Earlier in the season, Hokius and I engaged in this exercise for one of the many, many, many, many, many, many, many, many... ...many, many, many games blown by the bullpen this year. I’ve edited it slightly, but, if you’ve forgotten, here’s Part 1 of our 2019 Mad Libs, now with the title “The Bullpen Blows”.
Today, the Royals jumped out to a (runs) lead in the (number) inning. (Starting pitcher) wasn’t exactly unhittable, but he was good enough to keep them in the game. The surprising Royals offense was led by (insert unlikely offensive hero).
However, the bullpen was not up to the task, yet again. (Insert gas can reliever) gave up (number of too many runs) runs and took the loss. It was a team effort as (insert other crappy relievers) also contributed to the team’s downfall. The Royals record falls to a woeful (record) with (sad number) of those losses coming at the hands of the bullpen. Tomorrow, the Royals face (optimistic opponent) as they try to (banal baseball cliche for hope).
Today’s poetic masterpiece, part 2 in our series, is called “The Starter Sucks”. The game didn’t entirely follow the template, but we’re going to unveil this literary gem anyway:
“After (author of pathetic starting attempt) was lit up, (unexpected bullpen star) threw (surprisingly high number) of scoreless innings in a futile effort to control the damage. The (synonym for anemic) Royals offense never got the team in the game. However, (Royal with HR <10) hit a predictably useless home run to make the game look closer than it was.
(Opponent made to look like the 1927 Yankees) were paced by (opponent player who hit like Babe Ruth) who (did Babe Ruth things).
The Royals record falls to a woeful (record) as (bad starting pitcher) takes loss number (high number) on the season. Tomorrow, the Royals face (optimistic opponent) as they try to (banal baseball cliche for hope).”
Lamentably Thankfully Actually, Homer Bailey didn’t pitch poorly enough to have the Mad Lib apply to him today. He got touched up in the first inning, giving up singles to Mike Trout, Brian Goodwin, and Andrelton Simmons to load the bases. They would come around to score on an Albert Pujols double and Tommy La Stella RBI ground out. California Anaheim Disney Presents the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim would add another run in the third and it seemed like it was obvious which Mad Lib I would have to write today. However, Bailey would end up going 6 innings and allowing “just” the 4 runs.
For the Angels, reclamation project and man-who-still-sees-Eric-Hosmer-in-his-nightmares, Matt Harvey gave up only 2 hits across 7 innings. And, unlike yesterday’s small strike zone and slow pace, it was getaway day for home plate umpire Chad Whitson, too, so the zone was big and the game moved quickly in the cold weather.
The Royals cut the lead to 4-2 in the 8th and had 2 runners on. But Ryan O’Hearn and Jorge Soler couldn’t get the runs home. Justin Bour then hit a 3-run homer in the top of the 9th to put the game out of reach. There was some odd stuff in the 9th and the Royals picked up a run on an overturned challenge. But the game never really felt in doubt and the final score was more academic: 7-3.
Honestly, this game could have been featured in Mad Lib Part 3, “The Offensive Offense”. But I’m sure we’ll have more chances to write that one later this season, too.
The Royals dropped to 9-19 and, tomorrow, the Rays visit the Royals to start a 4 game series.