Downhill Spiral Continues
The time has come, Royals fans. On Monday night, future Royals ace, Yordano Ventura was pulled from his start in the fourth inning due to "Elbow lateral tightness." This isn't exactly good news for the Royals. In a year where everything was supposed to come together, and we were supposed to be "real contenders," everything has seemed to go wrong for the Royals, so why wouldn't this too?
Coming into Monday, Yordano Ventura was 2-4 (due to the Royals lack of run support) with a 2.80 ERA. Yordano Ventura quickly made his way into the hearts of all fans in Kansas City, earning the nickname "Ace" Ventura. It is speculated that after James Shields leaves due to free agency, young Yordano will become the ace of our staff. If it were any other team, I would say that the damage would not be as extensive as 'Tommy John' surgery. Given that this is a season where everything else is going wrong for Kansas City, why wouldn't this too?
The Royals have already lost fellow righty, Luke Hochevar for the year because of the same issue. At the beginning of the year, we had three quality starting pitchers, and one reliable long-man in the bullpen. I wouldn't want to jump to any conclusions, but after Ventura goes down with 'Tommy John' surgery, we will be down to two quality starters, and no good long relief pitchers.
Aside from having hardly any decent pitchers left, the Royals offense certainly isn't helping the cause. Leading the team in average at .286, Eric Hosmer. Salvador Perez leads the team with 4 home runs, which is quite pathetic, if I do say so myself. Finally, Alex Gordon leads the team in RBI's with 26. With the Royals anemic offense, combined with their inability to keep pitchers healthy, I'd say this is a subpar season for the Royals so far.
The only bright spot on this Royals team is the defense. Although it seems backwards, the Royals best outfield arm is their left fielder, Alex Gordon. Alex Gordon leads the outfield with 4 assists. It really is a treat to watch Gordon play everyday in left field. Lorenzo Cain isn't too shabby on defense either. Cain is 2nd in the outfield with 2 assists. Aside from the fact that Cain can't seem to keep himself off of the disabled list, Lorenzo continues to dazzle almost every night while he runs, leaps, and dives across the outfield grass. Although Cain and Gordon both lead a strong outfield, the real treat is watching short stop, Alcides Escobar make Gold Glove caliber plays each and every night. It would be my guess that by the end of the year, this Royals club will be filled with Gold Glovers.
I'm really not sure what to say about the Royals as a whole. Their pitching staff seems to be dwindling by the week, and their dismal offense just isn't going to cut it. This was supposed to be a season of 85-90 wins, but at the current pace, the Royals are destined to finish right around .500. In a year where everything was supposed to come together, everything seems to be falling apart. What else could go wrong for these Royals of Kansas City?