Here’s what we knew entering the game: the Royals offense is bad, and Cole Hamels is good.
We didn’t learn anything new.
The Rangers beat the Royals, 6-2, to extend a brutal stretch for the offense. In their last 51 innings, the Royals have scored six runs. That’s right - Texas scored more runs tonight than Kansas City has in the last week.
The Royals entered Friday night having scored 4 runs in 42 innings dating back to last Saturday. After Saturday’s inspiring effort, you could say that this team is still mired in a deep slump.
Things began encouraging enough for the Royals. Two batters into the game, they took a 1-0 lead. Alex Gordon was hit by a pitch to leadoff the game, and Lorenzo Cain hit a double into the right-center gap to score him.
After a groundout by Eric Hosmer, Cain stood at third with one out. You had a feeling that would be a big moment in the game. The Royals were facing Cole Hamels, who doesn’t give up many runs. Kansas City needed to take advantage of every loophole it was given, and predictably, it stranded Cain at third.
Texas then went all home run derby on Nate Karns, who was blasted for six runs in 4.2 innings. He only allowed five hits, but four of those left the park. Robinson Chirinos and Joey Gallo both hit two home runs. One of the balls Gallo hit out was marked as the farthest homer hit in the majors this year. It did not go well.
Karns’ ERA is up to 6.35. It’s the worst outing for a Royals starting pitcher this year, which isn’t saying much at this point, considering how good they’ve been.
In the seventh, Whit Merrifield hit a triple, the Royals’ first of the year. Outcedies Outscobar then swung at a God awful pitch and grounded out softly. They didn’t score Merrifield. I then turned the TV off.
Of course, it’s not like Ned Yost’s lineups are helping any. Because the Royals were facing a left-handed starter, Yost decided to sit Mike Moustakas, yet Eric Hosmer played and actually went up in the batting order. This makes no sense. Why is Moutakas still not considered “matchup proof”, yet the $200 million man plays every day? Moustakas is the better player, and it’s not really that close right now.
Anybody who follows me on Twitter knows exactly what I think about Eric Hosmer. I think, for the most part, he is mediocre and a big disappointment after the huge expectations we had for him in 2011. But there’s no doubt about this: if Eric Hosmer doesn’t start hitting, this Royals team is going nowhere.
I don’t know what else the problem is. Since signing his big contract, Alex Gordon is hitting .217/.307/.364. Five of the team’s nine Opening Day hitters (Gordon, Hosmer, Brandon Moss, Paulo Orlando, and Raul Mondesi) are hitting under .200 three full weeks into the season. They just can’t hit the ball.
Also: Jorge Bonifacio made his MLB debut tonight. He drove two balls near the warning track, but he went hitless. He looked pretty comfortable for it being his first game. Kansas City fans should be excited to see what he can bring.
In farm news, Jorge Soler hit a three-run bomb in the first game of his Omaha rehab assignment tonight. He’ll probably be back at some point next week. It can’t come soon enough.
The Royals are 7-9. They have lost six straight games in Arlington. Tomorrow, they’ll look to get on the board in the series when Ian Kennedy takes the hill. He will oppose A.J. “Pedro Martinez” Griffin, because every starter that pitches against the Royals looks like Cy Young. I don’t even care that that joke isn’t original. It’s true.