The games are beginning to resemble real games more and more as only 4 pitchers pitched today. Brian Bannister and Luke Hochevar each saw 3 innings of work, with Banny giving up 2 runs and the Hooch giving up none. Dan Cortes and Yasuhiko Yabuta each saw an inning of work each, Yabuta didn't give up a run but Cortes gave up a 3 run big fly to Rangers 'spect Justin Smoak after walking 2. Offensively, the Royals only mustered one run each in the 5th, 7th and 8th innings. The Royals ended up losing to Kevin Millwood and the Rangers 5 to 3.
The Royals hitters mustered just three runs on 6 hits today. The only XBH were a double from Crisp and a homer from Gordon. Brayan Pena did have a stolen base. I guess he runs well for a catcher. Ha. Once again, the Royals only drew 2 walks (Tommy Murphy and Brayan Pena) but only struck out 5 times, but left 6 runners on base. The Royals defense turned 3 double plays.
The Royals pitching wasn't awful today. They gave up 5 runs on just 6 hits, tallying 6 strikeouts against 3 walks. The Rangers only left 1 runner on base as a team, so they obviously got pretty lucky, or did very well with runners on base, depending on how you view it. (luck!)
Hitter of the Game
Alex Gordon hit his 2nd home run in as many days, but I'm gonna give the hitter of the game award to Coco Crisp. Coco had as many RBIs as Gordon (1), but had twice as many hits (2). Coco had 2 hits, including a double, and one RBI. He also struck out once. Coco's average this spring rests at .400 after today's action.
Pitcher of the Game
Luke Hochevar gets the pitcher of the game award hands down. Luke pitched 3 scoreless innings today, surrendering just 2 hits (both singles), while striking out 2 and walking none. Luke's ERA this spring training is 3.60, and after today's outing, so is Brian Bannister's.
The Royals do not have a scheduled game tomorrow.
The WBC starts tomorrow, with China taking on Japan and Chinese-Taipei taking on Korea. Both games are scheduled to start at 3:30 AM central time, and can be viewed on ESPN 2, or on www.worldbaseballclassic.com . I realize there is not much excitement around here for this event, and I find that disappointing. The WBC has the potential to be like the Olympics if we allow it to be. It also has the chance to improve the quality of the MLB, due to the increased interest in baseball worldwide. I genuinely hope this WBC will help grow interest both in the US and around the world.
I'll call it now, I believe that Team USA will win this WBC. I realize they've been hit hard with injuries, but we definitely have a better team than we did in 05, and I feel like the players really are gonna play with a chip on their shoulder, plus a lot of other significant teams have lost really good players, so the injury bug has bitten everyone, pretty much. My pick for the runner up is Japan.
Leave comments on your pick for winner and runner-up.
Thanks, as always, for reading.