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Thursday, July 22, 2004

Vacation 

I'm off to Wyoming for a week-long camping trip. My next post here will be on Monday, August 2nd. While I'm gone, enjoy these memories of Royals games past:

July 24, 1973—All-Star Game at Royals Stadium. 40,849 see the NL win, 7-1. Amos Otis and John Mayberry get 3 of the AL’s 5 hits. Box Score.
July 24, 1975—Royals fire manager Jack McKeon, hiring Whitey Herzog.
July 24, 1983—The infamous “Pine Tar Game.” Box Score.

July 25, 1990—George Brett hits for the cycle and the Royals beat Blue Jays 6-1. Box Score.
July 25, 2001—In a 3-team deal, Royals trade Jermaine Dye to the A’s and get Neifi Perez from Colorado.

July 26, 1980—The Royals set single-game attendance record with 41,860. The Yankees beat the Royals, 5-4, with homers by Reggie Jackson, Bob Watson, and Ruppert Jones. Box Score.

July 27, 1983—Gaylord Perry gets his first win as a Royal, and his 3,500th career strikeout, in a 5-4 win vs. Cleveland. Box Score.

July 28, 1996—Darryl Strawberry gets his 300th home run, off Jason Jacome, in a 3-2 Yankee victory. Box Score.
July 28, 2003—The Royals trade Jeremy Hill to the Mets for Graeme Lloyd.

July 29, 1995—The Royals get 21 singles before Jon Nunnally hits a home run in the 16th for a 5-4 win vs. Detroit. Box Score.

July 31, 1972—The Royals beat Nolan Ryan and the Angels 1-0 on a steal of home by Amos Otis. This is only the 2nd game since WWII in which the only run scored on a steal of home. Box Score.
July 31, 1999—The Royals trade Kevin Appier to the A’s in a 4-player deal.
July 31, 2003—The Royals purchase Al Levine’s contract from Tampa Bay.

Aug. 1, 1993—Ewing Kauffman dies

// posted by Harley @ 9:44 AM

*#%&^ Gophers! 

Tigers 4, Royals 2: Darrell May threw a complete game, but allowed 4 runs on 8 hits, including 3 home runs. David DeJesus led the offense with a 3-hit night, and Desi Relaford chipped in with a solo home run. Dee Brown struck out with two men on base to end the game in the top of the 9th. Box Score.

Jimmy Gobble faces Gary Knotts this afternoon in a 12:05 game, carried by RSTN.

Shawn Camp was added to the roster yesterday, filling the spot vacated by Justin Huisman. Camp hopes he’s back to stay this time. Joe Randa took batting and fielding practice on the field before last night’s game.

Denny Matthews walks a fine line between calling the game and keeping his bosses happy.
Chris Lubanski’s minor league journal has been updated.
Former Kansas City Monarch Sam Allen was honored by his hometown of Norfolk, Virginia and by Buck O’Neill on Tuesday.

On the Farm:
On Tuesday, Mark Teahen went 1 for 4 with a solo home run. He’s hitting .260 for Omaha.
For Burlington, Chris Lubanski went 1 for 3 with 3 walks. He’s hitting .259 on the season, .328 for July.
In Idaho Falls, Brian McFall went 2 for 3 with a home run, 4 RBI, and 2 walks. He’s hitting .315.
Billy Butler went 1 for 3 and walked twice, bringing his average up to .324.

This Date in Royals History:
July 22, 1979—George Brett gets 3 home runs and 5 RBI in a 7-6 Royals win over the Rangers. Box Score.
July 22, 1993—Greg Gagne hits the 10,000th home run in Tiger Stadium history as KC wins, 12-6. Box Score.

Royals Trivia (Answer will be in comments)
What Royals player is 31 years old today? He was drafted by the Royals in 1991, from the same part of the country as George Brett. He ranks 13th among active players in batting average, and 27th in on-base percentage. He has only 44 career stolen bases, but he once stole home in a game. And in 1999 he tied an American League record by getting an RBI in 13 straight games.

// posted by Harley @ 9:10 AM

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Greinke Shelled 

Orioles 12, Royals 3: First the good news: we got 19 baserunners, 10 different Royals got a hit, and Ryan Bukvich threw a perfect 9th inning, striking out 2. And the bad news: Zack Greinke had the worst outing of his life, giving up 8 runs on 9 hits, including 4 home runs, in 2 innings. Dennys Reyes was only a little better, allowing 3 runs over the next 4 innings. The Royals stranded 15 baserunners on the day. Box Score.

Darrell May faces Mike Maroth tonight in Detroit. The 6:05 game will be on RSTN.

Justin Huisman was sent to Omaha after yesterday’s game. No word yet on who will fill his roster spot, though Shawn Camp and D.J. Carrasco are likely candidates. Is it wrong to root for it being Denny Bautista?
Colt Griffin is hoping to follow Mike MacDougal and Jeremy Affeldt in being a wild-starter-turned-reliever.
Jaime Cerda has emerged as the bullpen’s lefty specialist. He’s one of the few Royals having a good year.
John Buck is climbing back up to the Mendoza Line.
Angel Berroa just can’t bring himself to take a pitch.
George Brett talks about George Brett in this mlb.com video interview.
Former KC Monarch Alfred "Slick" Surratt's health has taken a turn for the worse.

On the Farm:
On Monday for Wilmington, Mike Aviles went 2 for 4 with an RBI. He’s hitting .293.
Shane Costa went 2 for 4 with a double and is hitting .317.
For Burlington, Chris Lubanski went 2 for 2 with a double, 3 walks, and a stolen base. He’s now hitting .258.
Billy Butler went 2 for 4 for Idaho Falls, where he’s hitting .324.

This Date in Royals History:
July 21, 1992—Rookie Hipolito Pichardo throws a one-hitter and KC beats Boston 8-0. Box Score.
July 21, 1992—The Royals trade Mark Davis to Atlanta for Juan Berenguer.

// posted by Harley @ 9:24 AM

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

Buck Cashes In 

Orioles 7, Royals 4: Brian Anderson lost his 9th straight start, setting a team record, despite having his best outing in nearly two months. The Royals took the lead early, giving Anderson a chance to pitch with the lead for the first time since May 16. But Baltimore came up with 3 runs in the 4th and 3 more in the 7th and KC couldn’t match that. Ken Harvey and John Buck both hit solo home runs. Box Score.

Zack Greinke starts against Daniel Cabrera at 1:10 this afternoon in the final game of the year against the Orioles.

Joe Randa is set to rejoin the lineup this weekend. Juan Gonzalez, not so much.
Ken Harvey is ready to start hitting again, after having his average drop from .379 to .296.
Mediocrity is good enough to compete in the AL Central, which makes the Royals’ terrible year even worse.
Are Royals pitchers afraid to use the beanball?
The August 14th game has been added to RSTN’s schedule.

Milestones:
Tony Graffanino’s 10 stolen bases this season are a career high.
John Buck hit his first career home run last night, and collected his first career RBI.
Rudy Seanez recorded his 300th career strikeout.
Last night was Mike Sweeney’s 1,000th career game. He becomes the 7th player in history to play 1,000 games with the Royals. The current top 10:
1. George Brett – 2707
2. Frank White -- 2324
3. Amos Otis -- 1891
4. Hal McRae – 1837
5. Willie Wilson -- 1787
6. Freddie Patek – 1245
7. Mike Sweeney – 1000
8. Joe Randa – 959
9. John Mayberry – 897
10. Mike MacFarlane – 890

On the Farm:
On Sunday, Chris Lubanski went 2 for 4 with a double and a triple for the Bees. He’s hitting .253.
For Idaho Falls, Billy Butler went 1 for 2 with a double, an RBI, and 2 walks. He’s hitting .317.

This Date in Royals History:
July 20, 2003—The Royals beat the Mariners, 7-5, in 10 innings, on a Carlos Beltran home run. Jason Grimsley is ejected in the top of the 10th for beaning Ichiro Suzuki on the foot, despite the fact that it is clearly unintentional. Box Score.

// posted by Harley @ 8:54 AM

Monday, July 19, 2004

3 Out of 4 Ain't Bad 

Twins 4, Royals 1: Johan Santana allowed just one hit in 8 innings Saturday, striking out 9 Royals. Jimmy Gobble allowed 4 runs on 5 hits, including 2 home runs, and took the loss. Angel Berroa’s double was the only hit of the game. Box Score.

Royals 4, Twins 3: Dee Brown came up with a bases-loaded single in the 10th inning to break a 3-3 tie and win the game for KC. With a 3-1 lead, Matt Stairs lost a fly ball in the lights, resulting in a Jose Offerman triple and a tie game. Tony Graffanino broke up a double play in the 10th to keep the inning alive. Two walks later, Brown came through. Dennys Reyes threw a scoreless 10th inning to get the win. Box Score.

Brian Anderson pitches against Sidney Ponson tonight at Kaufmann Stadium. The 7:10 game will be on RSTN.

Aaron Guiel was activated from the DL on Saturday, and sent to AA-Wichita. Mike MacDougal has been cleared to pitch for Omaha after sitting out two weeks with a sore elbow. Ruben Mateo is still day-to-day with his groin strain.
David Glass warns that there may be more players traded this season.

After winning last night’s game, Dee Brown was fined $450 for conducting a pre-game interview in the dugout while his teammates were warming up.
Baseball’s two worst pitching staffs face off with Baltimore in town this week.
Joe Posnanski examines the “curse of Juntos Podemos.”
Over the all-star break, the Royals sent out letters to season-ticket holders, urging them to come out to the park to see the team’s young stars.

On the Farm:
On Saturday, Byron Gettis went 2 for 4 with a walk and 3 RBI for Omaha. He’s hitting .261.
Mark Teahen went 2 for 3 with a double, a walk, and an RBI, raising his average to .274.
For Wilmington, Shane Costa went 2 for 4 with a double and an RBI and is hitting .315.
Ambiorix Burgos had a good night for Burlington. He went 6 innings, allowing 1 run on 5 hits, walking 1 and striking out 8. His ERA stands at 4.82.
For Arizona, Miguel Vega went 2 for 5 with a homer and 2 RBI and is hitting .298.

On Friday, Calvin Pickering went 1 for 4 with a solo home run. He’s now hitting .330 with 29 homers on the year.
For the Blue Rocks, Mike Aviles went 2 for 3 with an RBI and is hitting .294.
Donnie Murphy went 2 for 4 with a double, a homer, and 2 RBI. He’s hitting .315.
In Idaho Falls, 1st-round draft pick Matt Campbell had a rough start to his pro career. He went just 2 innings, allowing 5 runs on 2 hits and 4 walks, striking out 2. His ERA stands at 22.50.

This Date in Royals History:
July 19, 1991—The Royals suffer their worst loss in franchise history, to the Tigers, 17-0. Box Score.

// posted by Harley @ 9:28 AM

Saturday, July 17, 2004

Yesterday's Title, Take Two 

Royals 12, Twins 3: The avenging of the shutout-sweep continued last night with the Royals assuring themselves of at least a series split this time around. Dee Brown had a grand slam and a career-high 5 RBI on the day. David DeJesus hit his first big league homer, and the Royals batted around in the 3rd and 4th innings. Darrell May threw 7 solid innings for the win, improving his record to 7-9. Box Score.

Jimmy Gobble matches up with Johan Santana in today’s 12:15 game, slated for broadcast on FOX. A win would give the Royals their longest winning streak of the season.

In Arizona, Juan Gonzalez went 2 for 4 with 2 doubles on Thursday. He’s hitting .286 after 5 games of rehab.
Ryan Bukvich is off to a great start.
Dee Brown has a new attitude that is helping him stay relaxed.

Dennys Reyes had a long, strange trip back to KC after the All-Star Break.
J.C. Hartman, Monarchs teammate of Satchel Paige, spoke at the All-Star Game’s FanFest.

On the Farm:
On Thursday, left fielder Shane Costa went 4 for 4 with a double and 2 RBI for Wilmington. He’s hitting .314.
Second baseman Donnie Murphy went 5 for 7 in the double-header, with 2 doubles, a triple, and 3 RBI. He’s now batting .286.
Third baseman Billy Butler continues to tear up Pioneer League pitching. He went 2 for 4 with a double, a walk, and 2 RBI and is hitting .319.
Luis Cota threw 3 innings for Idaho Falls. He allowed 1 run on 3 hits and a walk, striking out 3. His ERA dropped to 4.15.
In Arizona, first baseman Miguel Vega went 2 for 5 and is hitting .291.

Milestones:
Ruben Mateo recorded his 200th career hit in last night's game.
Dee Brown's grand slam gave him 75 career RBI.
Mike Sweeney moved past 1100 career hits.

This Date in Royals History:
July 17, 1978—The Royals complete a 3-game sweep of the Yankees, winning 9-7 in 11 innings. Reggie Jackson ignores Bill Martin’s instructions and pops out on a bunt attempt in the 10th. Jackson gets a 5-day suspension without pay for the incident. Box Score.
July 17, 1978—Royals fan Harley Winfrey is born in Brookfield, Missouri.
July 17, 1986—Mike Ferraro replaces Dick Howser as manager of the Royals. Howser is undergoing treatment for a brain tumor.

Enjoy the weekend! My next post will be on Monday.

// posted by Harley @ 9:57 AM

Friday, July 16, 2004

Undefeated After the All-Star Break! 

Royals 3, Twins 1: Zack Greinke got his 2nd win after pitching 7 strong innings, allowing one run on 4 hits and a walk, striking out 4. Mike Sweeney had a three-hit night, and his RBI single in the first was the first run scored by the Royals against the Twins since May 30. The KC bullpen used Scott Sullivan, Jaime Cerda, Nate Field, Dennys Reyes, and Ryan Bukvich to get the final 6 outs. Bukvich got his first career save. Box Score.

Darrell May pitches against Brad Radke in tonight’s contest. It’ll have the usual 7:10 start and be on RSTN.

Joe Randa should be back in the lineup by next weekend. Brian Anderson will return to the rotation with a new, more compact delivery. It certainly can’t hurt.
Twins blogger Batgirl on last night’s game. She suggests the “buddy” system for Kyle Lohse. If you’re not reading Batgirl regularly, do yourself a favor and start today.
Boy, is Dick Kaegel glad that’s over. Now Tony Pena and the Royals are starting over.
The Pittsburg Morning Sun looks back on the first half of the season with Al Fitzmorris, Marty Pattin, and John Wathan.
Former Kansas City Monarch Doc Hern has accused the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum of mistreating him. The Museum insists it’s a misunderstanding.

On the Farm:
The only notable performance on Wednesday was Billy Butler’s for Arizona. He went 3 for 5, droved in 2 runs, and drew a walk. The #1 draft pick is hitting .311.

This Date in Royals History:
July 16, 1969—Ellie Rodriguez becomes the first Royal selected to the All-Star Game.

// posted by Harley @ 9:09 AM

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Will Stairs be the Next to Go? 

Zack Greinke will lead the Royals in avenging last week’s shutout sweep by the Twins. The 4-game series opens with a 7:10 start tonight, on RSTN.

Royals Notes: Don’t expect the All-Star Game to return to KC any time soon, the Giants are reportedly interested in Matt Stairs, and George Brett’s mother, Ethel, passes away at age 80.
MLB.com’s Midterm Report on the Royals predicts the team will avoid losing 100 games.
Jaime Cerda has been unexpectedly effective this year.
Zack Greinke finished 2nd in AL ROY voting in Baseball Prospectus’ Mid-season Awards.
Tony Pena is--you guessed it--still positive, despite the disappointments of this season.
Mike MacDougal is out with a sore elbow in Omaha. Again.

On the Farm:
At the PCL All-Star Break, Calvin Pickering leads the league in OBP, SLG, and home runs.
On Tuesday, Andres Blanco went 2 for 4 with a double, an RBI, and a walk for Wichita. He’s hitting .278.
Colt Griffin’s beginner’s luck in the bullpen ran out. He didn’t record an out, but allowed 2 runs on a hit and 2 walks. His ERA jumped up to 4.05.
For Idaho Falls, Brian McFall went 2 for 4 with a homer and 4 RBI. He’s hitting .318.

// posted by Harley @ 8:47 AM

Wednesday, July 14, 2004

All-Star Broke 

Friday--Royals 7, Orioles 0: KC ended its record-breaking 32-inning scoring drought with Mike Sweeney returning to the lineup. Sweeney drove in 4 runs on 3 hits and sparked the end to the scoreless streak in the 6th inning. Darrell May threw a 5-hit shutout, giving him a team-leading 6 wins at the All-Star Break. Box Score.

Saturday--Orioles 7, Royals 2: Baltimore rookie Daniel Cabrera was dominant, and the Royals couldn’t get on the board until the 9th inning, when Mike Sweeney homered. Mike Wood allowed 5 runs on 7 hits in 4 2/3 innings for the loss. Box Score.

Sunday--Royals 11, Orioles 7: Mike Sweeney homered twice as the Royals scored 11 runs for the first time since April 20th. The Royals won the series, but hit the All-Star Break with the fewest wins and lowest winning percentage in franchise history. Jimmy Gobble threw 6 strong innings for the win. Box Score

Rob & Rany at the All-Star Break.
Ken Harvey was a bit overwhelmed at the All-Star Game, and he struck out in his only at-bat.
Rany Jazayerli sees Zack Greinke as the team’s true all-star.

Mike Sweeney and David DeJesus both seem to be healthy again, and Aaron Guiel has returned to Omaha for rehab. Meanwhile, Dee Brown had some trouble with dehydration in Sunday’s game, and Jeremy Affeldt’s condition is improving.
Juan Gonzalez went 0 for 3 with a strikeout for the Arizona Royals on Saturday.
On Friday, the Royals sold Mendy Lopez’s contract to the Samsung Lions of Korea. They also purchased the contract of Shreveport starting pitcher Thad Markray. Markray will be assigned to Wichita. In 82 2/3 innings of work this year, he has allowed 75 hits, 26 walks, and struck out 87.
Brian Anderson will get another shot at the rotation next Monday, replacing Dennys Reyes. Again.

Desi Relaford and Tony Graffanino on becoming the first Royals to score in 32 innings.
Judd Choate on the KC farm system. Andres Blanco and Ruben Gotay played in the All-Star Futures game on Sunday.
Tony Pena’s Dominican Republic was well represented at the All-Star Game.
Jeff Passan remembers Dick Howser.

Will this season be the worst in franchise history? The KC Star runs down the 10 worst moments in the first half of 2004 to help you decide.
How do the Royals compare to the Bengals, Clippers, and NY Rangers? Are we just playing for a first round draft pick now?
Carlos Beltran somehow made it into the All-Star Game.
Powder Blue T-Shirt night is back on Saturday.

Juan Gonzalez gets Jayson Stark’s award for AL Least Valuable Player at the All-Star Break.
McSweeney’s Internet Tendency has awarded Zack Greinke their “Oakland A’s Award” for 2nd-half breakout potential:
The kid might not have the strikeout numbers like last year’s rookie sleeper, Donatrello, but his ERA is right around 3.00, with very few walks. That usually translates into fantasy pitching success (see “Wells, David” or “Glavine, Tom”). One downside is that he’s pitching for the Royals, who have been described as “hapless,” “hopeless,” “a wacky bunch of misfits,” and “foolish nincompoops” in overheard conversations.
(Intended to be humorous)

And the real question for the Royals during the All-Star Break is, who would be their representative in the Attitude Derby? I’d probably nominate Tony Graffanino.

On the Farm:
On Monday, Ruben Gotay went 2 for 3 with an RBI and is hitting .301 for Wichita.
Denny Bautista got his 2nd Texas League win, throwing a complete game. He allowed 1 earned run on 5 hits and 2 walks, and struck out 9. His ERA is 1.61.
Devon Lowery got his 6th win of the year for Wilmington, going 5 1/3 innings and allowing 1 run on 5 hits and a walk, striking out 6.

On Sunday, Gotay went 0 for 1 with a walk and a strikeout in the Futures Game. Andres Blanco walked and scored in his only plate appearance.
Calvin Pickering went 3 for 5 for Omaha with 2 homers, 2 RBI, and a walk. He’s now hitting .332 with 28 homers on the year.
Mark Teahen went 3 for 6 with a double and an RBI, raising his average to .275.
For Burlington, Chris Lubanski went 2 for 4 and is hitting .245.

On Saturday, Teahen went 2 for 4 with a homer and 2 RBI for Omaha.
Colt Griffin got his first save of the year for Wichita. He threw 1 2/3 scoreless innings, allowing a hit and striking out 4 (!) His ERA as a reliever is 1.35 after 6 2/3 IP.
For Wilmington, Shane Costa went 2 for 4 with a homer and 2 RBI and is hitting .304.
Brian McFall went 1 for 3 for Idaho Falls with a homer, 3 RBI, and 2 walks. He’s hitting .313.
Luis Cota allowed 1 run on 5 hits, striking out 3 in 5 innings. His ERA is now 4.50.

On Friday, Blanco went 2 for 5 with a walk for Wichita. He’s hitting .276.
For Wilmington, Costa went 2 for 3 with a walk and a stolen base. He’s hitting .300.
Donnie Murphy went 2 for 3, driving in 2 runs and raising his average to .283.
Mitch Maier went 2 for 4 for Burlington and ends his Midwest League season with a .300 average. He was promoted to Wilmington on Saturday morning.
Billy Butler went 2 for 5 with a double and 2 RBI for Idaho Falls, where he’s batting .316.

On Thursday, Byron Gettis went 3 for 4 with a walk for Omaha. He’s hitting .278.
Mike Aviles went 3 for 5 for Wilmington, with a double and 2 RBI. He’s hitting .300.
For Burlington, Lubanski went 2 for 5 with a double and is hitting .248.
Maier went 3 for 4 with an RBI and a stolen base.
Miguel Vega homered, had a stolen base, and drove in 3 runs for Arizona, where he’s hitting .322.

This Date in Royals History:
July 14, 1970—Amos Otis becomes the first Royal to play in an All-Star Game.
July 14, 2002—Raul Ibanez gets a grand slam and a 3-run home run, tying the club RBI record with 7. Royals 12, Angels 3. Box Score.

// posted by Harley @ 10:40 AM

Friday, July 09, 2004

We Wanna Run 

Darrell May pitches against Erik Bedard tonight in Baltimore. The 6:35 game will be on RSTN. KC needs to score by the 4th inning in order to avoid breaking the franchise record for consecutive innings without scoring.

Ken Harvey doesn’t believe in slumps, even if he’s in one.
Jeff Flanagan is tired of seeing those “Together We Can” ads.
Anyone else wondering what’s going on with Juan Gonzalez? Here I will refrain from saying “I told you so.”
Hitting coach Jeff Pentland is trying not to panic.
And Mike Sweeney is trying to keep his sense of humor.
Patrick Reusse, of the Minneapolis Star-Tribune, reflects on his preseason prediction of a 1st-place finish for the Royals.
Twins blogger Batgirl has an interesting theory on the story behind Dennys Reyes’s name. Just call me Jimmy John’s Harley.
And Twins Geek has an entertaining play-by-play of Wednesday night’s game.

On the Farm:
Back in Omaha, Byron Gettis went 3 for 5 with a double on Wednesday. He’s hitting .265.
For Wichita, 2nd baseman Ruben Gotay went 2 for 4 with 3 RBI and is hitting .297.
Colt Griffin made his second Texas League relief appearance. This time he threw a perfect inning, striking out one and dropping his ERA to 1.80.
For Wilmington, left-fielder Shane Costa went 2 for 5 with a double, raising his average to .295.
Second baseman Donnie Murphy went 2 for 5 with a home run and 3 RBI. He’s batting .281.
Third baseman Mitch Maier went 2 for 4 with an RBI and a walk for Burlington. He’s hitting .291.
In Idaho Falls, Billy Butler continues to impress. He went 2 for 4 with a double, 3 RBI, and a walk and is batting at a .333 clip.

This Date in Royals History:
July 9, 1971—Freddie Patek hits for the cycle and the Royals beat the Twins, 6-3. Box Score.
July 9, 1997—Bob Boone is replaced as manager with Tony Muser.
July 9, 2000—Astros 9, Royals 6. Jose Lima gets the win, ending a 13-game losing streak for Houston. Mike Sweeney, Johnny Damon, and Joe Randa homer for the Royals. Box Score.

I'll be out of town for a few days. Next post will be on Wednesday.

// posted by Harley @ 9:04 AM

Thursday, July 08, 2004

Worst. Series. Ever. 

Twins 12, Royals 0: Kyle Lohse gave Minnesota a team record 3rd straight complete game shutout as Minnesota pounded Dennys Reyes for 6 runs on 6 hits in just one inning pitched. Reyes left the game without recording an out in the 2nd inning. Justin Huisman didn’t fare much better, allowing 3 runs on 3 hits in 2 2/3 innings. KC managed only 6 hits on the game, but 3 of them were Dee Brown singles. Brown now has the 2nd highest batting average in the current starting lineup. Box Score.

The ugly stats:
*The Royals have never before been shut out for 3 straight games.
*Their current scoreless streak is 27 innings, with the team record set at 30 2/3 in 1981.
*The Royals have now lost 8 straight and 13 of the last 14 games.
*Over the past 2 weeks, they have been swept 3 times.
*During that time, they have been outscored 103-30.
*The Royals have scored just 1 run in their last 37 innings.
*The KC bullpen hasn’t had a save situation since June 29th.

We head to Baltimore this weekend for the final series before the All-Star Break.

Mike Sweeney’s back spasms returned after batting practice last night. He hopes to be in the lineup on Friday. Juan Gonzalez began his rehab assignment in Arizona. And Aaron Guiel will be re-examined by an eye doctor today.
It’s been a whirlwind for Mark Teahen since he heard Peter Gammons mention his name on ESPN, in connection with Carlos Beltran trade rumors.
The Star has its latest Royals Farm Report up.
John Buck turned 24 yesterday. He celebrated by continuing to learn to handle the KC pitching staff.
WHB radio is still excited to be broadcasting Royals games.

Black Table has a mid-season MLB report card. From its section on the Royals:
It's really a shame, because had certain idiotic prognosticators' preseason views come true (including mine), the long-suffering loyal fans of the Royals might have finally broken through… It fell fast and hard, and now the Royals have traded Beltran and are currently embalming Gonzalez and Stairs, and don't look to have much hope around the corner. The Royals were this year's Howard Dean internet bubble, and we all now feel really stupid for getting caught up in the hullabaloo. Sorry. Grade: D-

On the Farm:
On Tuesday, Byron Gettis went 2 for 4 with a stolen base for Omaha. He’s hitting .254.
For Wichita, Denny Bautista got his first Texas League win, throwing 7 scoreless innings. He allowed 6 hits, 2 walks, and struck out 9 and his ERA is now 1.89.
Shane Costa went 2 for 4 for Wilmington, raising his average to .293.

Royals Trivia: (answer will be in comments tomorrow)
What former Royals player made his major league debut 25 years ago today? A key member of the 80’s Royals, he also played a season and a half with our cross-state rivals. Like George Brett, he was a southern California native and a good fielder—he posted a career range factor of 3.11, compared to a league average of 1.84 for his position. He was a three-time All-Star and played in 18 post-season games.

// posted by Harley @ 8:48 AM

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

One Year Old 

Twins 4, Royals 0: Johan Santana pitched his first career complete game shutout and the Royals were blanked for the second night in a row. The loss gives KC a season-worst 7-game losing streak. Zack Greinke again suffered from a lack of run support, and allowed 4 runs on 5 hits and 3 walks, striking out 5. Tony Pena reportedly gave an animated post-game lecture in the clubhouse. Box Score.

Tonight it’s Dennys Reyes against Kyle Lohse in a 7:10 RSTN game.

David DeJesus sat out last night’s game after aggravating his bruised hand in his final at-bat Monday night.
But bad news for DeJesus is good news for Ruben Mateo.
Joe Posnanski has Zack Greinke on his All-Star Team, instead of Ken Harvey.

Milestones:
Desi Relaford's stolen base last night was the 75th of his career.
John Buck had his 25th career at-bat.

On the Farm:
On Monday, Alexis Gomez went 2 for 4 for Omaha, raising his average to .235.
For Wichita, Andres Blanco went 2 for 3 with 2 doubles, 2 RBI, and a walk. He’s hitting .275.
Mike Tonis went 2 for 4 with 2 RBI and is hitting .239.
For Wilmington, Mike Aviles went 2 for 5 with a double and a walk. He’s hitting .300.
Shane Costa went 2 for 4 with a double and 2 walks. He’s hitting .289.
Mitch Maier went 3 for 4 with a walk and a stolen base for Burlington, raising his average to .286.
Billy Butler continues to hit well for the Chukars. He went 4 for 5 with a double and a triple, driving in 2 runs. His average stands at .339.
For Arizona, Miguel Vega went 2 for 4 with 2 homers and 4 RBI. He’s hitting .360 and has 5 homers on the season.

State of the Blog:
It’s now been one year since I began this website. As you can see from the archives, not much has changed in the day-to-day content. My intent was to create a single site where Royals fans could go to get all of the news of the day on their favorite team. With 2,500 visits to this page in the past month, I think I’ve at least partially done so. While the content hasn’t changed much, some other details have. I briefly experimented with having a co-blogger (and I’d be willing to do so again if anyone is interested) and I have added advertisements. I’ve also added quite a bit of material to the sidebar, particularly the stats, quotes, and photos sections, as well as a ton of links. And I’ve added the scrolling message at the bottom of your browser, of course!

Maybe you don’t like some of these changes, or maybe there’s more changes you’d like to see? Please let me know either via email or in the comments. I’ve continued to update the site mainly for my own enjoyment, but I’ll listen to reason. For now, I plan to continue plugging away—not even another 100-loss season will rid you of me.

// posted by Harley @ 9:11 AM

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Another Lost Weekend 

Saturday--Padres 5, Royals 4: KC was no-hit through the first 7 innings by Adam Eaton but managed to tie the game in the top of the 8th. Recent acquisitions Ruben Mateo and Jose Bautista both had RBIs. Scott Sullivan took the loss after allowing the winning run in the bottom of the 8th. Box Score.

Sunday--Padres 7, Royals 1: San Diego completed the sweep, despite losing Phil Nevin and David Wells to injuries during the game. Ken Harvey’s solo home run in the 9th was the only Royals run of the game. Mike Wood went just 5 innings, allowing 3 earned runs on 7 hits and 4 walks, striking out 6. Box Score.

Monday--Twins 9, Royals 0: Brad Radke threw a complete game, 4-hitter to give the Royals their 6th straight loss and worst record in franchise history after 80 games. Jimmy Gobble was roughed up for 6 runs on 9 hits in 4 1/3 innings. He walked one and struck out two. Box Score

KC tries to avoid a season-worst 7-game losing streak tonight as Zack Greinke takes the mound against Johan Santana and the Twins. The 7:10 game can be seen on RSTN.

Ken Harvey will be the lone Royals player at the All-Star Game this year. Mike Sweeney and Benito Santiago both finished 7th in fan voting for their positions. Harvey finished 2nd in player voting for first basemen. And who knows what’s going on for Carlos Beltran, who finished 8th among all AL players.
David DeJesus was back in the lineup Monday after missing two games with a bruised hand. Mike Sweeney is expected to be out for at least the rest of the Minnesota series.
So… that leaves Ruben Mateo batting cleanup?

The Royals signed draft picks Matt Campbell and J.P. Howell yesterday.
Kevin Appier has announced his “temporary retirement”—he’s calling it quits until he gets healthy again… Or maybe he just wants to hone his knuckleball in secrecy?
Aaron Guiel, now in Omaha, hopes to rejoin the team by the end of the month.
Ryan Bukvich is experimenting with a lower arm slot.
Jose Bautista has made a big jump to the big leagues.
Bradford Doolittle suggests the Royals could learn a little from Moneyball.

On the Farm:
On Sunday, Calvin Pickering went 2 for 3 with his 26th homer of the year. He’s hitting .332 for Omaha. If we’re not going to bring this guy up, why not trade him for a pitcher or two?
Mark Teahen went 4 for 4 with a triple, a homer, and 3 RBI. He’s hitting .259.
For Wichita, Ruben Gotay went 3 for 4 with a double, an RBI, and 2 walks, raising his average to .297.
Chad Santos went 2 for 5 with a double and a walk and is hitting .268.
Colt Griffin threw a scoreless inning, striking out 1. He has yet to allow a run as a reliever for the Wranglers.
Mike Aviles went 2 for 4 for the Blue Rocks and is hitting .298.
For Burlington, Mitch Maier went 2 for 4 with a double, an RBI, and 2 stolen bases. He’s hitting .279.
For Idaho Falls, Billy Butler went 3 for 5 with a double and 2 RBI, raising his average to .296.
Brian McFall went 3 for 4 with 2 RBI, raising his average to .345.

On Saturday, Andres Blanco went 2 for 4 with a triple for Wichita. He’s hitting .270.
For Wilmington, Mike Aviles went 3 for 4 with 2 doubles and a stolen base.
Dusty Hughes got his 2nd Carolina League win, going 7 innings and allowing 2 runs on 8 hits and a walk. He struck out 2 and dropped his ERA to 2.59.
In Idaho Falls, Brian McFall went 2 for 4 with a double and a homer.
In Arizona, Miguel Vega went 2 for 5 with a homer and 3 RBI. He’s hitting .372.

On Friday, Gotay went 3 for 6 with 2 RBI for Wichita.
Blanco went 2 for 4 with an RBI and a walk.
Mike Tonis went 4 for 5 with 3 doubles and 3 RBI, raising his average to .237.
For Wilmington, Shane Costa went 2 for 3 with an RBI and a stolen base. He’s hitting .290.
Dwight Lowery threw 7 scoreless innings for his 3rd win of the year. He allowed 3 hits and a walk and struck out 4. His ERA stands at 3.90.
For Burlington, Kali Kaaihue went 2 for 4 with an RBI and is hitting .252.
Chris Lubanski went 1 for 3 and hit his 8th homer of the year, drove in 2 runs and walked once. He’s hitting .245.
In Arizona, Vega went 2 for 4 with a double.
Joshua Johnson went 1 for 3 with a double, a walk, and an RBI. He’s batting .242.

Milestones:
Ken Harvey got his 100th career RBI on Sunday.
Dee Brown got career hit #150 on Saturday.
Monday night was Jimmy Gobble's 25th career game.

// posted by Harley @ 11:55 AM

Saturday, July 03, 2004

Too Little, Too Late 

Padres 7, Royals 5: The Royals were held to just 3 hits until the 9th inning, when they scored 4 runs, but still came up short. Ken Harvey and Matt Stairs both homered in the game, but San Diego managed 5 dingers. Angel Berroa stole 2 bases, and Nate Field pitched a scoreless 7th inning, Scott Sullivan a perfect 8th. From Thursday’s game into last night’s game, opposing pitchers retired 26 Royals in a row. Box Score.

Darrell May gets the start tonight against Adam Eaton. The 8:05 game will be on RSTN. A loss would give May a league-leading 10 losses, while a win would give him a team-leading 6 wins.

KC picked up outfielder Ruben Mateo from the Pirates in exchange for cash yesterday. The former Rangers prospect becomes the 47th player to be on the Royals roster before the All-Star Break, an MLB record. Byron Gettis will head to Omaha to make roster room.
Mike Sweeney missed last night’s game with back spasms. He’s expected to miss 1 or 2 games. In other news, Brian Anderson will be returning to the bullpen after two poor starts.
Sweeney and Ken Harvey are the leading candidates to represent the Royals at the All-Star game in Houston.

Milestones:
Dennys Reyes notched his 400th career strikeout last night.
Alberto Castillo got his 75th career RBI.

On the Farm:
Alexis Gomez went 3 for 4 on Thursday for Omaha. He’s hitting .233.
For Wichita, first baseman Chad Santos went 2 for 6 with a home run and 3 RBI. He’s batting .267.
Denny Bautista had another strong showing, allowing 2 earned runs on 3 hits and 2 walks in 6 2/3 IP, striking out 8. His ERA is 3.00.
Left-fielder Shane Costa went 3 for 3 with a walk and a run scored for Wilmington, raising his average to .285.
For Burlington, center-fielder Chris Lubanski went 2 for 5 with a double and is hitting .244.
Third-baseman Mitch Maier went 2 for 5 with a double and an RBI. He’s hitting .279.

This Date in Royals History:
July 3, 1987—Dick Howser Day—Howser is inducted into Royals HOF, and his number is retired
July 3, 1998—Jose Rosado only allows 2 hits, but both are Manny Ramirez home runs, and Cleveland wins, 2-1. Box Score.

Enjoy the holiday! I'll be back on Tuesday.

// posted by Harley @ 8:57 AM

Friday, July 02, 2004

No Run Support for Greinke... Again 

Orioles 3, Royals 2: Zack Grienke threw 6 shutout innings, but then allowed 3 runs in the 7th, and that was all Baltimore needed. KC got 2 runs on 4 hits in the first inning, and then were blanked for the rest of the game. Royals batters struck out 7 times and received zero walks. Box Score.

Dennys Reyes starts against Jake Peavy in San Diego tonight. The 8:05 game will be on RSTN. Peavy has been on the disabled list since May 27.

Rob & Rany have lost all hope. But they’re still talking—about Dee Brown and Mike Wood.
Juan Gonzalez will rejoin the club for workouts in San Diego. Aaron Guiel will move up to Omaha on his rehab assignment.
The Royals have used an MLB-record-tying 46 players so far this season, leaving some fans to wonder, who are these guys? This article stars Jeff Passan as Butch Cassidy and John Buck as The Sundance Kid.
Dick Kaegel reports that KC might not have any more trades in them.
Guy Hansen is Jeff Flanagan’s #1 candidate for the KC pitching coach job.
David Glass still has full confidence in Tony Pena and Allard Baird.

On the Farm:
On Wednesday, Andres Blance went 4 for 8 in a double-header for Wichita, raising his average to .268.
Ruben Gotay went 3 for 4 and is now hitting .294.
Carlos Santos went 3 for 4, drove in two runs, and hit his 12th homer of the year. He’s batting .266.
Jimmy Serrano threw 6 no-hit innings for his 2nd Wichita win. He struck out 6 and walked 2 and is sporting a 0.59 ERA.
For Burlington, Chris Lubanski went 2 for 3 with a double and two walks, raising his average to .241. He also made a diving catch to preserve Coughlin’s perfect game.
For Idaho Falls, Brian McFall went 3 for 6 with a double and 2 RBI. He’s hitting .333.

This Date in Royals History:
July 2, 1987—Jim Eisenreich homers for the first time since 1982, and the Royals beat the Twins, 10-3. Box Score.
July 2, 1993—Royals Stadium is officially renamed Kauffman Stadium.

// posted by Harley @ 9:00 AM

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Cumberland Canned 

Orioles 13, Royals 4: Every Baltimore starter scored as Brian Anderson struggled early in the game and KC never recovered. Anderson allowed 5 runs in the first inning and another 3 in the 3rd and left without recording an out in the 3rd inning. The Royals drew 7 walks but managed only 5 hits. David DeJesus had a 2 RBI night. Box Score

Zack Greinke goes for his 2nd career victory tonight--and the team tries for a series split--against Rodrigo Lopez and the Orioles in a 7:10 game.

Pitching coach John Cumberland was fired yesterday. Roving pitching instructor Mike Mason will serve as interim pitching coach. Anybody think this will make much of a difference?
Baseball Prospectus’ Prospectus Triple Play takes a look at Zack Greinke, and compares him to such 20-year old control phenoms as Bret Saberhagen, Bert Blyleven, Daffy Dean, Chief Bender, and -gulp- Walter Johnson.
John Buck was relieved to get his first hit on Tuesday night.
Now that Carlos Beltran has been traded, Allard Baird and Kansas City fans won’t have to worry about a franchise player leaving for free agency until 2007, when Jeremy Affeldt will become eligible.
Joe Posnanski has a hallucination of Bud Selig. …shudder…

On the Farm:
Chris Coughlin threw a perfect game for the Burlington Bees Wednesday night, against the Beloit Snappers. It was the 2nd perfect game in franchise history and the first 9-inning perfecto. It was only the 4th in Midwest League history.
On Tuesday, Mark Teahen got his first hit for Omaha, going 2 for 4 to raise his average to .154.
First-round draft pick Billy Butler went 2 for 3 for Idaho Falls, raising his average to .278.
Brian McFall collected his 2nd homer of the year, going 1 for 2 with 2 RBI. He’s hitting .333.

This Date in Royals History:
July 1, 1975—John Mayberry homers three times off Ferguson Jenkins in a 5-4 loss to the Rangers. Box Score.
July 1, 1984—Paul Splitorff announces his retirement.

// posted by Harley @ 9:33 AM