Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Melville Shines in Debut, Trey Hillman Sucks..

I am getting sick and tired of watching Trey Hillman make stupid decision after stupid decision.  George Brett can bitch and moan all he wants, but the fact of the matter is that the media complain about Trey's moves because the media know what the hell they're talking about..

Pulling Gil Meche after 87 pitches when he's got the best stuff he's had all season - mistake
Replacing him with Jamey Wright who's practically already thrown his arm off and it's not even June yet - mistake
Replacing him with Sidney Ponson who obviously sucks.. - mistake
Bunting DDJ over with John Buck in the 6th (I think) inning with 1 out - mistake

You think that it's not a big deal, but when we're 4 games out of the playoffs in September remember nights like tonight, when a competent manager who would bring in a guy like Robinson Tejada with the bases loaded instead of bringing him in to clean up Hooch's mess.. it just doesn't make any sense..  Use your best pitchers in the close games and let them pitch the most innings.  Jamey Wright has had a nice start to the season, but the dude wasn't even on a major league contract before the end of ST.  He's already thrown like 500 innings and his stuff isn't electric.  I know that Joakim is hurt, but jeez, don't act like our bullpen is 05 status.. it's clearly better than that. 

Look at it this way, of the 4 pitchers that pitched tonight, they would rank like this in terms of current ability:


So why don't you let Meche pitch into the 7th and if he has some trouble bring in Tejada to bail him out, we're up 2 runs at that point, shouldn't you use your 2nd best pitcher, remember, as you achieve outs, there are less opportunities for the other team to score and win, so while the outs are more "valuable" in the 9th than in the 1st (think of it like the clock ticks faster after the 2 minute warning than before in football) it's also more difficult to come back because you have less chances to screw up.  Use your better pitchers while you have the lead, don't let your worse pitchers come in and screw it up.  Jamey Wright got screwed on a HBP call but that doesn't make it ok to bring in an even worse pitcher in Sidney Ponson, who is 1-5 now, btw.  It frustrates me to no end, and I really want Trey fired.  Seriously.


Hitter of the Game

I guess Jose Guillen.  Jose was 2-4 with a walk, 2 k's 2 RBI and a run scored.  One of his hits was a double.

Pitcher of the Game

Gil threw 87 pitches, 55 were for strikes.  His line ended up looking like this: 6 ip, 6 h, 2 er, 1 bb, 2 k.. the k's are lower than you'd like, but he wasn't bad at all.. a lot of ground ball outs and not many hard hit balls..


The Don pitches tomorrow.  He'll face off against Carl Pavano in an epic battle (just kidding I hope) in an afternoon game.  First pitch is at 1:10.  If you CAN go, then you SHOULD go.

Minor League Notables

Derrick Robinson had another 2 hit night, going 2-5 with a run scored and 2 more stolen bases.

Mike Moustakas was 3-5 with a double, an RBI, and 2 runs scored.

Johnny Giavotella got on base 3 times as he was 1-3 with a triple, an RBI, 2 walks, and 2 runs scored.

Danny Duffy earned the win tonight as he went 5 innings giving up 3 runs on 7 hits 2 walks while striking out 5.  He is now 5-1 with a 3.43 ERA.. I'll take it.

Nick Van Stratten was 4-4 tonight with a double, a triple, 2 runs scored, 3 RBI and a walk and a  stolen base.  Alright!

Tim Melville made his 2009 debut tonight, he pitched 6 innings, allowing just one run on 2 hits and 1 walk, striking out 2.  He earned the win.

Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Brett Blows Up, Royals Roar Back..

and I was there to witness it all!

The Royals are now officially 4-0 in games that I've been to this season.. is it safe to say I'm a good luck charm?  I hope so..  

The Royals came back after being down 5-2 in the ninth to win in front of a raucous crowd of 25,024.  While it was a T-Shirt Tuesday, I didn't even remember that it was one when I decided I wanted to go this afternoon.  Brian Bannister came back to earth a bit, as his ERA skyrocketed to 2.75 from 1.80 after today.  He could have come away with a 6 inning 2 run affair, but some sketchy defense and a mistake to Kelly Shoppach did him in.  

Hitter of the Game

This might be the toughest choice of the year, as it really could be argued that any one of about 6 players could win the award.  I think I'll go with Mike Jacobs, which is interesting because I was kind of surprised he was even in the lineup tonight.  Since Cliff Lee was starting I figured we'd see a Buck/Olivo game, as they both hit lefties well.  However, Jacobs ended up paying off as he was 2-4 with a strikeout and no walks.  Jacobs drove in 1 run and scored 2.  His HR in the 9th inning really got the rally started, and that's why he gets the award.

Pitcher of the Game

Again, not an easy award to assign.  Banny gave up 5 runs over 6 innings, so it won't be him.  Horacio threw 2 scoreless innings and Farnsworth threw a scoreless ninth.  I think I'll go with Kyle Farnsworth, simply because he didn't let a 3 run deficit affect his game.  He came in, threw 14 pitches and got the ball back to the Indians.  He didn't give up any hits or walks and didn't strike anyone out.


Gil Meche starts for the Royals tomorrow against Fausto Carmona and the Indians.  First pitch is at 7:10.

Minor League Notables

Brayan Pena had 3 of the O-Royals 8 hits tonight.  He was 3-4 with a HR, 1 RBI and 1 Run.  He is batting .339 in AAA so far.

Kurt Mertins was 4-5 tonight with a triple and 3 rbi.  He did not score a run or strike out.

Jordan Parraz was 1-2 with an RBI triple and 3 walks.

Blake Johnson started for AA Northwest Arkansas tonight, he pitched 6 shutout innings allowing 5 hits, 1 walk and 3 strikeouts.  His ERA is down to 4.21 after tonight.

John Bale made another AA appearance tonight as he pitched 2 perfect innings tonight with 2 strikeouts.  His ERA is at 1.35 for AA so far.

Derrick Robinson's AVG is up to .246 as he had 2 hits and took a walk tonight.  One of his hits was a double.  He stole 2 bases tonight and his stolen base total is up to 20 so far this season.

Mike Moustakas had a 3 hit tonight as he was 3-5.  He did not drive in any runs or score any runs, nor did he walk or strikeout.

Paulo Orlando also had 3 hits, 1 of his hits was for a triple and he scored 2 runs but did not drive any in.

Fernando Garcia, a 20 year old 2nd baseman from Puerto Rico, was 2-4 with a triple and a walk tonight for A Burlington Bees.  He is batting .320 so far this season.  

Thoughts on Trey..

There's been a lot of drama surrounding Trey lately, culminating with Brett's blowup last night on the local news..  My thoughts are that he isn't awful, but my biggest beef with him is that he has been around baseball too much.  He is too typical of a baseball manager.  An intelligent baseball mind knows that it is almost never advantageous to bunt, but Trey still had DDJ bunting in the 4th (I think) inning tonight.  That's the same DDJ that hit the game-tying triple in the 9th inning.  Let the boys swing!   I don't hate Trey, I just wish that he would manage with the actual facts.  But I realize that very few managers do this.. so whatever.

Thanks for reading!

Wrapping up last weekend..

Well the Royals went 1-1 on Saturday and Sunday.. I guess I'll take a .500 stretch.

On Saturday it was a tale of Kyle Davies pitching fairly well, but the offense pumping out just 2 runs against Rich Hill and Co.

Sunday it was the Royals staying in the game early, despite some defensive and baserunning miscues and then turning the offense on late with 3 runs in the 8th against Jim Johnson.

Hitter of the Game

Alberto Callaspo drove in the only 2 runs on Sat.  He was 2-4 with his 15th double of the season.  He did not strikeout or walk.

Billy Butler drove in 2 runs on Sunday with a 2-5 performance.  Billy had a double, a run scored, no walks, and a strikeout.

Pitcher of the Game

7 innings, 6 hits, 3 runs, 2 bb and 4 ks earns Kyle Davies the award for Saturday.  Not Awesome, but definitely good enough to get the win.

Robinson Tejada's 2.2 innings and 0 hits allowed along with 1 walk and 3 ks earn him the hitter of the game award for Sunday.

Tomorrow (Today)

Brian Bannister faces Cliff Lee tonight at the K in a 7:10 start.  Get out and watch some baseball, it's an awesome day for it!

Look for tonight's wrap up and another minor league segment tonight.  Thanks for reading!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Royals outlast rain delay to beat O's and snap 6 game skid..

Zack Greinke probably threw his worst game of the year tonight.  He gave up 1 run over 7 innings on 6 hits and 2 walks while only striking out 6.  When that's your ace's worst start of the season 35+ games in, you're doing pretty well.  Tonight's win puts the Royals in first place by percentage points over the Detroit Tigers and the rest of the AL Central.  Woo.

Short post, so let's get right into it..

Hitter of the Game

The offense was pretty solid tonight and the award could go to quite a few hitters.. Olivo drove in 3 and homered, Jacobs homered, and Mark Teahen had 3 hits.  But it was Jose Guillen who reallly broke the game open with a 2 RBI single in the first inning.  Those 2 runs would prove to be enough as Greinke was pitching, so I'll go with Jose as the hitter of the game award winner.

Pitcher of the Game

Zack Greinke continued his quest to start the All Star game tonight, as he went 7 innings allowing 1 run on 6 hits and 2 walks while striking out 6.  His ERA is "UP" to 0.60 on the season.  Sick.


Kyle Davies will take on Rich Hill and the Orioles tomorrow in a 6:10 p.m. start.  Davies looks to build off his last start when he went 6+ innings and gave up just 1 run against the Angels last Sunday.

Minor League Notables

Kila Ka'aihue hit a home run tonight for Omaha.  He was 1-4 with a walk, an RBI and 2 runs scored.

Chris Nicoll struck out 4 in 2 perfect innings for AA Northwest Arkansas.

John Bale made an appearance for AA Northwest Arkansas as well, throwing a scoreless inning.  He gave up 0 hits and walked 1 and struck 1 out.  His ERA is at 2.45 in 4 appearances for AA.

After a slow start Jamar Walton has his batting average up to .296 after a 2-4 performance tonight.  He did not strikeout or walk.  Look out for Jamar, we signed him midway through last season and I think he has enough potential to be a pretty good sleeper prospect, he is 23 so he's a tad old for his level, but keep an eye out for him anyway.

Danny Duffy pitched 5 solid innings tonight, allowing just 1 run.  He struck out 3, walked 1 and allowed 4 hits.

Blaine Hardy started tonight for A Burlington Bees.  He threw 5 innings of 1 run ball, allowing 4 hits and walking 2 batters.  He struck out 4.  His ERA is at 2.67 on the season.

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Royals skid to season high 6th straight loss..

Well, looks like the Royals are back to their old ways..

No clutch pitching

No clutch hitting

no win.


This team is doing so many small things that lead to losses.  For instance, on Billy Butler's 2 RBI hit, he only made it to first base.  How does this happen?  The throw was going to the plate, and the cutoff man even bobbled it, and Billy couldn't even slide into 2nd base?  Granted, Jacobs made the third out next, but if Jacobs could have even singled the Royals would have had the lead again and who knows what might have happened.

Also, Ron Mahay couldn't find the strike zone.. why?  I understand if it's Shawn Camp or Jaime Cerda or Nate Field or Scott Sullivan or any of the other awful relievers we've had over the last few seasons.. but Ron Mahay?  He's a legit major leaguer with a 10+ year career.  I understand that sometimes you just don't have it.. but its games like these when you HAVE to be able to reach back and find a strike.. ugh!

We'll look for Greinke to throw a no-no tomorrow night in order to get the Royals back on track.  After tonight's loss they stepped back into 2nd (3rd) place in the division.  Ugh!

Hitter of the Game

Billy Butler earns the hitter of the game award for tonight's game.  Billy was 2-5 with 3 RBI, a run, a strikeout, and no walks.  One of Billy's hits was a solo HR.

Yesterday Mike Jacobs earned the hitter of the game award.  He was 1-2 with a HR, 1 RBI and a run scored.  He did not strike out or walk.  He pinch hit for John Buck.

Pitcher of the Game

Kyle Farnsworth gets the award for tonight, as he closed out the game with a perfect 9th inning.  He didn't strike anyone out.  His ERA is down to 5.11

Brian Bannister gets the pitcher of the game award for his performance yesterday, even though he left early with some shoulder stiffness.  He pitched 5.2 innings allowing 2 runs on 5 hits and a walk.  He struck out 3.


Zack Greinke will take on Adam Eaton and the Orioles tomorrow at 7:10.  It is a sellout supposedly, so we'll see how many people show up after this 6 game losing streak.

Minor League Notables

Jose Duarte made his AAA debut tonight, with a 1-4 performance, including a run scored.  He did not strike out or walk.  He played CF and batted 8th.

Carlos Rosa struck out 6 in 2.1 innings of work today.  He gave up 5 hits, including a solo HR.  He did not walk any.  

Brian McFall was 1-4 with a solo HR tonight.  He did not strikeout or walk.  He was the DH.

David Lough was 2-4 with a double, a run and an RBI.  He did not walk or strikeout.  He was the right fielder.

Mike Moustakas hit his 5th home run tonight.  He was 1-4 with 2 RBI and a run scored.  He struck out once and did not walk.  He played 3rd base.

Alex Caldera pitched 4 innings in his start tonight.  He gave up 0 runs and struck out 9.  He did allow 3 hits and walked 5, however.  His ERA is at 4.36.

Nick Van Stratten was 2-3 tonight with a double and a run scored.  He walked once and did not strike out.  He played center field and led off for the Burlington Bees.

Eric Hosmer was 1-2 with a 2 RBI double and 2 walks.  He did not strike out or score a run.  Eric played 1B.

Sam Runion started tonight, throwing 5 innings.  He gave up 2 runs on 8 hits and no walks.  He struck out 1 batter.  His ERA is at 7.88 on the season.  Ouch.

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Well Well Well, How times can change..

Since the last time I posted the Royals are 0-4, and have been outscored 21 to 7, Greinke has thrown a complete game 4 hit 1 run affair and lost all while walking no one, again, and the Royals have come crashing back down to earth, as they're just 18-15.  Ponson has been put in the bullpen, Luke Hochevar has been called up, and hammered.  The offense has sucked like the beginning of the year, but we are taking more walks.

Safe to say a lot has happened lately, some of it interesting, but most of it depressing.  I fell asleep in the 3rd inning of last night's game, that's the earliest I've fallen asleep during a Royals game.. ever.  I am excited that Luke got called up, but he was absolutely hammered last night, by the worst offensive team in the American League.. I know we have too many 3rd baseman already, but can we go back and redraft Evan Longoria #1 overall?


Let's go over the award winners for the last 4 games when I was slacking..


The Royals managed just 4 hits Friday night, and Billy Butler had two of them.  He was 2-4  with an RBI, no K's and no BB's.  One of his hits was a double.

Alberto Callaspo was the only hitter who had a hit and didn't strike out on Saturday, so he gets the award.  No one deserved it in this 0 run fiasco.

Mark Teahen was 2-4 with 2 doubles Sunday, so he gets the award.  He drove in a run but didn't score one.  He K'd but did not walk.

Coco Crisp was 3-3 with a HR and a stolen base yesterday, earning him the award.  He did make an error, but it didn't lead to a run.  He did not strikeout or walk, his batting average is up to .261 and his line is at .261/.382/.471 on the season.  Not bad.


Kyle Farnsworth gets the award for Friday as he pitched 2 scoreless innings, giving up just a single and striking out 2 while walking none.

Zack Greinke's ERA is at 0.51 this season, but he managed to lose on Saturday, as Joe Saunders simply outpitched him and our offense simply wasn't offensive.  While it sucks to see Greinke at 6-1, I think it's better overall for him, as maybe he'll fall out of the limelight a little, and there is no chance he will be 15-0 or something in July and be a national headline story, which overall is better for Greinke and the Royals, I think.

Kyle Davies gave up 1 run in 6 innings of work on Sunday, and he struck out 4, walked 3 and gave up 3 hits.  Davies start effectively knocked Ponson out of the rotation (at least temporarily)

Robinson Tejada gets the award for yesterday as he finished the game up, thank God.  He pitched a perfect 8th inning, striking out 1.


Brian Bannister tries to be the stopper of the Royals longest losing streak of the season today in Oakland.  He will face former Central Missouri State standout Josh Outman.  First pitch is at 9:05 Central time.  I will probably post after the game and catch up on my Minor League Notables segment.

Thanks for reading!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Luke Hochevar and Brian Bannister combine for 14 IP 10 H 0 R 1 BB 16 K .. Solid..

6 game winning streak.. 

Pure awesomeness.

Short post today, it's been awfully busy..

and I'm still trying to cope with the Manny news.  It's too soon for me to talk about it.

Hitter of the Game

Billy Butler was the only Royal with 2 hits, and one of only two Royals with an RBI.  He gets the award today, he was 2-4 with an RBI, no runs, strikeouts, or walks.

Pitcher of the Game

I don't necessarily like it when starters only go 6 innings, but Banny was pretty damn good today, even without his best control.  He went 6 innings, allowing 5 hits and walking 1 while striking out 7.  He did not allow a run, earned or otherwise.


The Royals travel to LA tomorrow to take on the Halos.  Gil Meche will take on Matt Palmer.  First pitch is at 9:05 central time.

Minor League Notables

Nick Van Stratten was 4-6 with a HR, a 2B and 7 RBI.

Alex Caldera struck out 10 over 6 innings of 1 run ball.  He walked just one and allowed just 4 hits.  Very nice showing for him, he's got a 4.97 ERA on the year.

Kurt Mertins had a 2 hit game, going 2-4 with a home run, 1 run, 1 rbi and a strikeout.  He is batting .278 so far.

Dan Cortes had one of his better outings this season as he pitched 6 innings of 1 run ball.  He struck out 8, walked 4 and allowed 5 hits.  His ERA is "down" to 5.02 after tonight.

Brayan Pena played left field, batted 3rd, and had 2 hits for AAA Omaha.  He was 2-4 with an RBI, no k's or bbs.

Luke Hochevar had his best outing of the season, throwing 8 shutout innings against the Springfield Redbirds.  He struck out 9, walked none and gave up just 5 hits, all singles.  75 of his 97 pitches were for strikes.  I think it's gotta be close to hoochie mama time in Kansas City.

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

I keep waiting for them to lose.. still waiting..


I missed the game live, but I watched it after I got home, and I can hardly believe me eyes.  This team is on fire right now.  Period.  I know that it was Carlos Silva that we hit hard, but still..

The offense was great again, working 4 walks against 2 strikeouts.  The pitching, meanwhile, struck out just 3, but walked just 1.

Our record is 17-11 now, and we're still alone atop the Central.. Nice..

Hitter of the Game

Mark Teahen earns the award with his 3-5 with a HR, 3 RBI, 2 Runs, no strikeouts or walks.  Teahen is now hitting .307/.397/.485 on the season.

Pitcher of the Game

Mr. 1 Strikeout, Sidney Ponson earns the award.  Sidney threw 7.1 innings of 1 run ball, giving up 8 hits while walking 1 and striking out 1.  Of his 8 hits, 3 went for extra bases (all were doubles).


Banny faces off against Jarrod Washburn tomorrow at 1:10 central time.

Thanks for reading, Minor League Notables is taking a day off, but will be back tomorrow!

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Royals are streaking at the top of the Central..

Wow.  Another great game.  I can't remember a streak of such great games in a row in a long time.  The Royals again eek one out in extra innings, 8-7 over the ChiSox.  Davies had another bad start, which is troubling, but what is encouraging is that the Royals fought back and won after being down by 4 runs twice and 3 runs once.

Callaspo continues to pound the ball, is leading the league in doubles, has 2 hr, and is leading the team in IBB.  IF he continues to hit like this he HAS to hit third in our lineup at some point.

Zack Greinke's ERA+ came out today.  It's at 1,173.  Dallas Braden is 2nd in the AL with a 212 ERA+.  Thoughts?

On that note, Greinke won the AL pitcher of the month award for April.  Duh.

The offense was sick tonight, drawing 11 walks against 8 strikeouts.  The pitchers dished out just 5 walks against 11 strikeouts.  I love these numbers!

Hitter of the Game

Mike Jacobs.  It could go to any number of players, Crisp, Buck, Callaspo, Butler all were very important, but I'm going to go with the guy who turned a 5-1 blowout into a 5-4 ball game with the longest HR in Kauffman that I have ever seen.  Mike was just 1-5 with 2 strikeouts and a walk, 3 rbi and a run scored.  He is hitting .241 on the season, but his presence in the clubhouse has been tremendous.

Pitcher of the Game

Jamey Wright earns this award tonight.  Jamey threw 3 awesome innings and pitched around some shaky defense, too.  He gave up 3 hits and struck out 3 over those 3 innings, and walked no one.  His ERA on the season is a nice 1.45.


The Royals and Sidney Ponson take on the M's and Carlos Silva in a matchup of two ERAs over 7.  Should be an interesting game, probably not a 1-0 score.

Minor League Notables

Brandon Duckworth threw 7 innings of 1 run ball today.  He gave up 6 hits, 1 bb, and struck out 3.

AA Northwest Arkansas was rained out AGAIN.

High A Wilmington got rain shortened to 7 innings and was 2 hit by Potomac.

Derrick Robinson and Paulo Orlando had the only 2 hits.

A Burlington got 3 hit in a full game by Wisconsin.

Kyle Martin had 2 hits and Nicholas Francis had the other hit.

Thanks for reading.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Another Greinke Gem..


Tonight was easily the best baseball game I have ever seen in person.  It had everything, pitching, a home run, good defense, bad defense, an awesome crowd..

and Zack Greinke.

Seriously, who knew Greinke was even capable of this type of stuff?  He's now 6-0 with a 0.40 ERA and 54 strikeouts to 8 walks.  Cy Young Award type of start, to say the least.  Imagine that Greinke isn't really even in the prime of his career yet, especially as a pitcher, and that we have him for the next 4 seasons, at least, and I just get chills.

Colon had some K's but he wasn't really that good, I feel like the offense wasn't as good as it could have been.  The pitching on the other hand, was as good as it gets.

Greinke gave up 6 hits, but I think 2 of them could have maybe been scored as errors.  Even so, there was only a few hard hit balls all night, and any time a pitcher throws a shutout with 10 strikeouts and 0 walks in 104 pitches (78 strikes) you know your pitcher is on.

Hitter of the Game

I'll go with David DeJesus.  His home run really changed the game for the offense, I think.  David was 2-4 with a run, an rbi, a k and no walks.  He is now batting .253 on the season.

Pitcher of the Game

Zack Greinke.  No explanation necessary.


The Royals finish up the short 2 game series with the Sox tomorrow when Kyle Davies will take on Gavin Floyd.  

Minor League Notables

Eric Hosmer hit his 6th double of the season tonight as he was 2-3 with a walk.

Sam Runion started and threw 5 solid innings, allowing 1 run over 5 innings on 4 hits, 2 bb and 2 k.

Chris Lubanski continued his good start, as he had 2 of the O-Royals' 4 hits, both singles.  He did not strikeout or walk, his average so far is .318.

Doug Waechter pitched in a rehab outing, going 1 scoreless inning allowing 2 hits, 1 bb and no k's.

As I write this, the Naturals are tied 4-4 in the 12th inning with the Arkansas Travelers.  

Brian McFall, Joe Dickerson, and Corey Smith have 3 hits each.  McFall and Dickerson have a double each.

Thanks for reading!

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Two straight comebacks leave the Royals alone atop the Central..

Sorry there wasn't a post on Saturday, I was too busy turning 21..

I did catch a chunk of the game though, and all I can say is that the Royals gave me my favorite birthday present this year in the form of a W!  Coupled with Sunday's comeback stunner, the Royals are 14-11 and alone in first place in the central.  They are also in pretty good condition to move further ahead as the pitching matchups for the 2 game Chi-Sox series looks like this:

Bartolo Colon vs. Zack Greinke

Gavin Floyd vs. Kyle Davies

You have to love facing a teams 2 worst starters (probably) with 2 of your best 3 starters.  

Anyway, as I said, Saturday was my birthday, and I was excited that the Royals managed a win.  The Royals really aren't that good on my birthday.  In the 21 years that I have been alive, (and a Royals fan), the Royals have had 17 games on my birthday.  In those games the Royals are 7-10.  I guess that really isn't that awful considering how many years the Royals have been awful during that span.

The Royals impressed me to no end on saturday with their patience at the plate, even against a team that rarely makes mistakes.  The Royals drew 5 walks against 5 strikeouts.  Not great, but acceptable, especially in a win.

And again today, while the Royals drew just 3 walks against 5 strikeouts, they still did a good job of not giving up.  Jose Guillen's long ball really changed the game, but only the half inning before Meche had given up 2 more runs, had he not done this, Guillen's long ball would have given them the lead.  They fought and clawed back to the top.  It's a horrible cliche, but it stands true.  Good teams find ways to win these kinds of games, bad teams find ways to lose them.

Let's look at the award winners

Hitter of the Game

Sat - Willie Bloomquist, believe it or not.  Willie was 3-5 with a BB and K on saturday.  He hit his first home run of the season, stole 2 bases, drove in a run and scored 2 more.  Willie has impressed me so far this season.  He's actually not been bad.

Sun - It's gotta be Jose Guillen.  Guillen changed the game.  While Bloomy and Teahen had broken up the no hitter right before him, Guillen broke up the shutout and basically turned Baker's bid for a no hitter into a 6 ip 5 er affair.  Not bad.  Guillen was 2-3 with a BB, 4 RBI, 1 run and no strikeouts.  His two hits both when for extra bases, one was a double and the other was a home run.

Pitcher of the Game

Sat - It's gotta be Soria - Joakim the Dream pitched 1.2 scoreless innings, giving up just 1 hit and striking out 1 while walking none.  Joakim picked up his first win of the year.

Sun - I'll go with Jamey Wright, who picked up his 3rd hold of the year.  Jamey pitched a perfect 8th inning, striking out 2.  Jamey's ERA is at 1.72 so far this season.

Callaspo - Bert Reynolds has been absolutely awesome this year and is now hitting .380/.432/.570.  Just thought I'd bring that up..

Tomorrow - The Royals are playing the Chi Sox and Greinke will take on Bartolo Colon.  I'll be at the game and I plan on taking more pictures.  Maybe I'll actually post them this time, we'll see..

Minor League Notables - 

The Bees won 1-0 in 10 innings today on the back of Blaine Hardy and Brian Casey's strong pitching performances.  (they were the only pitchers used in the game.  They combined for 10 innings, 6 hits, 7 strikeouts, and 3 walks, no runs.  Nice.)

Wilmington was postponed

Northwest Arkansas was postponed

Omaha was postponed


Thanks as always for reading!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Ponson Experiment Over?

I must stress I have no exclusive knowledge as to what Dayton Moore and Trey Hillman are thinking.  I just know that when you have a team that is 12-11 and a starting pitcher that is 0-4 with an ERA above 7, it is unlikely that said pitcher will be in the rotation for long.

Needless to say Ponson was awful tonight.  disclaimer: I did not actually watch the game.  I did look at the box score, though, which lists Ponson as: 4.1 IP 9 H 7 ER 1 BB 1 K 1 HR.  Awful.  10 baserunners in 4.1 innings is way too much, especially when 5 of those baserunners reached base with extra base hits.  Even if Hoch isn't ready yet, there is no doubt in my mind that the Royals would be better off with Duckworth, Matt Wright, Heath Phillips, Lenny DiNardo, hell, maybe even Bruce Chen.  Ponson had his shot, and he has failed.  Time to move on.

Speaking of moving on..

The Royals drew 0 walks tonight and struck out 8 times.  I know we're facing the Twins.. but Really?


Ugh! So frustrating..

Hitter of the Game

HoG goes to David DeJesus.  Jose Guillen had more hits, but DDJ contributed to more runs.  On the night David was 2-4 with 3 RBI and a run scored.  He did not strike out or walk.  One of his hits was a double, his third of the season.

Pitcher of the Game

Wow.  Horacio Ramirez earned the PoG award tonight.  He needed just 13 pitches to get 5 outs, including a strikeout.  He did not give up a walk, hit, or run.  With this impressive outing, he dropped his ERA to 9.00.  Nice.


Brian Bannister takes on Glen Perkins in Minnesota tomorrow night.  First pitch is at 6:05, Banny will go for his 3rd win of the season.

Minor League Notables

AAA Omaha and AA Northwest Arkansas were both rained out tonight

Derrick Robinson was 1-4 with 3 Ks and a run scored.  He did steal his 12th base of the season, however.

Jeff Bianchi was 2-3 with a double and a run scored, he was caught stealing for the 2nd time this season.

Eric Hosmer scored the only run in a 1-0 Burlington Bees win.  He was 1-2 with a walk and a double.  He is batting .231/.354/.308 in 65 at bats this season.

Thanks as always for reading!

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Playing Catch Up

I missed posting on the last three games due to so much homework and studying, but I do have updates for the award winners.

Hitter of the Game

David DeJesus - David was 2-4 with the only RBI Tuesday.  He had a double and did not walk or strike out

Billy Butler - Billy had the second best game of the season for a hitter (I count Teahen's 5 hit showing as #1) when he was 4-5 with a double and two home runs on Wednesday.  Butler scored 4 runs and drove in 4 runs, he did not strike out or walk.

John Buck - John had an awesome game today, driving in 5 of the Royals 8 runs.  John was 3-3 with two triples and a double and a sacrifice fly.  Interestingly enough, John did not score a run.  He did not strike out or walk.

Pitcher of the Game

Robinson Tejada - Tejada pitched 2.1 scoreless innings Tuesday after Meche left with a sore back.  Tejada gave up 2 hits including a double, walked 1 and struck out two.

Zack Greinke - Zack had his worst start of the year and still earns pitcher of the game award for Wednesday.  He allowed 2 runs in 7 innings on 5 hits and 2 walks.  Greinke struck out 8, and he still leads the AL in the triple crown.

Juan Cruz - While Davies wasn't bad, (3 runs in 5.2 innings) I'll go with Juan Cruz, who proved the Royals would be OK if Joakim had to miss an extended amount of time.  Juan earned his first save of the season (and the 2nd of his career) as he pitched a 1-2-3 scoreless ninth, striking out one hitter.

Tomorrow - Sidney Ponson will take on Kevin Slowey tomorrow night at the Metrodome.  First pitch is at 7:10, normal posts should resume tomorrow.

Thanks for reading!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Bannister effectively wild and wildy effective..

Well it was definitely a good game tonight, although it was pretty weird, as well.  I've never seen a game in which a pitcher has been so dominant when pitching so poorly.  Brian Bannister had only 53 strikes in 103 pitches and yet threw 7 innings giving up just one run on one hit.  He did walk six and strike out two and the game was weird all the way around.  David Purcey struck out just three Royals after being a big time strikeout pitcher in his other starts this season.

Guillen went yardski twice and Miguel hit a home run to center field.  Bloomquist's line ended up 1/2 with 2 walks and a sac fly.  His only hit was a triple.  Coco had another walk.  Teahen had 3 of the hardest hit balls of the game and was 0-3 with a walk.  The Royals as a team took 8 walks, which is encouraging.

Overall it was a fun game, although it was rainy and a bit cold, I had a great time.  The stadium looks awesome and it really feels like a major league ballpark now.  Hopefully I'll be able to upload my pictures sometime tomorrow and get them posted.

Hitter of the Game

Has to be Jose Guillen.  Jose was 3-4 with 2 home runs, 2 runs scored, 3 RBI, no walks and no strikeouts.  Jose was really impressive today as both of his HRs were no doubters and had to be on a night like tonight with the way the weather was.

Pitcher of the Game

This will be the only time this season a pitcher with 6 walks gets the PoG award, but Banny earned it tonight.  He was effectively wild and wildly effective, giving up just one hit in 7 innings, walking six and striking out two.  It was encouraging to see Banny be effective even without his best control, or even his better control, which he blamed on the weather and the wetness of the ball.


Gil Meche will face Scott Richmond in a 7:10 start.  The Royals will again try and climb back into a tie with Detroit for first place as Detroit is now 11-8 while the Royals are 10-9.

Minor League Notables

The O-Royals offense got to Rangers Super-Prospect Neftali Feliz today, getting 5 runs (although all 5 were unearned) in 2.2 innings off of 3 hits and 4 walks.  The O-Royals won 8-1 over OKC in a game that was called after 7 innings.

Chris Lubanski had 2 more hits, going 2/3 with a double and a walk.  He drove in 2 runs and scored 1 himself.

Luke Hochevar threw 6 innings giving up 1 unearned run on 4 hits and 2 walks.  He struck out 7 and threw 96 pitches.  His ERA is now 1.44 this young season.

Jose Bonilla, the young catcher for the Burlington Bees hit his first home run of the season tonight.  On the game he was 1/3 with 2 rbi and a run scored.

Thanks as always for reading.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Ponson OK as offense falters..

I guess we should be proud of Sidney Ponson for not sucking.  But while Greinke is 4-0, Sidney is 0-3.  Hey I know he pitched 8 effective innings today, and was a hanging breaking ball away from 8 great innings, but he's still 0-3, and his job is to win ball games.

That being said, the offense didn't help him out any.

Hitter of the Game

This might be the only time this year that I pick a hitter who went hitless for the hitter of the game award.  But Coco Crisp scored the first run and took 2 walks so he is going to get the award for today.  Coco did get thrown out trying to steal 2nd, but it took a perfect throw to nail him. Coco did not strike out

Pitcher of the Game

I guess Ponson will get it.  He pitched 8 innings allowing 3 runs on 6 hits, he walked 0 batters and struck out 7.  His biggest mistake was a 2 run hr from Brandon Inge in the 2nd inning


I'll be going to the game tomorrow and I'll witness Brian Bannister's 2nd start.  He'll pitch against the Blue Jays who will send David Purcey to the mound.  The Royals will try to get back above .500 again.

Minor League Notables

Jeff Bianchi had a 2 hit game, going 2-4 with a double, a hr, 3 rbi, a run scored, and a strikeout.

Mike Moustakas had a 2 hit game as well, going 2-4 with a double, a run scored, and a strikeout.

Danny Duffy had his worst start of the season, earning his first loss in a 5 inning outing, allowing 6 runs on 8 hits including 3 home runs.  Duffy struck out 1 and walked 3.

Dan Cortes pitched for AA Northwest Arkansas, and had an OK outing.  He walked 4 and struck out 2 in 5.2 innings but gave up just 2 runs on 3 hits.  His ERA is 6.23 this season.

Thanks as always for reading.  I may snap some pictures for my post tomorrow.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Royals DFA the wrong Pena.

Well, a depressing game today.  Especially considering we were facing Zach Miner.  Ugh.. oh well.  Obviously Kyle didn't have it today.  We'll have to see how he bounces back next time out.  I'm (obviously) not ready to give up on him yet.

Hitter of the Game

Coco Crisp scored the only run, so I'll give him the award, but make no mistake, the offense was awful all around today.  Coco was 1-3 with 1 run, 0 rbi, 0 k and a walk.

Pitcher of the Game

Ron Mahay gets it today.  He came in and struck out the side on 16 pitches.  Enough said.  He gave up no hits and walked no one.


The Royals will finish up the Tigers series tomorrow as Sidney Ponson takes on Armando Gallaraga.  I expect another massacre.  Ugh.


Brayan Pena was DFAd today and all I have to say is why..  Tony Pena Jr. should have not even made this team, let alone still be hanging on.  By all accounts Brayan is a very useful player who is well.. a lot better than TPJ.  Oh well.  DFA Fail.

Minor League Notables

Derrick Robinson had a nice game, going 3-6 with 3 runs, 2 rbi, and a double.  He did not walk or strike out.  He also stole 2 bases, bring his season total to 11.

Mike Moustakas was 2-5 with a double and a home run.  Mike scored 2 runs and drove 2 in.  He did not walk or strike out.

Antonio Jimenez was 3-4 with a double and a RBI.  He also stole a base, he did not strike out or walk.

Thanks as always for reading!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Zack Greinke dominates (again), Juan Cruz's new nickname is "The Committee" ??

Doctor's Office

Joakim Soria is injured.  He will not be going on the DL immediately, however, which is encouraging.  Apparently he has some shoulder stiffness which all of the Royals' Brass are saying is not a big deal.  I'll believe it when I see him dominating on the mound again.  Trey Hillman says that he is going to use a closer by committee while Joakim the Dream is injured.  I guess that means Juan Cruz's new nickname is the committee, as he is the only one who should be closing.

It really doesn't get any better than this.

Greinke may have ended his scoreless streak tonight, but who cares?  He's first in the league in almost every pitch category and he continues to dominate.  Allard Baird is smiling somewhere..

I don't think Greinke will continue to go 9 innings 0 earned runs the rest of the year, but if he can even be anywhere close to this he's a lock for the AL Cy Young.  Awesome.

Our offense wasn't awful today either, banging out 8 hits and drawing 4 walks for 6 runs against a pretty good young pitcher.  Teahen and Callaspo both had home runs, which was a nice touch.

Hitter of the Game

We'll go with Mark Teahen who was 1-4 with the 2 run home run in the first inning, which would have been enough runs on its own for the win.  Teahen scored a run himself (obviously) and did not strike out or walk.

Pitcher of the Game

Zack Greinke - 9 ip 3 h 0 er 10 k 1 bb


enough said.


Kyle Davies will face Zach Miner tomorrow in a 6:10 start.  Supposedly the Royals have already sold 30,000 tickets, so it should be packed again as it's jersey give-away night.

Lets take a look at 3 minor league hitters who have impressed me so far this spring.  All of them are outfielders.

Derrick Robinson - High A - Wilmington Blue Rocks -  His defense is what he's known for, it's his offense he's been needing to work on.  Tonight Derrick was 2-5 with 1 run scored and 2 strikeouts.  He also stole a base.  On the season Derrick is hitting just .226/.314/.226.  This sounds unimpressive, but he's really not doing too poorly, having scored 10 runs in 14 games and driven in 5 himself.  He is also 9 for 11 in stolen bases in his first 14 games.  He has drawn 8 walks to 12 strikeouts.  Derrick isn't off to a great start, but his stolen bases and walks are what are impressing me so far.  Expect the hitting to come around, I know I do.

Jose Duarte - AA - Northwest Arkansas Naturals - Jose was 0-2 with a walk, a sac bunt and no strikeouts tonight.  He scored a run and stole 3rd base as well.  On the season Jose is hitting .348/.456/.457 which is awesome.  Jose is 24 this season and in his 2nd year of AA so it's expected he'd do well, but I'm very impressed.  Jose has drawn 10 walks to just 6 strikeouts and is 7-7 in stolen bases.  He has scored 9 runs and driven in 4.  Jose is regarded as the best defensive outfielder in the system.  I'd expect him in AAA probably sometime around the all star break.  If you've read my blog at all, you know I'm a huge fan of Jose.

Chris Lubanski - AAA - Omaha Royals - Chris was 0-3 with a walk tonight.  On the season he is hitting .302/.397/.492.  He has scored 15 runs in 16 games and has driven in 8 runs.  He has drawn 10 walks against 15 strikeouts and has 7 extra base hits so far.  He is also 4-4 in stolen bases.  I've obviously written a lot about Chris and you know I'm a fan of his.  If he continues to hit .300/.400/.500 (or very close) expect him in KC at some point this season.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Another late post.. woops

Yesterday's game is proof that the Royals will be nothing this year if not dramatic.  The Royals again lost due to an error by Trey Hillman, namely that Gil Meche should have NEVER pitched as long as he did.  I was fuming about 24 hours ago, but I've had time to settle down and realize that if Trey keeps this up (personally losing 3 games in the first 15) then he'll be gone by the All star break.  As it stands, the Royals will send Zack Greinke to the mound to extend his franchise record scoreless innings streak against the Detroit Tigers and Rick Porcello.  Interesting matchup, I won't get to watch it until after it's over, unfortunately, because of work, but I promise I'll have another update tonight about the game and I'll include some of our "hot" prospects down in the minors (here's a hint, they're 2 centerfielders).

Hitter of the Game

Alberto Callaspo's RBI double was pretty much the most important hit our offense had, though Mitch Maier was equally important in getting on base and then stealing 2nd.  Either way, Bert Reynolds Callaspo is going to be the hitter of the game award winner.

Pitcher of the Game

Gil Meche ended up with a line of 7.1 ip 5 h 4 r 3 er 7 k 3 bb, which isn't bad, but it should have been even better if Trey knew how to manage his bullpen.  Meche "earned" the loss, but he also earned the pitcher of the game award.


Which is actually "today", but as I said earlier, Greinke and Porcello face off in the battle of the phenoms.  First pitch is at 7:10.  Today will be one of the best games at the K this year, Fireworks friday, buck night, Greinke pitching, weather nice.  Perfect.  Get out there!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Return of the Professor..

What a game.

After the heartbreaker last night, the Royals really mended our relationship today with their 3rd shutout of the season.  By comparison, the Royals didn't get their 3rd shutout until May 4th, last season.  It came against the Indians, of all teams.

Mr. Bannister was not amazing tonight, but he didn't walk too many hitters, and his pitch count stayed decent.  He probably needs to continue to attack more / nibble less, but it's hard to pick on a guy for 6 shutout innings and 4 singles allowed.  He might not be one of the "big 3" who can pick up a strikeout almost at will, but if he maintains an ERA sub 4.15 then the Royals will have the best pitching staff in the A.L.  (assuming the big 3 continue to pitch at their ridiculous paces.)

This brings up the question.. when is Hoochie mama coming up?  Soon, I hope..

Read yesterday's post if you want to see what I said about how well Cliff Lee would do against the Royals..  It wasn't the 3 hit 9 k shutout he threw last year, but no one will deny Mr. Clifford Phifer Lee pitched a very good game today.

The offense needs to draw more walks, period.  Billy's in the first inning was nice, because it came after falling behind, but seriously, one walk?  Pathetic.  Cliff Lee threw 122 pitches, 85 of them were for strikes..  While he was pounding the strike zone, if the Royals decided to not swing first pitch so often we would have a better chance of making Cliff throw more outside the strike zone and getting to the bullpen more quickly, which should be every offense's goal.

Hitter of the Game

Like yesterday, I really struggled with this one today..  DDJ drove in the "winning" run but was 0-3..  Bloomquist drove in the other run on a bloop single.. Callaspo had 2 hits but no runs or RBI..  I think I'll settle with Coco Crisp, who really set the table today in the first with his second leadoff double in as many days.  Coco ended up with 2 hits in 4 at bats, and while he didn't walk for what seems like the first game this season (it's not..) he also didn't strike out.  He scored a run but didn't capitalize on an opportunity to drive some in during the 7th inning, oh well, he earns today's award.  In reality, the offense wasn't that great and the award should probably go to Butler, if anyone, simply for taking the lone walk.. Oh well.

Pitcher of the Game

I was considering using Soria simply because he finally got to pitch, but we'll go with the Professor, he wasn't dominant, but he was very good and threw 6 innings of shutout, 1 walk, 4 hit baseball in the big leagues.  Something that is very commendable and earns him the pitcher of the game award.


It's an early game tomorrow, with Gil Meche facing Anthony "I wear my hat low" Reyes.  First pitch as at 11:05 central time, so don't forget!

Also, I fully intend to include some minor league stats/analysis very soon, I just haven't quite picked a format and had the time to start it yet.  Fear not, it shall arrive!

Thanks for reading!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Halfway There..

Well, Ponson proved he is awful yet again, but at least Horacio is out of the rotation..

Bannister will start tonight as he was recalled from Omaha yesterday and Doug Waechter was placed on the DL (Forearm Strain.. uh oh).  Sure, a lot of things went the Indians way yesterday (6 double plays by the Tribe for instance) but the sooner Ponson is out of the Rotation the better.

This is why the Royals are halfway to having their ideal rotation.

Hitter of the Game

I guess I'll go with David DeJesus, who was 2-5 with a home run, 3 RBI and 2 runs scored.  David's HR came in the 9th with 2 outs to make the game a 1 run game once again.  The Royals never led after the 1st inning yesterday.

Pitcher of the Game

Robinson Tejada came in and struck out the side without allowing a hit.  He did walk 2, but oh well.  All of the pitching sucked yesterday and I feel like Tejada was the most dominant.


The Royals face off against the Indians at 6:05 again tomorrow.  Bannister vs. Cliff Lee.

Thanks for reading.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Hillman's Gotta Go..

..And fast.

I'm very frustrated writing this post to the point where it's more difficult than usual.  Trey Hillman cost the Royals the game today, and it was the second time *by my count* this has happened this season, and we're only 12 games in.

The Royals sit at 7-5, and if a normal, even semi-intelligent manager had made the calls these first two weeks there is no doubt in my mind the Royals could be 9-3 and sitting pretty atop the AL Central.  But no, Hillman HAS to use Joakim for the 9th inning when we have a lead.  Let's be honest, Joakim Soria is PROBABLY our best pitcher.  If the Royals need one batter retired, Joakim is the guy.  SO WHY IN THE WORLD DO YOU LIMIT HIS INNINGS? Sure, he pitched 4 straight games, so let him sit two, fine.  But why do you bring in the likes of Jamey Wright and Kyle Farnsuck to pitch instead of Soria?  It's gotta stop.  Soon.

Oh, and more AWFUL news.  Hillman has decided Gil Meche needs an extra day off, so instead of pitching Wednesday on normal rest *like he's done all his career with KC* Trey is going to give Horacio the Ball and throw off Meche's schedule, and essentially forfeit the game.  Boy, if Cliff Lee ever got an opportunity to turn his season around this would be it.  In yesterday's post I talked about what Lee did to the Royals in his 4th start last year.  I can only imagine he's already licking his chops seeing what he can do to us on Wednesday.  If the Tribe scored 22 runs in a game that Wang started, I wonder how many they can score against Horacio.. over/under at 30.. anyone?

Anyway, on to the routine stuff:

Hitter of the Game

DDJ and Jacobs both had good offensive games, and they both had defensive.. err.. miscues.  I'll go with Jacobs for the hitter of the game here, simply because his home run came at a more crucial time, at least by my estimation.  Jacobs was 2-4 with a home run, 2 rbi, 1 run scored and 1 strike out, 0 walks.

Pitcher of the Game

We'll go with Kyle Davies, the innings 3-6 version.  Kyle's line ended up at 6 ip, 3 h, 5 bb, 8 k.  Not bad for a #3 starter.  Davies has become very useful, even in his not-completely-effective current form.  He's one of those players that's very close to putting it all together *I think* and when he does, look out!


The Royals have off tomorrow, creating a perfect opportunity for DM the GM to fire Hillman the game loser.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Zack Greinke is The Chosen One..

Today was one of the more interesting days in baseball this season.

The Yankees lost 22-4, the Marlins are now 10-1 after their 2nd straight 9th inning comeback in as many days, and Zack Greinke set a new Royals record.

The record I'm speaking of, of course, is for the most consecutive innings spanning one or more seasons without allowing a run.  The previous mark, 33, was held by Kevin Appier and set all the way back in 1993.  Greinke one-up'd the Ape, as the record now stands at 34.

I didn't get a chance to watch the game until well after it ended, but I must say, it was easily the most dominating pitching performance by a Royal that I can remember seeing.  Greinke had everything working tonight, and what's most encouraging to me is how he performed with men on the bases.  Zack has always been a player who strives for perfection, and at times in the past it seemed like he would be a little frustrated with himself after making a mistake.  It was obvious tonight, however, that he really buckled down and made his pitches with men on base.

Greinke's line looked like this:  9 ip, 7 h, 0 r, 0 er, 10k, 0 bb.  

His combined line for the season is this:  3-0, 20 ip, 16 h, 0 r, 0 er, 26 k, 5 bb.

Remember Cliff Lee's ridiculous start last spring?  In his first three starts, he had this line:

3-0, 22.2 ip, 8 h, 2 r, 1 er, 20 k, 2 bb

Cliff Lee had a ridiculous start last year, and Zack Greinke is right there with him this year.  

In his 4th start last year, Lee faced the Royals and threw a 9 inning shutout, allowing 3 hits and striking out 9 while walking 0.  Greinke is set to face the Indians next Thursday in his next start, so it will be very intriguing to see what happens.

Today's game had a bunch of pluses, in my opinion.  Hillman let Greinke stay in even over 100 pitches after he allowed a 2 out single in the 9th.  Hillman put in Mitch Maier in the 7th.  Hillman didn't have any player bunt.  These are all good things.  I did think it was kind of dumb to put Maier in for Bloomquist and leave Callaspo at 2nd.  If he was going to make some defensive moves I think it would be best to put Maier in RF, Bloomquist at 2b and Pena at SS.  Although both Aviles and Callaspo batted again, so I understand the thought process of leaving them in until the bottom of the 9th inning, when neither of them (hopefully) would get the chance to bat again.

Maybe there is a big disadvantage to bringing in a player who has sat the bench the whole game to play one half inning of defense, but if Pena Jr. isn't on the roster to play SS in the bottom of the 9th inning of a two run game when your best pitcher is going for his first career shutout and the Royals record for consecutive innings without a run, then what the hell is he on the roster for?

Hitter of the Game

The Royals didn't have a great offensive night, but Billy Butler doubled in the winning run in the 6th inning.  Oh, and it was his 23rd birthday, so he'll get some special consideration for that, as well.  Billy has been off to a slow start this season, but he has looked better now that he has been playing 1B pretty consistently.  I'm not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing, but I imagine we'll soon find out.  

Pitcher of the Game

It's pretty easy to decide a pitcher of the game when there is only one pitcher in the game.  The Chosen One will earn his 3rd award in as many appearances this season, and he also gets me to hop on his MVP and Cy Young award bandwagon.


Kyle Davies will face off against Vicente Padilla in a 2:05 central time start tomorrow.  Kyle looks to bounce back from a "shaky" start that saw him give up 3 runs in 5.2 innings to the Tribe.

Thanks for reading, look for my minor league updates to start soon..

Friday, April 17, 2009

Teahen celebrates return to 3rd with 5 hits as Gordon hits the DL..

Tonight was one of those nights when (almost) everything goes right.  The starter had a quality start, everyone in the lineup had at least 2 hits except for DDJ, and well, the bullpen wasn't great, but we won the game.  Obviously Gil didn't have a perfect game, as the Rangers had plenty of baserunners, but he was able to pitch 6 shutout innings, and I'll never turn down that from my starter.  He also recorded 6 strikeouts, giving him 18 strikeouts in 20 innings.  Gil leads the AL with those 18 strikeouts, not too bad.

The Royals take over first place in the AL Central as they improve their record to 6-4 on the season.  Even more impressive, they have scored 11 more runs than they have allowed (43:32).  A sign which validates their above .500 record.

I said everyone but DDJ had two hits, well Coco didn't, he only had one, but that one hit was a HR.  Coco is now batting a ridiculous .235/.409/.647 on the season.  Remember when I said Coco would be the Royals best hitter this season?  Yeah, I wasn't kidding..

But Coco's game today didn't come close to our HoG, Mr. Teabag.

Hitter of the Game

Mark Teahen had one of the best games of his career tonight, as he was 5-6 with 3 runs and an RBI.  Teahen was a triple short of the cycle as he counted a HR, a 2B and 3 singles amongst his 5 hits.  Teahen will be playing 3B for the next few months as Alex Gordon recovers from his hip surgery, so look for Teahen to step it up at the plate as he settles in to his natural position.

Pitcher of the Game

Gotta be Gil.  Meche pitched 6 scoreless innings allowing 6 hits, none of which went for extra bases.  Gil struck out 6 batters and walked just 2, increasing his K:BB ratio to 18:4, very nice.

As I said earlier, Alex Gordon is expected to miss the next 2 or 3 months, as he had successful hip surgery in Vail, Colorado earlier today.  Mark Teahen will fill in at third for him, and Mitch Maier was recalled from AAA and will probably see some time in the OF while Guillen is still hurt, which will be for another week or so.  It will be interesting to see what roster moves get made once Guillen comes back from the DL.


Tomorrow Zack tries to maintain his league leading 0.00 ERA, as he'll face Kevin Millwood in a 7:05 central time start.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Just one of those games..

Well I think today was just one of those games.  The pitching was decent, the hitting was okay, there weren't really any defensive mishaps, but due to few lucky situations on both sides the Royals came out the losers.  It was one of those games where I wasn't terribly upset after the loss, I did question a few of Hillman's moves, but who cares, he's already proved himself a moron, so nothing really surprised me today.

As I stated yesterday, I figured a pitcher like Laffey would come in and just slice and dice our lineup, and he basically did.  We got to their bullpen for 2 runs, but their offense just came surging back anyway.  Kyle Farnsworth is the boob of the season so far, and he reminds me of Ambiroix Burgos, or at least his fastball does.  Sure, it's 94-96, but when it's that straight, it's supremely hittable.

Trey wasn't afraid to pinch hit players late in the game, which was reassuring, and while no one wants to see TPJ and Bloomquist together in the game, at least Hillman understands that Ponson is a groundball pitcher and the defense behind him is important.

Some might be upset at Teahen for getting thrown out by Choo trying to turn the single into the double.  Personally, I think it was a good aggressive base running decision however.  The Royals were down by 2 at that point and a leadoff double in the 8th would have increased the chances of winning the game.  Although Choo is left handed and he was ranging to his right, making it more of a difficult throw, he does have one of the better arms in the game and gunned down Teahen.  Did it cost the Royals the game?  Maybe.  Am I upset by Teahen's running?  Not at all.

Hitter of the Game

I was teetering between Mike Jacobs and Coco Crisp and I think I'm going to go with Mike Jacobs.  Crisp did walk twice (almost 3 times, you know what I mean if you saw the game) and hit a triple and scored 2 runs, but Jacobs took a walk to load the bases as well as hitting a solo HR after Mark Teahen got thrown out trying to take the extra base.  Overall a good game for both, but I'll stick with Jacobs who pinch hit for Butler in the 6th.

Pitcher of the Game

I'm gonna stick with Sir Sidney here.  I was very distraught when I heard he was making the club, but he really has been impressive.  His fastball has good movement to it, and if he could figure out his control just a little more he could really step in and be one of the better #4 pitchers in the AL central.  I'm not saying he's there yet, I'm just saying I do see some potential.


The Royals are off Thursday.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Royals pitching is leading the league in Ks.. nice..

What a game.  Tonight reminds me of games the Royals have been in in the past, except that it is usually the Royals who lose.  While the approach with Pavano on the hill wasn't great, they still managed 8 hits off of him in 6 innings, which isn't an awful number.  The strikeouts have got to go down and the walks have to go up, which did happen once we got to their bullpen (4 bb, 0 k).  There was a consistent approach to drive the ball up the middle and also to shorten the swings with 2 strikes, which is reassuring.

On the other hand, the pitching was good.  5.2 innings 3 runs is probably somewhere very near where Kyle will end up this season, I imagine, probably slightly better.  The 5 K's is nice, and the pitching staff as a whole has been absolutely awesome this year, as we lead the entire league in strikeouts.  John Buck was the man tonight, and I really hope he gets to start a few games in a row and see if he can put it together.  Kelly Shoppach finally broke through last year after showing flashes in the past in his age 28 season, which is how old Buck will be for the majority of this season.  Another positive about Buck's performance was the fact that Joakim the Dream didn't have to pitch in three consecutive outings, though I do like the fact that Trey isn't afraid of bringing him in three straight games.

Hitter of the Game

John Buck.  2-4 with 2 runs scored and 5 RBI on 2 home runs including  a grand slam.  He also threw out Josh Barfield.  Well, he didn't really throw out Josh Barfield, but we got the call anyway.  There's that Buck-Karma for you.  Buckarma.. interesting..

Pitcher of the Game

Juan Cruz recorded his 2nd hold of the season with 2 scoreless innings pitched tonight.  Cruz gave up just a single as he struck out 3 batters and walked none.  Cruz has yet to allow a run this season.


Sir Sidney takes on Jeremy Sowers tomorrow in a 1:10 start.  Interesting pitching matchup, definitely.   Sowers is the type of lefty who could slice and dice our lineup, especially in a day game after a night game, I think.  We'll have to make sure we focus at the plate and work the count.

No comments from yesterday's post, so I'll ask again.  What would you like to see me write about as far as minor leagues go?  Focus on a certain team, a certain player, rotate through?  All ideas are welcome.  Thanks for reading.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Greinke Ks 9 as Royals KO the Tribe..

I may be crazy because I know that TPJ had some nice defensive plays tonight.  But please tell me that for the rest of the time we don't have Gordon and Guillen we will have Maier and Callaspo instead of TPJ and Callaspo.  I understand that maybe Maier wasn't in KC yet or he was unable to play for some other reason, but on all levels Maier is a much much better player that TPJ, and I don't even necessarily think that Maier is above replacement-level.  That is simply a testament to how bad TPJ is with the bat.  

Anyway, run saving defensive plays from players who shouldn't be on our team aside, I thought tonight was a really good game.  The hitters only managed 5 hits, but I felt like we really worked the count a lot better.  It showed up in the box score as the hitters drew 5 walks against 6 strikeouts, a ratio I can live with from the whole team.  Greinke commanded the game from the first batter.  The strike zone was slightly large, but fairly consistent throughout the night.  

Teahen had a clutch RBI single on a 1-2 count in the first inning that I felt was really important because it reminded me of how Teahen hits when he is on.  The pitch was boring in on him and was low out of the zone but Teahen kept his hands in and stayed back and was able to drive the inside pitch back up the middle into centerfield.  Billy Butler had a huge double right after which drove in DDJ.  

The one thing I did notice is that Mike Aviles needs to start working the walk more if he wants to stay in the 2 hole.  I have been a fan of Mike's for at least the last 3 years, but I always figured his walk total would move up as he got older.  He almost reminds me of Angel Berroa in the sense that he is looking to hit anything that is hittable instead of looking to hit pitches that he can drive.  I'm not down on him, but it's just something to look out for.

Hitter of the Game

We'll go with Mike Jacobs today.  The offense was spread out today as no one drove in or scored more than 1 run, and no one even had more than one hit.  Mike Jacobs did have a long solo home run however, and he also took a walk.  If Mike Jacobs hit a home run and took a walk every game, he would be the best player in all of baseball.  Aim for the stars, Mike.

Pitcher of the Game

Gotta go with Donald Zackary Greinke on this one.  The Zack-Attack pitched 5 scoreless innings with 9 (count them, 9) strikeouts.  He did have 2 walks, which is just fine when you K 9 hitters.  Greinke did give up 6 hits, and 8 baserunners in 5 innings is starting to push the limits of where you want to be, but all in all, Greinke was awesome tonight.  The only thing he'll have to work on is not Meche-ing himself by throwing too many pitches.  He may get back to pitching to contact except for when he needs a K so he can get deeper into games.  Nice.


Carl Pavano will match up with Kyle Davies as the Royals host the Indians tomorrow.  First pitch is at 6:10 central time.

Question for all of the readers - 

I've been considering adding a section in my posts where I take a look at the minor league games, probably not all of them because that would take forever, but I might be able to write a paragraph on a game or a particular player or two, possibly a "prospect watch" section or something similar.. any opinions on this?  Please leave any ideas/advice in the comments section.  Thanks for reading!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

DO call it a comeback..

Well.. when the Royals gave up the lead in the 7th inning on Mike Jacobs lack of an ability to effectively field a ground ball, all hope was lost.  At least in my opinion.  When the next 5 Royals batters made consecutive outs, most all hope was lost.  But nay, not today, the Royals roared back on the bat of Butler, Pena, Callaspo and Buck.  I'll admit, I was surprised, as I didn't think the Royals offense had 6 runs in them.  

When Joakim Soria shut the door, I felt completely silly for having given up earlier.  Then again, this offense does suck.  Our DH and RF combine for 8 career home runs.. and neither of them are "young".  Ouch.

Hitter of the Game

Big ol' John Buck stole the show today with a 3-4 performance.  John drove in 3 runs and scored one himself.  He did not walk and struck out once.  2 of his 3 hits went for bases as he had a double and a home run.

Pitcher of the Game

I know that Gil could have easily had 7 shutout innings today, as it was his defense more than his pitching that let him down, but I have to go with Soria slamming the door shut by striking out the side en route to his third save of the season for the pitcher of the game.  Soria gave up no hits and walked no one.  Perfect.


Zack Greinke will take on Fausto Carmona tomorrow at the K.  First pitch is at 7:10 central time.

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Offense bad, HoRam worse..

HoRam bad, offense worse..

I had to work tonight and so I won't get a chance to watch the game until tomorrow morning, but I'll still name the award winners..

HoG goes to Mike Jacobs, 2-4 with a double, no K's, Runs, RBI, or strikeouts..  

PoG goes to Robinson Tejada, 2.2 innings, 3 walks, 6 strikeouts, no hits or runs.  The walks aren't great but 6 strikeouts makes it okay, I guess. 

Interesting attendance tidbit..

Today the Marlins had 39,412 people in attendance, the Royals just 31,271.  The difference in attendance was mainly because the Marlins had their first "Super Saturday" of the year, with a post-game concert of Pitbull, Flo-Rida, and DJ Laz, as well as fireworks.  Why don't the Royals have anything like this?  Sure, there really aren't any well known music groups from KC, but that doesn't mean we can't bring someone in.  The K has been completely renovated this last offseason, but it still feels like the only thing it's used for is baseball.  Kind of a waste, really.


Gil Meche faces off against Joba Chamberlain in Easter Sunday matchup.  First pitch is at 1:10 central time.