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Tony Musings: Thoughts on the week that was

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Who wants their stream of consciousness?

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It was a week, that's for sure. Five consecutive losses for Kansas City certainly made the days pass by more heavily.

It wouldn't have been nearly so bad if the team had looked the least bit competitive. Riding a 26-inning scoreless streak is certainly deflating, and maybe it is important to remember that this has happened before. The worst stretch of last year was arguably September 4th thru the 19th; the Royals went 4-11 but saw their lead in the Central slip from thirteen games to eleven, due to some equally poor stretches from other teams.

And 12-11 feels worse than it is, because of the five straight losses. Had they traded games over the past month instead of nosediving at the end of April, it might have been seen as struggles that could be worked through.

Even still, during that moribund stretch the club still managed to produce some semblance of offense, including an eight-run game (in a loss) and a fourteen-run game in one of their four wins. And the real worry is that what has 'worked' for the last few years isn't working anymore. Alcides Escobar can't have an OPS of .515 and still lead off. The question now is whether or not the organization will adjust or keep trying to plug along.

  • The pitching has to improve as well. Kris Medlen's walk and strikeout rates are exactly the same (7.08). Yordano Ventura's command issues (5.48 BB/9) are also alarming.
  • A down game from Kennedy and Volquez should be expected every now and then; that they have now received zero quality starts since Ventura's outing last week, though not as troubling as the offensive issues, is still discouraging.
  • In the middle of this miasma of suck, Mike Moustakas is still hitting well. An interesting fact is that, looking at his BABIP, you may even see some room for improvement. At .217, his BABIP is sitting about .085 below the league average and .049 below his career BABIP of .266.
  • Eric Hosmer, on the other hand, has a BABIP of .382, so you wonder what his line will look like once it regresses. Hosmer remains a frustrating player to watch; though he is currently having success, it is easy to feel like he should be doing more with his profile. His career high for home runs is still the 19 he hit as a rookie.
  • Not that home runs are the measure of everything, but Hosmer's success has always been tempered by a belief that he should be better. His streaky hitting and fits of ground balls (62.9% this year, 52.2% career) have deflated his overall offensive production in his career (wRC+ of 110).
  • Wade Davis pitched an inning last night, giving up a hit and recording two strikeouts. He has yet to give up an earned run on the season. Along with Kelvin Herrera, they have combined to throw twenty innings of scoreless relief.
  • If the season ended today, Alcides Escobar's 38 wRC+ would be the worst offensive season by a Royals hitter (min. 100 PAs) since Elliot Johnson's 20 wRC+ in 2013. No player who had a worse season than Escobar's current one received more than 332 plate appearances in a season.
  • Escobar also has four errors on the season. His high with the Royals was 19 in 2012.
  • Paulo Orlando's slash line is .267/.267/.267.
  • At what point does Dillon Gee start over Kris Medlen?
  • Excluding his first appearance, Joakim Soria's ERA is 3.48. Too bad baseball doesn't work that way.
  • Sean Manaea made his first start with Oakland. It wasn't great. 5.0 IP 4 H 4 R 4 ER 4 BB 3 K