It’s September, which means expanded rosters, right? Yay!
Unfortunately, you’re unlikely to get the full excitement of seeing the future of Kansas City Royals baseball. Raul Mondesi will only pry Alcides Escobar’s starting spot from his cold, dead hands. Hunter Dozier isn’t up yet (and may not be at all), and even if he is he’d be behind a half dozen guys on the depth chart. Kyle Zimmer is hurt. Bubba Starling is hurt. Cam Gallagher is a break-in-case-of-glass emergency catcher, the guy that allows Ned Yost to be more liberal with pinch hitting and pinch running.
The Royals are also in the midst of a ‘playoff chase.’ They come into tonight’s contest a mere 2.5 games out of the second Wild Card slot, and while they are probably dead men walking Ned Yost & company won’t play it that way. No; each game from now until, oh, ten days before the season ends will be a ‘must-win’ game.
Kansas City will therefore trot out a lineup that looks like all their other lineups. Mercifully, an actual professional pitcher, Jason Vargas, will pitch for them tonight. The Royals will go up against a Detroit Tigers team starting a dude with an ERA almost at seven, with a lineup lacking JD Martinez and featuring a below-average Miguel Cabrera for the first season ever.
It’s time to make up some ground. Let’s go blue.