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No(va) chance: Yankees dismantled by Royals

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Today is Yogi Berra's birthday, which means I should begin this recap with a classic Yogi-ism that allows us to celebrate one of the most iconic Yankees of all-time.

I won't be doing that, however. This isn't meant to be insult to the Hall of Famer -- actually, it's quite the opposite. Lawrence Peter Berra is too good a man to be associated with a game this vile.

The Yankees were pounded, 11-5, by the Royals, losing for the ninth time in the last 14 games. The loss drops New York a game behind the Rays in the AL East.

While Wednesday's loss could be pinned on an offense that couldn't produce when it mattered, Thursday's defeat can be rested squarely at the feet of Ivan Nova. The right-hander allowed eight runs (four earned) in three-plus innings, undoing the promise of three straight quality starts.

The boobirds rained down on the 24-year-old as Kansas City took him apart, a proper Bronx Cheer echoing off empty Legends Seats when Joe Girardi finally emerged to pull the starter.

I've never been sold on Nova, but then again, Melky Cabrera was another Yankee prospect I never thought much of. Melky was a likable kid, responsible for a random T-shirt craze, and known to frequent many a New York night club with partner-in-crime Robinson Cano. Glow sticks were prominently involved.

But as a ballplayer? Imminently replaceable, an assessment the Yankees apparently agreed with. A noticeably more fit Cabrera looks like a different player with the Royals, however. He homered for the second time in the series on Thursday, clearly relishing the moment to rub it in against his former employer. Quietly, he's having a nice season, and you have to wonder if Brian Cashman should've listened to A-Rod's plea to bring back the outfielder in the offseason.

The rest of the evening was forgettable. KC prospect Eric Hosmer homered again, leading to 4,000 reaction shots of his family in the stands. (Note to TV producers: I don't care.) Francisco Cervelli's awful defensive performance had Jorge Posada rolling in his grave. Alex Rodriguez hit a solo homer in the eighth so meaningless the ball disappeared before landing. I was subjected to numerous promos for MLB Network's "Intentional Talk" program, which puts Chris Rose and Kevin Millar in the same room because that's the pairing baseball fans have always dreamed of.

Okay. I'm bitter and hungry. Maybe I do need a Yogi-ism to feel better.

"If the world were perfect, it wouldn't be."

Preach, Yogi. Bring on the Sox.

Dan Hanzus is a contributing writer to Pinstripe Alley. Reach him at dhanzus@gmail.com or on Twitter @danhanzus.