Friday, July 21, 2006

Back in the action

Today marks exactly one month since the last post. I can't even really remember what what going on with the Royals during the last post. The Royale's (the 'e' was intentional) have played well since the hiring of new GM Dayton Moore. The team went something like 16-12 leading up to the all-star break and have gone 2-6 since. However, those losses were to the Tigers and Red Sox in Detroit and Boston. The Royals were swept by the Sawx, losing two straight games one nill. The last time Boston won two straight games 1-0 at home, Babe Ruth was one of the winning pitchers. In those two games the Royals squandered good pitching by Brandon Duckworth and Luke Hudson.

Let's see, Aaron Guiel was picked up by the Yankee's a couple of weeks ago. In his first game in a Yankee's uniform he went something like 2-4 with three runs scored and a walk. Good for him.

I don't know, the team is still very, very bad. I would like to see a Florida Marlins-esque fire sale and get rid of everyone over the age of 26. Maybe keep a Graffanino and Grudseilanek (or however in the hell you spell that) around for some veteran presence. What are they going to do, lose 100 games?

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

The Dayton Moore Era Has Officially Begun

Yesterday brought the official start of the Dayton Moore era as the Royals' newly acquired GM made his first trade. Kansas City brings in Tampa Bay speedster Joey Gathright and infielder Fernando Cortez for lefty JP Howell. If anyone other than a Royals' fan reads about the trade it will appear to be two mediocre fringe players for one (with some potential). However, Royals' fans would, to a man, disagree. How many soft throwing left handed pitchers does one team really need? We've still got Gobble and Redman, but for a while there you could add Darrell May into that mix. I think we're still OK on that front. Joey Gathright, while hitting right around .200 with the Rays this year, is quite possibly the fastest guy in baseball. The addition of a true speed threat (the first since Tom Goodwin, maybe?) cannot hurt this club. It has been said that Gathright will join the club today (Wednesday) and play center field. The Jesus is not a bad center fielder but move him to left and get Emil Brown out of the outfield and you have immediately improved you defense - a lot. Gathright, while not hitting this year in the Majors, did hit a somewhate respectable .275 last year. If this guy can bring a bat to the ballpark each night he will make a very nice leadoff hitter. I'm not sure about his plate disclipline, but nobody else the Royals run out there each night will take a walk (other than Matty Stairs or some of the other veterans - on occasion) so we really wouldn't lose anything there even if he doesn't walk. Maybe he's a number nine hitter. When he does get on base he's there (in scoring position because he singled and stole second) for the top of the order. I'm intrigued to see what this does to the lineup and the overall feel of the team.

On a related note, this does mean we've got an extra outfielder now. Hey, does anybody need a bat to help with a playoff run? Reggie Sanders, get your Reggie Sanders here! I know the Yankee's are rumored to be interested due to the injury to Gary Sheffield. I'm sure Dayton Moore could find somebody the Yankees have in their system for Sanders.

Apparently the Ryan Freel to KC rumors are alive in Cincy too. We'll see how that works out. Take care Royals' fans. Don't lose hope.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

A Different Look

Well there are all sorts of "different looks" since my last post. Personally, I got married June 3rd, headed off to sunny Florida for about week and had all four wisdom teeth removed yesterday, the day we returned - hence the reason for the lack of posts.

As for the Royals' I didn't pay a whole lot of attention other than the occasional USA today articles or whaterver I could catch on Sportscenter or BBTN. Speaking of USA today, the paper did a story on Luke Hochevar and another on Dayton Moore. I was very surprised to two entire articles devoted to the worst team in baseball in a national newspaper. However, I did keep up on the team enough to remember some of the more important moves.

The boys' in blue went 1-3 in the four game set in Seattle June 2-5, then 1-2 against the Rangers June 6-8 and 1-2 against the D Rays June 9-11. The team then headed back to the west coast to start a 6 game road trip against Anaheim and Houston, losing the first game to the Angels last night 4-3.

As for the "different looks" for the Royals, obviously new GM Dayton Moore heads up that list. Following closly on his heels would have to be the starting rotation. The rotation, as I see it, now consists of Ellarton, Redman, Keppel, new acquired Brandon Duckworth and Mike Wood. I'm pretty okay with that rotation seeing as how three of the guys could be a part of the future. The Royals also acquired reliever Todd Wellemeyer from the Marlins.

On an interesting note, the Royals turned the first triple play in club history since the 1995 season. It was an odd play and I don't feel like describing it when you can read about it or watch it at:

I'll work on making that a decent hyperlink when I remember my html. As for now if you can't figure out how to copy and paste the above then I don't know how you found this.

Friday, June 02, 2006

A New Era

Well, quite a lot has transpired since the last post here at Royals' Dish. After snapping the 13 game losing streak in New York, the boys' in blue managed to lose their next two outings in the Bronx. However, with a team as bad as the Royals currently are, taking even one of three in New York isn't that bad. The team then made the short trip to Oakland and promptly took two of three from the struggling A's. The last game of the series the Royals were shutout, however they did confirm the Dayton Moore rumors.

The Allard Baird era is now over and the organization welcomes the former Brave's assistant GM Dayton Moore. Everything I've read about this indicates it was a great move. 810 WHB midday guy Soren Petro interviewed Mr. Moore Wednesday and asked whether the rumors that he had requested total autonomy when it comes to baseball moves. He gave the political answer but it sure sounded like he was going to be solely responsible for player personnel changes. This can't be bad new for the Royals.

More good news on the Royals front. Zachary Greinke will make a rehad start this evening with the Wranglers. Hopefully, this means he's close to returning to the big league team. Let's see, with him back and the plethora of pitching moves the Royals have made of late - see Runelvys Hernandez and Joe Nelson back to Omaha, the trade for Seth Etherton (who won one of the aforementioned games in Oakland) and Affeldt back to the 'pen - the rotation is going to look very different. Maybe something along the lines of Elarton, Greinke, Bobby Keppel, Redman and Etherton. At least three of those guys might figure into the teams' future plans.

Don't think it's just pitching that the good guys are mixing up. Both "The Jesus" and Costa are back (which sent Gueil back to Omaha) and Reggie Sanders is back in the lineup after being slowed by an injury. Blanco is here and German is still seeing way too much time on the bench.

All sorts of potentially good stuff.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

The Streak Is Over

Well, the Royals ended their 13 game losing streak with a victory at soggy Yankee stadium in The Bronx, New York last night. The win also ended a 14 game losing streak at "The House that Ruth Built".
The Game
The boys in blue started their scoring efforts in the second with a leadoff homer from Reggie Sanders. After a Matt Stairs strike out and an Emil Brown groudout, Tony Graffanino singled and stole second. Then, the craziest play I've seen in years took place. ANGEL BERROA walked!! Then, after a Paul Bako walk, Shane Costa ripped a single to right fielder Bernie Williams scoring Graff and Berroa. Note Berroa scored easily because Bernie is 73 years old now and cannot throw.

The Yankee's plated their first run in the fourth on an RBI single by A-Rod and followed that up by a three run sixth that was keyed by a two run double courtesy of Giambi. The third run of the inning came off the bat of the next hitter, A-Rod who single in Giambi.

The Royals tied it up in the next half inning after a Graff single, Berroa sac bunt and Bako single. That's a manufactured run folks. Then the Royals took the lead for good on a three run shot by Berroa in the eigth.

A near two hour rain delay after 8 1/2 wasn't enough to cool off the KC squad. The Yankees threatened (a lot) in the ninth but Sisco got Giambi to ground into a double play to end the game. That coming after Joe Nelson gave up one and left with first and third with only one out.
Berroa had a good game with the game winning dinger, a WALK and a quality sac bunt that tied it up.
Apparently the KC Star is reporting the GM job has been offered to Braves' assistant Dayton Moore. I don't know a lot about this fella, but I'm sure he's learned something while working for former Royals GM John Sherholz (sp?). I don't think a new GM is going to make that much difference, it's going to take an owner that is willing to open his (or her) wallet and spend some money. We'll see where this takes the team as they work to slow down the losing and avoid the '62 Mets.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Baker's dozen

This has got to be one of the worst, demoralizing losses of the season. I listened to the first two innings on the radio this afternoon and was shocked to hear the back-to-back-to-back shots by Graffanino, Berroa and Minks. Not exactly murderer's row. I'm sure everyone has heard that the Royals jumped out to a 6-0 lead after the first. Tiger's starter Mike Maroth lasted only seven batters. However, in the top of the second Denny Bautista managed to walk two and hit a batter with a couple of singles mixed in to bring the score to 6-3. There was a Berroa error mixed in there too. A Marcus Thames two run homer in the fourth made it 6-5. Bautista lasted just 3 and 2/3 after giving up 5 runs (4 earned).

Recently called up from Omaha, Bobby Keppel jogs in and pitches well, giving up one earned run in 3 and 1/3 and striking out 4. I was in Omaha about a month ago and watched Keppel pitch something like 7 innings of shutout, two-hit baseball against the Memphis Redbirds. Esteban German hit home run number one in the bottom of the fourth to give the Royals a 2 run lead. The Royals added another run in the 6th to make it 8-5. However, it wouldn't last.

The Tigers scored three in the eighth with two coming on a triple by Pudge. Tied up. Then in the ninth our new found closer Elmer comes in and gives up back-to-back jacks to Craig Monroe and Thames (his second of the game). Pudge then blased a three run shot to make to 13-8. Game over.

I'm a big fan of Denny Matthews and Ryan Lefebvre on the radio. A couple of things about yesterday's game regarding these two guys. Denny made a comment yesterday (I think when Dessens came out) that the 'Tompkin's Call To The Bullpen' was the best value in radio advertising! I about crashed my truck. However, after the game I could just hear the losses building up in his voice. He's been doing this a long time and he's certainly seen better Royals' ballclubs. I don't know how he (and Ryan) don't jump out of the press box when things like this happen.

Donuts for this dozen?

How about a dozen. Hits? Nope, 12 straight losses for the Kansas City nine.

The Royals managed to lose yet another game to the Tigers Wednesday evening. The home team's only offense came in the sixth via a three run blast by Matt Stairs. However, the Tigers' offense was propelled by "slugger" Omar Infante who managed to hit his first two round-trippers of the year. The first was off starter Yimmy Yobble who pitched four innings (he was on a 60 pitch limit) and allowed just that one run.

But leave it to the bullpen to save the day. Wood gave up a two run dinger to Brandon Inge in the fifth and then two more runs were plated in the sixth. Then who comes in? How about recently recalled Leo Nunez out of the 'pen. The Royals' official website has a story on Nunez that lists him at 169 pounds. Nunez is 169 lbs just like Berroa is 28 years old. Nope.
Well, Infante launched his second of the game (and season) off Nunez and that was that.

I didn't see Reggie Sanders get thrown out in the eighth with the Royals down by three but I sure heard about it. I will ask anybody reading this to tell me how moving one run into scoring position can directly lead to three runs. He was "trying to get something going" he says. Well, he managed to contribute (along with every other player that took the field) to keeping something going. 12.

Wednesday, May 24, 2006

11 Straight...Again

People keep asking me about the Royals and all I can think to say is "they're terrible". Now I keep thinking that "they're terrible" just doesn't cut it. This team cannot be described as terrible anymore. I would imagine that every person outside of KC - and many within - that is not a Royals fan is hoping that this team loses every game the rest of the season and finishes 10-152. We all know that isn't going to happen but the team does need to snap out of this skid to prove it. I relate what other fans think of this team to a good team and winning. People in New York get upset when the Yankees lose. Now people all around the country get upset when the Royals win.

The bats somewhat came alive in last nights 8-5 loss to the Tigers. Four homers were a nice surprise, especially the first two of the season by Gruds. However, as this team can always seem to find a new way to lose a game, our "best" reliever comes in to attempt a four out save with the good guys leading 5-3. The Tigers promplty rallied and by the end of the eighth the Royals trailed 7-5. Another run in the top of the ninth and "that's all she wrote". 8-5 and the second 11 game losing streak of this still young season.