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LJWorld.com weblogs Broken Bat Single Kansas City Royals Blog

Royals Week In Review and Preview - 4/4/2011

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Welcome to the first Royals week in review/preview of the year. The title pretty much describes what you will expect to find, however I will be experimenting with the format throughout the season to figure out what works and what doesn’t. The idea is that if this was the only Royals related thing you read all week, it should provide you with everything you need to know. If there's anything you think is missing or would like to see, let me know in the comments

It's only the first week of a very long season, but the Royals are in first place right now. It's not likely going to last, but it gives us one more week to dream and keep our hopes alive. Crazier things have happened than this year's Royals contending for the division.

Standings:

  1. Royals
  2. White Sox -0.5
  3. Indians -1.5
  4. Tigers -1.5
  5. Twins -1.5

Game 1: Angels 4 – Royals 2 - Boxscore

Opening Day. Everything is over-analyzed on this day. The Royals lost, so everyone assumed they would never win again. The Royals faces Jered Weaver who is one of the best pitchers in the American League. The Royals never scored when he was in the game, but they were patient and ended up scoring two runs off of the Angels bullpen. Unfortunately, that wasn’t enough as the Angels scored 4 runs against Royals starter Luke Hochevar.

Game 2: Angels 1 – Royals 2 - Boxscore

The Royals signed Jeff Francis as a free agent hoping he would pitch close to the way he did prior to his injuries. On this day, he did just that. He went 7 innings, walked 1, stuck out 4 and allowed one earned run. It was the only run the Angels scored as the Royals bullpen again kept their opponents scoreless. With the game tied at 1 in the bottom of the ninth, Kila Ka’aihue smashed a solo homerun to give the Royals their first win on the season.

Game 3: Angels 4 – Royals 5 - Boxscore

Royals starter Kyle Davies gave up four earned runs in 5.1 innings, but again the bullpen stopped the Angels offense in their tracks. The Royals scored a pair of runs on singles by Matt Treanor and Chris Getz in the bottom of the 8th to take their first lead of the game. Joakim Soria earned his first save of the year by shutting out the Angels in the 9th inning.

Game 4: Angels 9 – Royals 12 - Boxscore

On a very windy day, runs were plentiful. At the end of the 9th inning, the game was all knotted up at 9. In what was déjà vu all over again, Royal relievers Joakim Soria and Tim Collins combined for four scoreless innings and in the bottom of the 13th Matt Treanor again got a clutch hit. This time, it was a three-run homerun that sealed the series for the Royals.

Position Player of the week: Kila Ka'aihue

He hit .231/.412/.538 in 4 games with a game-winning walk-off homerun. He currently leads the team in walks with four.

Starting Pitcher of the week: Jeff Francis

He pitched seven innings, gave up one earned run while striking out four and walking only one.

Relief Pitcher of the week: Tim Collins

The diminutive rookie reliever threw four scoreless innings in which he struck out six and walked only one. Three of those four innings were in extra innings with extremely windy conditions.

On The Farm

None of the Minor Leagues have actually started their seasons yet, however two of the Royals affiliates faced off against each other in an exhibition game at Kauffman Stadium Saturday. The Omaha Stormchasers (AAA) beat the Northwest Arkansas Naturals (AA) by a score of 4-1.

The Week To Come

The Royals will get their first taste of Division play when they face the Chicago White Sox and Detroit Tigers. If they have any hopes of holding onto first place for another week, winning three of the five games this week is a necessity. The Royals will send their Opening Day starter Luke Hochevar to the mound to face the White Sox to begin the week on Tuesday at 7:10.

Upcoming Series:

4/5-4/6 vs Chicago White Sox

4/8-4/10 @ Detroit Tigers

Nick Scott is a contributor to Royals Authority and is the host of the Broken Bat Single Royals podcast, you can follow him on Twitter or on Facebook.

Comments

Shardwurm 3 years, 9 months ago

Great. Another KK groupie.

I would have gone with Gordon.

Nick Scott 3 years, 9 months ago

I thought long and hard about Gordon. But Kila got on base more often and hit a game winning homerun. Both would have been good choices.

And yes, I'm a Kila groupie. There's something about guys who are good at baseball that draw me to them. It's one of my weaknesses.

july241983 3 years, 9 months ago

I would have gone with Treanor. His defense, game-calling, and timely hitting are a big reason why the Royals are 3-1.

Nick Scott 3 years, 9 months ago

I have no idea how his game calling did or didn't effect the games he caught, so I can't comment on that.

He had two big hits, but oddly enough the single biggest hit of the weekend was Wilson Betemit's double.

Treanor was a good candidate, but I think Kila did it day in and day out.

sallyone 3 years, 9 months ago

I was at fridays game, pretty exciting stuff. The royals might just have a halfway decent team this year. I bet they win between 70-81 games.

Nick Scott 3 years, 9 months ago

Just as I was warning against being too down after Opening Day, we need to not get too excited about one series. But it's fun to let hopes run wild sometimes. I think 70 wins is easily attainable for this team. At the very least, they will be fun to watch.

banjax451 3 years, 9 months ago

Exciting stuff indeed. I have nothing against Kila as positional MVP of the weekend, though in all honesty...one could make a case for Frenchy (though I won't).

Btw...minor correction to the above: the White Sox series is on 4/5 and 4/6

Nick Scott 3 years, 9 months ago

changes made, thanks for pointing that out. I appreciate it.

You are right Francoeur was clearly an honorable mention and a decent choice for the positional player of the week. Lots of solid performances this weekend.

Sense641 3 years, 9 months ago

No mention of Aaron Crow? A Kansas kid who makes his major league debut thursday and records a win on Saturday. Nice job.

Nick Scott 3 years, 9 months ago

Aaron Crow was definitely a story for the weekend. He deserves a mention for sure. Although I don't use the "W" word around here. I anticipate lots of Aaron Crow talk forthcoming as well. Tim Collins just did a better job in the relief role this weekend. He was impossible to top. I'm high on crow though.

brushfire1 3 years, 8 months ago

Kila was definitely not the position player of the week. I agree that his home run was big in getting them there first win, and more confidence that they could come back in the other games, but Treanor also hit a game winning home run as well as playing stellar defense behind the plate. Frenchy also had a better week than Kila, hitting better and throwing a runner out at home. Heck... he even walked IN THE 9TH INNING WITH A CHANCE TO WIN THE GAME. That was unbelievable.

Nick Scott 3 years, 8 months ago

Treanor only had 8 AB's this week. Hard to justify being the best if that's all he gets to the plate. He had two clutch hits in his favor and the block at the plate. But I couldn't give it to him.

Kila got on base at a .412 clip this week. That's pretty amazing. Especially if you add it to the fact he hit a game winning homerun. Considering the situation, that homerun was bigger because the Royals had nobody on base. Treanor just needed a hit. Not to take away from it, it was nice. But I'll still go with Kila.

Francoeur had a decent week but didn't get on base enough and whiffed in a big spot on Opening Day. All three deserve consideration, but I'll stick by my decision to name Kila.

july241983 3 years, 8 months ago

Treanor got on base at a .545 clip! He got on base only 1 fewer time than Kila in 6 fewer PA's. He also had more RBI's (and as you mentioned, two clutch hits to Kila's one). And he had two great blocks at the plate, which contributed to two runs saved. I love Kila. I expect him to have a great year. He will surely have many weeks that are the best of the Royals players. But Matt Treanor had the better week to open the season.

Nick Scott 3 years, 8 months ago

That's a really good rebuttal to having Treanor as the player of the week. Maybe i should put this up for debate every week and we can decide as a group.

Nick Scott 3 years, 8 months ago

I'd love some feedback on what you would like to see added to the weekly preview/review.

july241983 3 years, 8 months ago

I just glad there is some Royals talk on the ljworld website. I'm also glad that there are several worthy candidates for a player of the week.

Nick Scott 3 years, 8 months ago

Thanks July. That's great to hear. I'm sure that the editors at the LJWorld would be interested to know that...just saying...hint, hint.

It is nice not to have to pick from the bottom of the barrel to find a position player of the week. I'm glad there is debate on the topic and there are lots of choices.

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