Lineup Change May Be Looming

Rob Carr

Eighteen games of three runs or less has Ned Yost rethinking his lineup.

Ned Yost is pondering per the Kansas City Star. I get nervous when Ned ponders.

For a quick summary, I stole this from BHWick from the comments section of yesterday's Game Preview.

“I’m thinking about, maybe, putting Alex back in the three,” Yost acknowledged. “I’m just trying to decide what benefits us the best. I’ve got like nine different scenarios I’m looking at.

“I’m not big on changing the lineup from day to day. You’ve got to have some movable parts, but the least amount of movable parts, the better for me.”

(..)

Yost said he was still mulling possible replacements atop the lineup with Dyson, Cain and Alcides Escobar among the possibilities.

“Escobar led off all winter in Venezuela and did really well,” Yost said. “Put him there and Cain in the two? I don’t know. I’m thinking it through. I don’t want to do anything rash.”

Yost said he still views Billy Butler, who has batted third this season, as a better fit in the cleanup role. Shifting Gordon to third would permit Butler to return to fourth.

“I still believe when it all is said and done that (Eric) Hosmer is going to be a three hitter,” Yost said, “and that Moose (Mike Moustakas) is going to be a four or five hitter.

“It just takes time in the big leagues to get yourself established. You’re still projecting younger players who you think are going to be really productive — Sal (Perez), Moose, Hos and Cain. It just takes time.

“My son, Andrew, is a mechanic. He needs two years to take a bunch of classes to become a master mechanic. It’s the same. These kids need experience before they get there.

“That’s true for the majority of them. You’ve got a few that step up immediately — (Ryan) Braun, (Mike) Trout and (Bryce) Harper. But there are very few of those.”

In addition, as Retro pointed out in a Fanshot yesterday, the Royals' middle of the order is not exactly banging balls off or over any fences.

Dayton Moore's off-season banked on Mike Moustakas and Eric Hosmer becoming productive major league hitters and, to be totally accurate, banked on Eric Hosmer becoming a star. None of that has happened and the Royals struggle to consistently score runs because of it.

The Twins are likely a team most of us do not view as much of an offensive juggernaut, but they have been held to three runs or less in 11 of their 30 games. The Indians have been held to three or under in 16 of 31, while the White Sox have 16 games of three or less in 32 contests. The Tigers? 12 games in 31 in which they have been held to three runs or less.

The rest of the American League: Yankees (12 of 32), Red Sox (13 of 34), Rays (13 of 33), Rangers (14 of 34), Orioles (13 of 34), Mariners (25 of 35), Blue Jays (19 of 35), Athletics (15 of 35), Astros (20 of 34) and Angels (12 of 33).

The best thing about the Royals' offense this season? They're not the Mariners. The worst thing? They are roughly on the same pace as the Astros. Nothing should happen involving a team that is hoping to contend that puts them in the same sentence as the Houston Astros.

Re-arranging the deck chairs or making a change that will actually help? One cannot blame Ned Yost for giving the idea some consideration, I'm not sure that a ready solution actually exists.

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