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Royals Rumblings - News for June 16, 2021

Are Royals hitters pressing?

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MLB: Detroit Tigers at Kansas City Royals Peter Aiken-USA TODAY Sports

Royals Rumblings - News for June 16, 2021

Whit Merrifield says some hitters may be pressing, writes Lynn Worthy.

“It’s just a matter of guys mentally getting over that barrier, and there’s a lot of aspects to it.” Merrifield said on Tuesday night. “There’s the aspect of us losing in this stretch that we’ve been losing. There’s an aspect of us not hitting with runners in scoring position. Then there’s that aspect of guys not really getting off to a great start this year.

“So guys are pressing about that. Guys are pressing about hitting with guys on base. And guys are pressing about us losing. It’s tough. It’s tough to overcome. You’ve just mentally got to push that aside and just attack every at-bat and attack every pitch and compete within yourself and the pitcher and see what happens.”

David Lesky at Inside the Crown also writes that they are pressing.

These are just two at bats in these situations, but the players are aware of how long it’s been that they’ve been struggling. They’re human beings and they’re absolutely pressing.

Put these three things together in whatever order you want to, and it’s easy to see why they’re struggling so badly. The bad luck will turn. When the bad luck turns, the pressing will likely stop. The problem is the middle point. Until this lineup gets healthy, they will continue to be bad, which might negate the rest, but at least we aren’t likely to see 1 for 14 again any time soon.

Adalberto Mondesi was activated from the Injured List with Ronald Bolaños landing on the list with a flexor strain.

“Yesterday was the first day I saw him really move where it looked like Mondi,” Matheny said before the roster move. “That’s exciting news for us. Quick first steps watching him run where he didn’t look like it was favoring at all.”

Craig Brown at Into the Fountains notes that Jorge Soler is starting to warm up.

In 26 games in the month of May, Soler had 10 games where he struck out multiple times. Overall for the month he had 33 strikeouts (a 32.3 percent rate) and seven walks (a 6.9 percent rate). Flip the calendar to June and in 10 games he has yet to whiff multiple times in a game. In fact, he’s drawn more walks (six for a 14.3 percent rate) than strikeouts (five for an 11.9 percent rate)!

Since that time, he’s raised his OBP by 24 points and his slugging 29 points.

Mike Matheny has some concerns about the new protocols to clamp down on foreign substances, writes Anne Rogers.

“I just wish we had some better options. Something that would be an ‘and’ proposition,” Matheny said. “We’re understanding that guys have trouble gripping the ball, and that’s advantageous for throwing strikes, which is advantageous for pace of play, while also trying to limit where guys have gone too far with it. It just seems like we need to find that happy medium.”

Alec Lewis talks to Asa Lacy about mid-season adjustments.

Fastball command was the issue. It continued to be in the second start. Lacy walked six batters in 1 2/3 in his first home game. So many minor movements impact command, but Lacy pinpointed two: His head couldn’t stay stationary during his release, and his glove side was not “quiet,” he says, referencing his ability to cleanly move through his delivery.

“Usually when I do those two things,” Lacy says, “good things tend to happen. I’ve just got to do that a lot more consistently like I was in college and at the alternate site. That time off developed a few bad habits. Now I’m just grinding through it and getting back to doing what I do.”

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