NEW YORK - Kevin Brown's frustrating season finally reached a boiling point, and now his hot temper could cost the Yankees at the most important time.
Brown broke his nonpitching hand when he punched a wall in the clubhouse Friday night during a 3-1 loss to the Orioles that cut New York's lead in the East to just 21/2 games over Boston.
"Stupidity," Brown said, choosing his words carefully.
"I reacted to frustration I'd swallowed all year. ... There are no excuses. I let it boil over and I did something stupid. I owe my teammates an apology for letting my emotions take over like that."
Already short on starting pitching, the Yankees were unsure how long the right-hander might be out. He was to be examined by a hand specialist today.
"My plan is to splint it and pitch. I just pray that my stupidity didn't hurt the team," Brown said.
Acquired from Los Angeles in the offseason, the oft-injured Brown missed seven weeks in June and July with a strained lower back and intestinal parasite. He tweaked his knee while covering first base on an awkward play in the fifth inning Friday, then was hit on the right forearm by Miguel Tejada's run-scoring single in the sixth.
Steamed, he walked around the clubhouse in the middle of the sixth and punched a wall, breaking two bones in his left hand.
That was the end of his night.
"You just can't do this, there's no doubt about it. You've got to keep your emotions in check," general manager Brian Cashman said. "It's a major issue that we shouldn't be dealing with. It's a problem."
Cashman and Yankees manger Joe Torre were visibly annoyed. Cashman said Brown could be disciplined or fined. Torre said he spoke with Brown and expressed his disappointment.
"Certainly uncalled for and unnecessary," Torre said. "There's more to this game than one person. We rely on him a great deal. It's not something that's helping the team, obviously."
TWINS 2, ROYALS 0: Johan Santana pitched a no-hitter through six, finishing with seven shutout innings for host Minnesota.
Desi Relaford lined a clean single to left leading off the seventh to end Santana's bid. Still, the league's Pitcher of the Month for July and August won his ninth straight start and further strengthened his Cy Young Award credentials.
Santana gave up one hit and one walk, striking out 11 and throwing 106 pitches. J.C. Romero pitched the eighth to extend his club-record scoreless streak to 321/3 innings.
A'S 7, BLUE JAYS 4: Bobby Kielty hit a go-ahead homer off Ted Lilly, the pitcher he was traded for, and Nick Swisher doubled and walked twice in his major-league debut to lead visiting Oakland.
Tim Hudson won his fourth straight start for the West-leading A's, who won for the 15th time in 17 games. Kielty's two-run homer off Lilly gave Oakland a 5-4 lead in the sixth.
WHITE SOX 7, MARINERS 5: Juan Uribe homered and Roberto Alomar had a two-run double to lead host Chicago. The game was halted for a few minutes in the sixth inning when a man ran across the outfield after Uribe's home run. The man was chased by 11 security guards from rightfield to left-center and was escorted off the field.
ANGELS 10, INDIANS 5: Troy Glaus homered for the first time since May 11 and Garret Anderson and Bengie Molina also homered to power visiting Anaheim as the Angels snapped a three-game losing streak.