May 27, 2014

Fifteen For Fifty

Hello sports fans! Memorial Day has come and gone, the first fifty games are in the books and MLB has introduced its newest line of camoflauge-stars-and-stripes-god-bless-america bullshit merchandise. It’s officially summer! This important benchmark provides a great opportunity for me to opine on the Royals performance thus far.

And what exactly qualifies me to opine on this team? Well, as a displaced Royals fan and loyal mooch of a loyal MLB.TV subscriber, I watch an average of three innings of every Royals game. That’s about 18 innings a week, which is 18 more innings of Royals baseball than any sane person would ever watch.

Anyway, here are my fifteen highlights/lowlights of the 2014 season thus far:

1. How You Say? Ah, Yes…Aoki.

Is it Ah-oakey, Eye-oakey or Long A-oakey? No one, not even the Royals own broadcast team seems to be sure. That’s why I just call him Chica.

2.       Eric Hosmer is Hal Morris

Night in and night out, Eric Hosmer takes violent swings and regularly connects for some scalding line drives. As a result, he is often mistaken in our minds as one of the few home run threats in the Royals lineup. In fact, Hosmer’s stats more closely resemble that of former Royals first baseman, Hal Morris. In his one season with the club, Morris hit .309 with one homer and 40 RBI.

3.       Alex Gordon is God

The way I feel about Mike Moustakas (I loathe him) is the way I used to feel about Alex Gordon. I was ready to give up on Gordo years ago, and I’m fine with saying I was dead wrong about his future. Sure, it would be great if he did more at the plate, but his defense is 100% deserving of all the acclaim it receives. He’s fucking unbelievable in left field. He gets to everything, always hustles, NEVER makes an error and guns down runners like a border patrol agent.

4.       Billy Butler Is A Bumstick

Billy Butler sucks. He has one home run. He is slow as shit. He has a negative WAR. Adam Dunn has struck out over 50 times this year and his OBP is a nearly a full point higher than Billy Ray’s. We would be better off with Jarrod Dyson as our everyday DH, preferably laying down a bunt in every situation.

5.       Royals Pitchers Can’t Field

Royals pitchers are hopelessly unable to field their position. Of the Royals' 31 errors on the season, pitchers account for eleven of them. Last month, Danny Duffy single-handedly lost a game with two awful throwing errors.

Exactly what Royals pitchers work on when they report early to Spring Training remains unclear.

6.       A Royals Broadcast with Steve Physioc and Rex Hudler is Completely Unwatchable

Thank God for MLB.TV premium and their multiple broadcast options. Ryan and Rex I can tolerate, but even with a side of Jeff Montgomery, Fizz and Hud are an audio and video (see photo below) atrocity. I would rather watch an entire season of The Bill Engvall Show.

7.       At Least David Glass Isn’t Racist

With all the hysteria surrounding Donald Sterling and his racist comments, Royals fans can at least be proud that their owner is not a racist. Here he is pictured with his African-American General Manager, Dayton Moore.

8.       What’s On Second?

Even with Omar Infante’s stint on the DL, I’ve had little cause for concern at 2B. Whether we get Infante, Gio, Ciriaco or even Valencia, it’s comforting to know that there is no chance of seeing Chris Getz or Elliot Johnson on the lineup card.

9.       Brett Hayes Is Bad, But It’s Funny

Brett Hayes has not reached base in 2014. He’s 0-for-26, in 26 plate appearances. Do you realize what this means? He’s one at-bat away from committing 27 straight outs. That’s the offensive equivalent of a perfect game. I don’t even know what to call it yet, but this would be the most impressive feat by a Royal this year. I demand a T-Shirt Tuesday design be dedicated to this occasion.

10.   As Usual, The Royals Suck Against the AL Central

The Royals are 6-15 against division opponents this year. That is by far the worst intra-division record in all of baseball. Go Royals! Good luck making the playoffs!

11.   Challenge It!

In case you’re wondering, Ned Yost is 6-4 on replay challenges this year. Overall, less than fifty percent of league-wide challenges have been overturned this season. So I guess that’s good. And, challenges generally come at bench coach Don Wakamatsu’s discretion, so we can happily avoid giving Ned Yost credit for anything. Go Don, You’re The Best!

12.   Blue Jerseys

When the Royals announced their new road alternate jerseys, most of us were like, okay, whatever. They’re not great, they’re not terrible. Thanks to the Uniform Matchup Tracker, we can now verify that the team’s performance while wearing them is equally apathetic. The Royals are 4-5 when wearing the new unis.

13.   Casey W Guy

I still don’t know who/what this is.

14.   Wade Davis…Sucks?

In Wade Davis, we see the flip side of the Eric Hosmer dilemma. When Wade Davis pitches, I only remember the bad. The pitch left up on the zone, the walked batter or the almost $5 million dollars he will be paid this year. There’s no denying when you look at his 2014 stats though (1.61 ERA in 20 appearances), the guy is a baller. Such is the nature of Wade Davis.

15.   Worst Offense Ever

If Jose Abreu hadn’t gotten hurt, I have no doubt that at this moment he would have more home runs than the entire Royals team. Since that fact isn’t available to mock, I’ll use another. The Royals are the only team in the top three for Infield Hits and Bunts for Hits. THAT’S WHAT SPEED DO!

Only 112 Games To Go. A lot can happen. Will the Royals continue to falter and finish 80-82? Or will the bats heat up and power the team to 82-80? Only time will tell!

Go Royals! You're The Third Best In Your Division After Fifty Games Played!

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