The Royals, waking up on the anniversary of the LSD no hitter (thanks Royal Rumblings), find themselves two-point-zero games behind the division leading Detroit Tigers. Alex Gordon seems to have found something recently and is smashing home runs. Mike Moustakas is on a 4 game hitting streak and has pulled himself out of the doldrums of negative contributions and into the shack known as replacement level. Lorenzo Cain is BABIP'ing himself to a 118 wRC+.
But then, Billy Butler and Eric Hosmer are hitting poorly, and Hosmer leads the team in plate appearances. James Shields has perhaps lost a step in his past few starts, and we're constantly expecting the regression bat to swat both Jason Vargas and Jeremy Guthrie. Aaron Crow's strikeout rate is in its fourth straight year of decline.
There are clear positive contributors, and there are clear negative contributors. It would appear that at this moment, right now, as you read these words, the good slightly outweighs the bad. But we're at a tipping point. A slight push in either direction could mean the difference between respectability and irrelevance.
Or, they'll receive no pushes and just continue their balancing act to Be .500.
Speaking of mediocre teams, the United States Men's Soccer Team is participating in the World Cup in Brazil. Action stats today, although the U.S. doesn't play until Monday against Ghana. Here's a good brief summary of and schedule of games with TV listings. Complete World Cup coverage is available at SB Nation here. The Opening Ceremonies were insane and terrifying.
Your World Cup Questions
1) If you had to choose between, say, existing in the current universe, in which the Marvel cinematic universe is a thing, and existing in a parallel universe in which the Marvel cinematic universe is not a thing, which would you choose?
2) Orange Is The New Black season 2 was just put on Netflix. If you were put in jail for a petty crime, what would it be?
3) Purple or Yellow?
4) Who ya got for the World Cup?
Italy is the shape of a boot that is about to kick Sicily into Africa. Goal or miss?