 of its last 15 against Minnesota before Monday, lost its fourth in a row.

Milton (4-2) gave up six hits, a walk and two runs, and struck out three. He gave up eight runs in 41/3 innings in a 9-1 loss to the Devil Rays last week.

Eddie Guardado pitched a perfect ninth for his ninth save in nine chances.

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