Just saw Ned Yost's lineup as the Royals prepare to unleash hell on Cleveland and complete a three game sweep.
Alex Gordon - LF
Alcides Escobar - SS
Lorenzo Cain - RF
Billy Butler - DH
Mike Moustakas - 3B
Brayan Pena - C
Eric Hosmer - 1B
Chris Getz - 4
Jarrod Dyson - CF
That's as close as we will ever get to a "set" lineup in 2012. By my cursory glance at past Royal lineups, Yosty has never fielded the same starting nine (or eight in the NL parks) in three consecutive games. The only switch is giving Sal Perez a break and replacing him with Pena.
Perez aside, I like this lineup. Mainly for the omissions.
As the Royals have struggled to plate runs, we've continually pointed out the drag created by force feeding the bats of Jeff Francoeur and Yuniesky Betancourt. Those two are brutal. They aren't in Mike Jacobs/Miguel Olivo/Jose Guillen territory for me, but they are one bacon-wrapped baseball away from it.
So as the Royals go for their third win and a row and a temporary reprieve from the Central cellar, I stand in my office and applaud Yosty. He's finally doing the right thing. It's too late, and there are still a ton of issues with the roster but I can live with this.
It's a credit to the awfulness of The Yunigma that I'm happy to see Getz in the lineup. That, and he's actually been the best choice given all the options this season. Seems like an extension waiting to happen. Whatever. That top five looks good. I'm pleased.
A couple of days ago, I wrote it was the job of the manager to put his players into a position to succeed. It appears given the personnel on the 25 man roster, Yosty has finally - 102 games into the season - found a successful formula.
Because Francoeur and Betancourt aren't staying out of that lineup forever.