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Kansas City Royals week in review: 5/2/2011


Last week was an up and down week for the Kansas City Royals. They went 3-3, but got killed in the first three and won the last three. The first series was against the Indians and it pushed the Royals further away from first place. Fortunately, no other teams in the American League Central could win either so they maintained their 2nd place standing. The final three games were against the Minnesota Twins and the Royals stopped their losing skid and remained in striking distance of 1st place after the month of April.


1 Indians

2 Royals -4.5

3 Tigers -7.5

4 White Sox -10.0

5 Twins -10.0

Game 23: Royals 4 @ Indians 9boxscore

Royals starter Luke Hochevar gave up 3 home runs and 6 earned runs over 6.1 innings pitched. The bullpen was no better, giving up 2 home runs themselves to the white-hot Cleveland Indians. The lone bright spot was center fielder Melky Cabrera going 3 for 4 with a home run.

Game 24: Royals 2 @ Indians 7boxscore

Jeff Francis has been a steady force in the starting rotation, but on this night he stumbled. He gave up 5 runs in the bottom of the 1st inning to put the Royals in a hole to start. The Royals were able to score a pair of runs solo home runs from Jeff Francoeur and Mile Aviles in the 2nd inning. The Royals bullpen allowed 0 earned runs in 5 innings, but the offense was never able to score again.

Game 25: Royals 2 @ Indians 8boxscore

In order to avoid being swept in the series and to stop a 5 game losing streak, the Royals needed to take the final game from the Indians. In order to do that they needed a good start from Kyle Davies. Unfortunately, that did not happen. Davies gave up 8 earned runs in 3.1 innings and gave up 4 home runs. The Royals bats were kept quiet for a second straight game with only Matt Treanor collecting multiple hits.

Game 26: Twins 3 @ Royals 4boxscore

After a miserable 0-6 road trip, it seemed as if the season hung in the balance as the Royals returned home. Royals starter Bruce Chen played the role of stopper by throwing 5.1 innings and giving up just 2 earned runs. The play of the game was a sacrifice fly by Alcides Escobar to short left field that allowed speedster Jarrod Dyson to score the go-ahead run in the bottom of the 8th inning. Closer Joakim Soria did his job and the Royals ended their losing skid.

Game 27: Twins 2 @ Royals 11boxscore

Royals starter Sean O’Sullivan didn’t seem sharp, but he was effective. The Twins were only able to scratch two runs through 6 innings. The Royals didn’t do much better against Twins starter Brian Duensing as the Royals carried a slim one-run lead into the bottom of the eighth. Suddenly, the offense exploded as the Royals scored 8 runs and put the game away.

Game 28: Twins 3 @ Royals 10boxscore

Royals infielder Mike Aviles has been hot and he didn’t stop in the finale against the Twins. He went 3 for 5 with a home run and 4 RBI to help the Royals secure the sweep. It was the first time the Royals had swept the Twins in a series of 3 games or more since May 7-10, 1999.

Position player of the week: Billy Butler

Butler hit .333/.440/.667 last week with 4 doubles and a home run. He’s one of the best pure hitters I’ve ever seen play the game, which combined with his age makes me believe he will get to 3,000 hits in his career.

Starting pitcher of the week: Sean O’Sullivan

There weren’t many decent starting pitching performances this week. The best start of the week was one where O’Sullivan seemed to muddle along and allow the Twins baserunners, but no runs. He went 6.0 innings with 1 earned run, 7 walks and 3 strikeouts. If the Royals plan on continuing to compete, they are going to need a better weeks than this out of the rotation.

Relief pitcher of the week: Nate Adcock

For most of April, it seemed like Rule V pitcher Nate Adcock was going to see very sparse action. However this week, he got into two games. He pitched 4.0 innings, gave up no earned runs, struck out 4 and walked only 1.

On the farm:

Vin Mazzaro (RHP) struck out 10 batters in his last start for Omaha (AAA). He has a 4.86 ERA on the season with 22 strikeouts and 13 walks.

Danny Duffy (LHP) hasn’t allowed an run to score in his last three starts for Omaha (AAA). He sports a minuscule 0.90 ERA with 24 strikeouts and only 4 walks.

Mario Lisson (3B) of the Northwest Arkansas Naturals (AA) has caught fire. He’s hitting .310/.453/.786 this season with 6 home runs.

Pitchers Noel Arguelles (LHP) and Michael Mariot (RHP) are piggy backing each other and pitching on the same day in the rotation for the Wilmington Blue Rocks (A+). They’ve presented a formidable duo for opposing hitters. Arguelles has a 1.02 ERA with 15 strikeouts and 1 walk. Mariot has a 0.63 ERA with 15 strikeouts and 4 walks.

In his last 10 games, Brian Fletcher (OF) is hitting .432/.462/.649 for the Kane County Cougars (A-). He’s also stolen 4 based this season.

The week to come:

The Royals homestand continues against the Baltimore Orioles and the Oakland Athletics. If the Royals are going to continue to be contenders, they have to beat teams like these. Neither of them is great, but neither is a pushover either. The schedule in May doesn’t let up either, so grabbing a few wins at home could cushion a rough patch that might be coming.

5/3-5/5 vs Baltimore Orioles

5/6-5/8 vs Oakland Athletics

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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.


cato_the_elder 7 years ago

Why do you refer to a home run as a "homerun," i.e. one word instead of two?

Nick Scott 7 years ago

correction made. Thanks for pointing that out.

Nick Scott 7 years ago

home run is the correct spelling. for some reason, in my brain I thought homerun rather than home run.

Scott Morgan 7 years ago

nscott, me thinks it is homerun. Baseball slang. Thanks for the nice blog.

Nick Scott 7 years ago

I double-checked, the proper term is home run. We're all about being proper here.

Thanks for the kind words Wissmo. I'm glad you like it.

kirbypuckettusedroids 7 years ago

Nick, I'm just happy we took those loser Twins to the cleaners.

Donger 7 years ago

'Roids, it took you almost two and a half hours to comment this time. Did you get distracted punching the clown watching Mr. Rogers?

cato_the_elder 7 years ago

Nick, in my experience it's actually harder than one would think to find easy access to capsule summaries like these all in one place, which are especially helpful if you've been on the road and have missed some of the action. Thanks for putting this together.

Nick Scott 7 years ago

Thanks Cato. Honestly, I'm not 100% comfortable with the way they are written. I'm trying to improve them each week, I think they will get better as I do more and more of them.

I'm glad you like them. I really appreciate it.

Donger 7 years ago

I agree with Cato. Thanks as always for your excellent work. You consistently are one of, if not the, best sources of Royals' info.

Scott Morgan 7 years ago

I'm really primed for a nice run by the KC team. Slowly came back from the strike years to be a full tilt bozo fan again. Even taken in minor league games watching our future star younguns grow.

What fun the younger fans will have when the team becomes a playoff contender year after year.

Nick Scott 7 years ago


I'm primed too. I can't wait to see a team in contention for an entire season, playoff games and everything surrounding it. I truly believe it's coming and I think it's sooner rather than later.

parrothead8 7 years ago

I don't think the starting pitching will hold up all season, but like you, I believe the Royals' time is coming sooner rather than later. Add the prospects on the farm to Butler, Gordon, Escobar, and Soria, and I think we're looking at multiple playoff appearances over the next 5-10 years.

The one thing in your column I disagree with? Your assertion that Billy Butler "will get to 3,000 hits in his career." He'd have to avoid injury and average 200 hits per year (something he hasn't done yet) through his age 36 season. At his size, that's not likely to happen. I think he's got an outside shot at 2,500.

Nick Scott 7 years ago

The current rotation will absolutely not hold up even through the all star break in my opinion.

On butler, usually guys his size actually hold up better than most, plus the fact he won't be playing a position should lessen his chance of injury.

eminencefront 7 years ago

Bruce Chen pitched 5.1 innings last Friday? I know this is correct. but shouldn't it really be 5.33333333333333333333333333333333? the baseball purists will be knocking on my door any minute!

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