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Royals Rumblings - News for June 17, 2022

The Royals haven’t lost in two days!

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MLB: Kansas City Royals at San Francisco Giants
Kansas City Royals third baseman Nicky Lopez (8) makes a catch as he collides with catcher MJ Melendez (1) on a foul ball hit by San Francisco Giants shortstop Brandon Crawford (not pictured) in the eighth inning at Oracle Park.
D. Ross Cameron-USA TODAY Sports

Royals Rumblings - News for June 17, 2022

In case you missed it, Lynn Worthy profiled how Jake Junis left the Royals and found success in San Francisco.

“When I signed over here, they basically said we have a plan for you,” Junis said. “We think the way you throw, your delivery, it’s going to be beneficial for you to throw two seams and obviously your slider is your slider.” Junis said the Giants have shelved the cutter he added towards the end of his time with the Royals.

But they added a pitch he couldn’t ever master previously in his career. “They told me that they were going to develop a changeup with me, which I was skeptical of at first because I’ve always been searching for that pitch,” Junis said. “I’ve tried a million different grips and never really been able to land one. “They said, ‘We’re going to develop one, we’re going to show you one. Then we’re going to get that fine-tuned.’

Alec Lewis had a conversation with MITCH! at The Athletic.

How has the club assessed Nick Pratto’s start, specifically his 68 strikeouts and 30 walks?

We know Nick is extremely patient at the plate. He takes pride in controlling the zone. There are times when that has turned into strikeouts but also walks. He’s hit home runs. He’s still having a good year. It’s just a matter of consistency to where he gets hot and continues to stay hot. He missed a little bit of time with a concussion, but he’s done just fine.

We don’t want him to change who he is and what makes him a good player. It’s about being aggressive on pitches he hits well, and that’s his goal. That’s our goal for him. He controls the zone, and when he gets opportunities to hit balls hard, he takes advantage. If you look at the overall numbers, you might say, “There are too many strikeouts!” But he still has an OPS over .800. We’re not overly concerned because we know there are going to be strikeouts at times. But, how are we getting to those strikeouts? Are we missing pitches early in at-bats? Are we expanding the zone to strike out? It’s about the how, and how we’re rectifying that.

Old friend Andy McCullough profiled old friend Lorenzo Cain, who just got 10 years of service time and is, in all likelihood, at the end of his career.

“I’ve never had one of these elite swings,” Cain said. “It really took a lot of work to get my swing to where it was, to be consistent, on a day-in, day-out basis. I think a lot of things are catching up to me. I’ve gotten older. Some guys can keep it longer than others.

“I always told myself: If I got to the point where I felt like I couldn’t compete at a high level, like I want to, then I would definitely call it quits, for sure.”

Cain insisted that moment has not yet arrived. Stearns suggested Cain’s defensive utility “buys you more time” to see if his bat will revive. “At some point, we’re going to need him,” Counsell said.

Kris Bubic had a cool moment in San Francisco as a California native who grew up rooting for San Francisco.

“I was a Giants fan growing up. I know Royals fans in 2014 probably don’t want to hear that,” said Bubic. “But just being from here, this is the team I grew up watching, the park I grew up coming to, so it was pretty cool to be out there.

“When I was warming up pregame, [I was] just trying to take it in a little bit because us being in the AL Central, we don’t come out here often. I’ve never been on the field as a player. So it’s pretty special.”

Ah yes, and did you hear? Kansas City is going to be a host city for the 2026 World Cup, beating out other cities like Cincinnati, Denver, and Baltimore. Kansas City is the smallest city to win the bid. It happened because of local passion and a combined effort.

To win the bid, cooperation was required between officials in Missouri and Kansas, Sporting Kansas City, the Chiefs and other organizations.

Thursday was the payoff.

“It’s a testament to the depth of the soccer culture in Kansas City,” said Chiefs chairman and CEO Clark Hunt. “Sporting Kansas City was a founding franchise in Major League Soccer and has been responsible for establishing Kansas City as one of the best soccer cities in the United States.”

Song of the Day

Clearest Blue by CHVRCHES