Monday, May 09, 2005

Hey, It's A Win

Plenty of interesting things to talk about. I so much enjoy discussing a win. First some fun notes about scoring runs:

• The Royals erupted for six runs in the fourth inning. That’s the most runs the Royals have scored in one inning this season. Their previous high was five runs which they have done exactly once this season (on April 30 at Cleveland.)

• Sunday’s win broke a five game losing streak. In those five games, the Royals scored eleven runs. Sunday they scored 10.

Mike Sweeney continues to be the man for this team. Sunday, he went 2-4 with a walk, a nice opposite field home run and scored all three times he was on base. The three runs scored by Sweeney tied the mark for most runs scored by a Royal in a game this season.

For a rare victory, things could have been better:

• Could Tony Pena please get it into his freaking head that this team needs to conserve every single out? Tony, outs are like valuable commodities. You get 27 of them per game. Giving them away by trying to steal bases with two outs, or by asking for a sacrifice bunt might make sense for a team that knows what they are doing. But asking a guy like Angel Berroa to sacrifice is just dumb. He’s more likely to get hit by a pitch than to lay down a successful bunt. Of course, after fouling off two bunt attempts, he swings at a ball up, out of the strike zone. Why even come to the plate if your at bat is going to be like that? Just save yourself the trouble and stay in the damn dugout.

• I wish John Buck could get it figured out at the plate where he shows no signs of snapping out of his season-long slump. His numbers are absolutely dismal. (.163/.212/.263) Remember, he went through the same thing when he was traded last year, getting off to just a horrible start. But after awhile, he was able to find his stroke and began to look more and more comfortable at the plate. I hope he can do it again this year. I haven’t given up on him, and I really like his defense, but jeez. Maybe he should worry now that Benito Santiago is available.

• The bullpen almost blew a seven run lead. The warning signs began popping up in the fifth inning when Mike Wood gave up a two out walk and a double, but got out of the inning. The wheels came off completely in the sixth when Wood gave up single, home run and a double. Enter Jaime Cerda, who looked like…Well, Jaime Cerda. After he gave up his walks and home run, it was Mike MacDougal’s turn. When it was all over an 8-1 game had turned into a 8-8 tie. It looked like the Royals were going to find yet another way to lose a ballgame.

Ken Harvey has had 40 at bats and is .225/.279/.350. Usually, it takes only 30 at bats to get sent down with those kind of numbers, but Super Ken does have a grand slam to his credit.

• The Star’s Jeffery Flanagan in his Top Of The Mornin' column (who, if you read this post, you know I’m not a fan) dropped another name to help the Royals. Aaron Guiel. Jeffrey, I don’t know if you are serious or not, but please stop. Really. It’s not funny.

But for all the negativity, there were some positives:

Ambiorix Burgos was nails. Coming into the game with the bases loaded and one out, he needed strikeouts and he got them. His stuff was just filthy nasty…Running fastballs at 95 mph and an out of this world splitter. In the end, he retires all eight batters he faced, striking out four and gets his first major league victory.

• The Royals didn’t seem to get too down about blowing a big lead. Everyone watching this game, me included, had to be thinking, “Here we go again.” I mean come on, we have a league-high 23 losses on the season and we just coughed up a seven run lead. The players probably were feeling a bit down, but I have to think Burgos working out of that bases loaded jam was a huge morale booster for a team desperately in need of some good things.

• The Royals took the lead when Steve Kline balked home the go-ahead run. Is it just me, or do you get some sort of perverse happiness when another team does something colossally stupid or inept that costs their team a chance for a win? Like LaTroy Hawkins bouncing a throw to first off the helmet of the runner, into the stands. I saw that on Friday and thought to myself, “That could have happened to the Royals.” Losing a game on a balk?!? I’m just angry the Royals didn’t think of it first.

Now it’s onto Toronto for three against the Jays and the chance to win two in a row for the second time this season.


At 9:34 AM, Anonymous Brett said...

Um, it was Steve Kline who balked in the go-ahead run. Doesn't Timlin play for the Red Sox?

I was at the game, and I have to say I was impressed with Burgos's amazing 2 2/3 innings performance and Teahen's defense. I was also impressed, in the other direction (depressed?), with the rest of the bullpen's performance (especially Cerda), and with some of Pena's decisions. Also, Gotay didn't look that good, but I'll attribute that to not expecting to play and just a bad day at the plate.

At 10:51 AM, Blogger Craig Brown said...

Whoops! I'll fire the fact checker! It's fixed now.

Teahen's defense has been something I've been meaning to write about. He's been looking really good since his return.


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