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Royals Beat Mariners Late, Mysteries Abound

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The Royals hit singles, walls, well.

The Royals are now 25-23 under Ned Yost, and 6-2 in extra inning games this season. I don't really know which of those numbers is more remarkable. The Yost thing is just.. well, "weird" is a poor word, but what do you got? I'd give him more credit if I could figure out what he was doing differently from Hillman. Strategically he's not hugely different, and if anything, his lineups have been worse (Guillen playing the field, Kendall hitting second, etc.). Sure, there was interleague play under Yost, but the Royals weren't particularly great against the NL (8-10).

Then again, the Royals had their infamous 18-11 stretch last season under Hillman, which is probably about as likely as going 25-23 (worse record, longer period). I don't know. Again, you tell me what's really changed. I'll listen.

The outlines of the mystery can be seen in tonight's game. Tejeda was pretty bad in the 8th inning, yet managed to escape. Then the Royals handed the ball to Farnsworth in the 9th, and he worked a 1-2-3 inning. Did anyone expect that? And don't talk to me about Yost giving the guys roles, because Farnsworth's role on the Royals hasn't including pitching a tie game in the 9th in two years. Then, in the 10th, with two outs and no one on, Mitch Maier triples. He then scores on a Betancourt single. Yay for MITCH. Too bad Yost has buried Mitch for the last two weeks for... no apparent reason. I just have a hard time giving Yost credit for a Maier+Yuni rally, or for Farnsworth slamming the door in the 9th, or for Tejeda allowing (seemingly) a zillion base runners in the 8th but escaping.

This gets, a bit, at the Royals goofy record in extra inning games. Yea, we've got a good closer, but as we all know, that is less a help in today's extra inning games than it probably should be. Look at tonight. Yost saved Soria until the Royals had a lead. Kansas City's success in extra inning games is even odder given that the Royals aren't good in 1-run games, or haven't been, at least, posting a 12-17 record.

I don't get it.