It’s been a frustrating week for the Royals, who have seen nothing go their way for six straight games. Earlier in the week, they were at least scoring early and building leads before blowing them. Evidently, they’ve now decided to skip the lead-building part and just lay down dead from the beginning of contests.
The White Sox beat the Royals, 3-0, on Friday night. It is the 11th time in the last 13 matchups that Chicago has defeated Kansas City. Kauffman Stadium looked awesome on Friday, too, making this a real shame. It was the biggest crowd at the K since September 2019. The uniforms were gold. The fans were loud. And... the team sucked.
Brad Keller was alright. He opened with four straight zeroes and then gave up two runs in the fifth and the sixth. He did a good job limiting the White Sox to just six baserunners, but he couldn’t get the critical outs towards the end of his outing. Chicago broke a scoreless tie with a homer by .211 hitter Zach Collins in the fifth, and they added two runs on RBI hits by Adam Eaton and Jose Abreu, two of the most notorious Royal-killers of the 2010s, in the sixth.
Keller: 6.0 innings, five hits, one walk, six strikeouts. The ERA dropped to... 7.31. He’s due for a bit more BABIP luck. Jake Brentz and Ervin Santana worked around a few jams in the last three innings to keep the game at 3-0.
Santana has been pretty good this year in mop-up duty, but I’d still like to see them get some of their top arms up here to get some bullpen innings. Guys like Jackson Kowar and Jonathan Bowlan could definitely get some work when you have the corpse of Wade Davis up here. I’m not sure why they called Kris Bubic up to be a mop-up guy, but if he’s going to be here, he might as well pitch as well.
As for the offense, there is absolutely nothing to highlight. The Royals were shut out for the second straight game, and their scoreless streak is at 22 straight. They got the first two guys in the ninth on thanks to a double and a catcher’s interference call, bringing the tying run to the plate, but Hunter Dozier and Ryan O’Hearn struck out. Michael A. Taylor singled to load the bases. Then up came Nicky Lopez, who predictably made weak contact and got out to end the game. There have been TWO no-hitters since the last time they scored a run (@BSGoodman on Twitter with the stat). They’re halfway to that incredible record they set back in 2017 when they went, like, five straight games without scoring!
I guess Sal Perez is something to highlight. He had four of the team’s eight hits. As a team, the Royals banged out six singles and one straw double, which wasn’t until the ninth inning. Nicky Lopez is on a 1-for-24, and he’s played every inning this season. Jorge Soler has 2 home runs in 105 at-bats this year. Hunter Dozier has gone cold again. Michael Taylor hasn’t gotten a hit of significance since the first series of the year. It’s pretty painful right now.
Also, as if Bally Sports hasn’t made enough bad decisions that have angered Royals fans over the last few weeks, they put Steve Physioc on the TV on Friday night. Is it just me, or does it seem like every single time the Royals are on a long losing streak, Physioc appears on TV? I feel like every game Physioc calls ends in a 3-0 Royals loss. Even when the Royals win a game he calls, we all still lose. This offseason, Bally Sports, you can add “stop giving Steve Physioc games to call” to your very long to-do list, right between “fix your streaming app” and “tell me how many home runs a player has when he hits one on the scorebug.”
The Royals are 16-15. They were seven games over .500, like, a week ago. Tomorrow, they’ll try to stay above .500 against notorious Royal-killer Lance Lynn. Perhaps Daniel Lynch, who will make his second big-league start, will be able to end the losing skid. First pitch is at 6:10 pm.