“Our offense was built more around singles and doubles,” Yost said, “but it’s difficult to get three or four singles in a row to score a run. We have to have the ability to open it up a little more, use the power that we have to take advantage of a quick strike.
“A walk, a base-hit and boom — there’s three runs. I think that’s the major difference in philosophy.”
Read more here: http://www.kansascity.com/2012/10/04/3847710/royals-fire-hitting-coach-kevin.html#storylink=cpy
These were the comments that one Frank Yost made at the press conference where it was announced that the Royals would not be bringing back Kevin Seitzer as the Royals hitting coach. Yost explained that he felt the Royals needed to stop trying to "hit up the middle", the philosophy that Seitzer teaches and utilized during his big league career. Rather Yost wanted to see the Royals hit more Home Runs. The only caveat that you have to have the horses to hit home runs, and it wouldn't hurt to have a hitter friendly park.
That all sounds good in practice, but the real reason we all know Seitzer was fired is because Hosmer and Moustakas weren't hitting like the Royals wanted them to.
Hosmer hit .242/.304/.359 last year with 14 home runs and 60 RBI's. Clearly not what you want from a high prospect corner infielder.
Moustakas hit .242/.296/.412 last year with 20 home runs and 73 RBI's. Pretty much the same story.
The Royals as a team in the first 40 games last year hit .258/.315/.394 with 28 HR's and 150 RBI's. Included in this was a 13 game losing streak. Their record for the first 40 games last year was 16-24.
In 2012 the Royals ranked 13th in HR's, 8th in OBP, 10th in SLG, and 12th in Runs/Game in the AL.
So Seitzer was fired. The Royals hired two hitting coaches from within to replace him. They had a full offseason to fix Hosmer and Moustakas right?
Well so far to date; Hosmer is hitting .252/.329/.326 with 1 home runs and 12 RBI's.
And Moustakas? Well he's hitting an abysmal .178/.252/.311 with 4 home runs and 10 RBI's.
The Royals as a team you ask, they're hitting .264/.316/.389. Higher average than last season, less power. So far this year they have 26 HR's and 167 RBI's. Less home runs than last year to this point as well.
The Royals are dead last in the AL in home runs with 26. 5 teams in the AL have double the home runs we do. We are 10th in Runs/Game and OBP, and 12th in SLG.
So what's the difference you ask. Why do all of our hitting stats look the same but we have a different hitting coach. The difference, we have James Shields, Ervin Santana, and Jeremy Guthrie starting 60% of our games instead of Jonathan Sanchez, Luke Hochevar, and Bruce Chen.
Honestly, I think all signs point to the fact that Seitzer was in fact the scapegoat that we thought he was, and that Hosmer and Moose are gonna need a lot more help that we all thought. I don't have the answer to what that is. From the untrained eye, I notice Hosmer has a massive hole in his swing on away pitches and his balance is way off. Moose has been dipping his backside a lot and tends to pop up dang near everything, that is if he doesn't strike out. Either they're both stubborn and resistant to changing their swing, or they've tried and they can't kick old habits. Either way we're in for a long season if our corner infielders are hitting a combined .200 with no power.
Hopefully they can figure it out, but if you want to know the answer, it's that, yes, we do need to hit more home runs. However we don't need to TRY and hit more home runs. We need to try and be better hitters, we need to be more patient at the plate, see more pitches, foul off more balls, and through all of this more hits will come, and yes more home runs. If you TRY and hit home runs, you pop up a lot, and you end up having an adverse effect. That's why we have less home runs than this point last year. That's why despite a better record, our offense hasn't got any better.
Dayton Moore did a superb job reworking the pitching staff this offseason, but his complete ignoring of the offense in the form of refusing to get a RF to replace Frenchy and a second baseman to improve over Getz has caused this offense to be atrocious. You could handle a slumping Moose and Hosmer if you had everyone else hitting well, but to date we have too many holes in the lineup and it's forcing Butler and Gordon to not see any good pitches.
Something is going to give, either the hitters improve or the record goes in to free fall. Time shall tell, hopefully for us fans, it's the former over the latter.