Jeffrey Flanagan checks in with Burch Smith after his first start with the Royals and his first start in the majors since 2013:
“He did a really good job with the balls to strikes ratio [71 pitches/52 strikes], was ahead in the count,” Royals manager Ned Yost said. “He was throwing strikes, which you wanted to see.”
Added Smith, “The plan was to get ahead and stay ahead. I think we did a pretty good job of executing that game plan. A couple of pitches I’d like back, a couple of curveballs that were a little too hittable. I also wish I could have gone deeper in the game so the bullpen didn’t have to cover so many innings. But fairly pleased with the way it went.”
At the Athletic (sub required), Rustin Dodd details Salvador Pérez’s toughest season as a Royal.
Grifol has sought to keep Pérez locked in with daily reminders and challenges. Sometimes they come during pregame workouts. Sometimes they come in the dugout during games. If you want to be great, the price is work, even when the cameras are off, even when the losses are piling up.
“(That is) one of the things that everybody should be thinking,” Pérez said. “That’s how we bring food to the table for our family. That’s our job. That’s my job.”
At Royals Farm Report, Alex Duvall tries to find historical precedent for what the Royals’ teenage prospects are doing this year.
Source: the Royals HAVE NOT made an offer for Machado. They are likely out of the running for him.— Shaun Newkirk (@Shauncore) July 11, 2018
BP KC’s David Lesky checks the less desirable trade chips for the Royals and tries to see if there might be somewhere for them to land:
What’s the market for a .195/.243/.275 hitter, who plays a below average shortstop and has some newfound versatility that isn’t actually a positive because he’s not good anywhere else? It’s exactly what you’d expect. If a team trades for Escobar, it’s because the GM is coming off a 72-hour bender and hallucinating.
At Kings of Kauffman, Tyler Dierking weighs in on a scout’s remarks on the Royals’ situation as they approach the trade deadline. He also thinks the Royals should shut down Ian Kennedy.
At Beyond the Boxscore, Patrick Brennan looks at how that Eric Hosmer contract is looking so far for San Diego:
Perhaps part of the risk seen in this was Hosmer’s lack of ability to make adjustments. In the era of home runs holding up offensive value, especially for first baseman, he has had a lot of trouble accessing that power with the gaudy ground ball rates he puts up. As a consequence, he has been a below-average hitting first baseman for his career.
The issues with Hosmer’s swing have reached an all-time high in his first season with San Diego.
At BP, Aaron Gleeman marvels at the lack of slugging first basemen in the American League.
At the Hardball Times, Dave Jordan breaks down Astroball and posits that a certain former Royal may have a bright future as a manager.
Papa John is in some deservedly hot water. (h/t to KnuckleballSandwich)
Why do cities keep putting highways along their waterfronts?
The Y: The Last Man series is starting to get cast.
Sascha Baron Cohen seems to have really angered Sarah Palin mere days before his new series premieres on Showtime.
The song of the day is “Play for Today” by The Cure: