It was a full house at Busch Stadium in St. Louis last night and, across the state, many packed into the KC Live District. The Royals pulled out a late-inning squeaker and hero Mike Aviles got the customary ‘Pie in the face of the rookie during the post-game interview’ courtesy of Jose Guillen.
Yep, it was a great night to be wearing blue here in the Show-Me state or anywhere else in the world Royals fans reside. Let’s go around the horn…
The Royals watch party in the KC Live block was a resounding success. KC Live officials estimated 1,200 people were in the one-block area at first pitch.
Royals fans were treated to most of the excitement of a regular home game and were entertained by several contests, games and performances before David DeJesus even stepped into the batter’s box in St. Louis..
This lucky fan won a game used autographed Mark Grudzielanek bat during the raffle.
In-game host Tim Scott talks to the winner of the John Deere lawnmower race.
Royals fans and a few Cardinals supporters turned out for the Royals watch party under the roof of the KC Live Block in the Power & Light District.
Members of K Crew sing Garth Brooks “Friends In Low Places” on stage during a commercial break.
Mike Aviles had the biggest hit last night – not to overshadow Kyle Davies seven innings of one-run ball or the contributions from the rest of the clubhouse. The rookie shortstop has now hit three homers in his short Major League career. Last night’s homer was lined into the Royals bullpen as Ron Mahay was warming to pitch the bottom half of the eighth.
Trey Hillman said after the game he was hoping for someone to “go boom” and Aviles did just that. Aviles has been sensational since being purchased from Omaha at the end of May and given the Royals offense a real boost. He’s hitting .333 with a .689 slugging percentage. Subtract his Major League debut (0-for-3 on May 29), and those numbers jump to .357 and .738. To further illustrate just what Aviles has done so far, he’s got nine extra base hits out of his 15 hits. As broadcaster Ryan Lefebvre pointed out last night on FSN-KC, 60 percent of his hits have gone for more than one base. The Cardinals Albert Pujols is currently at 44 percent with a career .621 slugging percentage and one of the greatest power hitters of all-time, Barry Bonds sits at 49 percent with a career .607 slugging percentage. Granted, Aviles’ numbers have come in just 12 Major League games while Bonds has played 2,986 contests. But it’s a start.
Jose Guillen tied a career high by picking up a hit in his 11th straight game last night, going 2-for-4 with his Major League-leading 26th double…David DeJesus collected another RBI tying the game in the fifth, and is now hitting an even .400 with runners in scoring position, which is good for second in the Majors…DeJesus’ average has now climbed to .307 which is seventh in the American League.
Last night marked the professional debut for several new Royals players as two of the organization’s four Rookie League teams began their seasons. Both the Idaho Falls Chukars and the Burlington Royals fell 5-3 in their home openers against the Casper Ghosts and the Danville Braves, respectively. The Surprise (Ariz.) Royals will start up on Sunday in what promises to be hot conditions in the desert.
You can get daily box scores for all the Royals minor league teams here. And you can keep tabs on the Royals 2008 draft here. Tomorrow we’ll talk a little bit about all the draft picks who have signed already.
With all the talk about minor league teams, we’d like to pose a question to you. Forgetting about affiliations, what’s the most creative minor league team name in your opinion? Of course in our system, we’ve got the Naturals, the Blue Rocks, the Bees and the Chukars, not to mention the Royals at three different affilates…But the Chukars opponent yesterday, the Casper Ghosts, is a pretty good one. What about the Albuquerque Isotopes? Or the Batavia Muckdogs? What do you guys say?
Look for tonight’s starting lineup later today, until then here’s the Royals official game notes.
Let’s make it 2-0 against the Cards and four straight overall.
All eyes in the state of Missouri will be on St. Louis over the next three days… or at least they should be.
The legacy of ’85 is draped over Kansas City-St. Louis, otherwise known as the I-70 Series. Since interleague started, the cross-state rivals have been a fixture on the Royals schedule. Today is the first of six games in the 2008 Show-Me-State series. After a 3-3 record last season against the Cardinals, KC owns a 4-2 record this season against two first place National League teams.
Kyle Davies (2-0, 1.53 ERA) throws tonight, coming off a no decision against Texas last week. Davies, who has been impressive so far this season, faces Joel Pineiro (2-3, 4.41. Davies run since his recall from the Omaha Royals on May 31 has been pretty stellar, allowing only three runs to cross the plate in 17.2 innings. In fact, before his recall, Davies was leading the Pacific Coast League in ERA and had allowed just four earned runs in his last 25 innings in Triple-A. Quick math for the challenged, that’s a 1.48 ERA in his last 42.2 innings.
With Davies throwing tonight, the Royals look to extend the strong starting pitching performances they have had over the last seven games. The next two games in St. Louis, the Royals send Brian Bannister and Zack Greinke to the mound.
Wednesday: Bannister is 1-0 versus the Cardinals when he pitched seven shutout innings in Kansas City last summer. In a switch from the original probables , Braden Looper pitches tomorrow instead of today.
Thursday: Greinke looks to continue his streak of nine straight shutout innings after seven on Friday night in Arizona. Anthony Reyes will be recalled from the minors for Thursday’s day game. He will take the place of ex-Royal Todd Wellemeyer who is battling right elbow inflammation.
Yesterday’s off day was the Royals first in 13 days, going back to June 2…They had also played the previous 20 straight days before June 2…Joey Gathright (3), Mark Grudzielanek (5) and Jose Guillen (10) enter tonight with three or more game hitting streaks…The Club scored 20 runs in the final two games of the Arizona series, including season highs for runs (12) and hits (17) on Saturday.
Tonight will be big, not just because the Royals start their first series of the season with St. Louis viewing party in the Kansas City Power & Light District. Tonight’s game will be broadcast on the 192 square foot HD video screen in the KC Live block. The Game Entertainment folks will be working hard all night with complete between inning features throughout the entire game including the hot dog derby, in-game host Tim Scott and plenty of contests and prizes.
The fun will start an hour before first pitch with performances by the Lee’s Summit North Broncos drumline and the Lee’s Summit North Northern Stars dance team – the reigning Class 6A Missouri State Champions. Sluggerrr and the K Crew will be on hand as well.
Look for tonight’s starting lineup later today, until then here’s the Royals Official Game Notes.
See you at the Power & Light District.
The team had a successful trip to Arizona,winning the series over the Diamondbacks. And they are enjoying their day off in St. Louis.
This week is the first of two Cardinals weeks. It’s blue versus red – the I-70 Series 23 years later. The Royals encourage all of you to sport your blue this week and attend the watch party tomorrow in the Kansas City Power & Light District.
With that said, let’s go around the horn…
How about that starting pitching of late? Gil Meche threw four perfect innings yesterday. Yea, perfect. Meche did eventually allow three runs, but he got the win and finished off a nice series win over the Diamondbacks.
As for the rest of the rotation…They’ve delivered. Meche, rookie Luke Hochevar, Zack Greinke, Brian Bannister and tomorrow’s starter Kyle Davies have been sharp over the last week. In pitching 46.1 innings, the group has a 2.53 ERA. That’s 13 earned runs during a seven game span. Royals’ starters have allowed just 3 homers and struck out 36 (big thanks to Meche for his 10 K’s yesterday) during those seven games. Now that is quality pitching.
Royals broadcaster Ryan Lefebvre said it during yesterday’s FSN-KC broadcast. David DeJesus is locked in right now. The praise came after the Royals outfielder hit his first career grand slam into Arizona’s version of a splash down – the pool in right-center field. DeJesus is hitting .350 over his last 20 games, which includes a 12-game hitting streak. DeJesus has 11 extra base hits during that span including four homers.
Recently recalled Mike Aviles is killing the ball with a .368 average and a .711 slugging percentage over his last 10 games…Jose Guillen is too, extending his hitting streak to 10 games and upping his average to a season high .288.
This weekend spells a ton of great stuff for fans. Three games versus the San Francisco Giants and three great promotions.
Friday: The Royals present Kansas City’s largest firework show ever, The Sky Show hosted by Pepsi and 99.7 The Boulevard…The Royals are 4-2 in interleague play this season.
Saturday: Alex Gordon Bobblehead Night…The Royals are 1-0 on Bobblehead nights this season, winning 4-2 on Big John Mayberry night versus Cleveland
Sunday: Salute to Negro Leagues Day and Kansas City Monarch Caps…For one day, it’ll be the Monarchs versus the San Francisco Seals as both teams will wear Negro Leagues throwbacks.
Hope to see you out at the K this weekend and remember, it’s the first of two Cardinals weeks…WEAR YOUR BLUE.
For Thursday’s afternoon game at The K – that ended with the Royals defeating the Rangers, 6-5 – we joined MLB in its effort to fight prostate cancer. Normally, we hold Prostate Cancer Awareness Day on Father’s Day, which is this Sunday (June 15), but since the club will be on the road in Arizona this weekend, we opted to help raise awareness now…
So, before the win Thursday, Manager Hillman and outfielder/first baseman Mark Teahen presented the Prostate Cancer Foundation with a $5,000 grant on behalf of Royals Charities.
To learn more about MLB’s partnership and support of the Prostate Cancer Foundation, including the Homerun Challenge, visit www.prostatecancerfoundation.org.
Well, on Friday, June 20, we are kicking our normal Friday Fireworks spectacular up about 20-30 notches with the biggest fireworks display in the history of Kansas City!
The Kansas City Sky Show at The K will follow the Royals 7:10 p.m. game with the San Francisco Giants and is a joint effort brought to you by Hy-Vee, Pepsi, 99.7 The Boulevard and, of course, the Royals.
In addition to being about five-times longer than our normal Friday shows, the KC Sky Show will blend pyrotechnics, special effects, high-definition video along with a choreographed musical score. On-field special effects, the Kauffman Stadium fountains and CrownVision will all factor in, too. In short, it will be a fireworks show you won’t want to miss…
CALENDAR UPDATE: The Royals have cancelled the open tryout camp scheduled for tomorrow – Tuesday, June 10 – at Mid-America Nazarene University in Olathe, Kan.
There are no plans to re-schedule at this time.
As the 2008 draft enters the final stages, we thought we’d take a quick look ahead on the ol’ community calendar to see what’s coming up while the team is on the road and when the Boys and Blue return to town. Here’s the rundown…
Alex’s Lemonade Stand: If you are out and about Saturday (June 7), don’t forget to stop by and visit Alex’s Lemonade Stand at your area Hy-Vee. In fact, if you are in the Lee’s Summit area, you’ll get to hang out with Royals mascot Sluggerrr, who will appear at two local Hy-Vee stores in support of Alex’s Lemonade Stand and the fight against childhood cancer. Sluggerrr will appear at the Hy-Vee store located at 301 NE Rice Road in Lee’s Summit, Mo. at 9 a.m. and will visit another Lee’s Summit location (310 SW Ward Road) at 10 a.m.
On June 6-7, Alex’s Lemonade Stands will be at all Kansas City area Hy-Vee stores as part of the national Alex’s Lemonade Weekend. Last year’s stands in Kansas City raised $80,000 for childhood cancer research.
More Sluggerrr: On Tuesday (June 10), prior to cheering on the Royals in the series opener against the Texas Rangers, Sluggerrr joins the National Center for Fathering at the 2008 Celebration of Fatherhood. The event, which will take place at the Kansas City Public Library, honors the winners of the Royals “Father of the Year” essay contest.
Royals Open Tryout Camp: The Royals open tryout camp is also Tuesday at Mid-America Nazarene University at 2030 E. College Way in Olathe, Kan. Registration, which is free, begins at 8 a.m. and the camp will start at 9 a.m. Don’t forget your liability waiver - found at royals.com!
“Weekday Edition” Dodge Buck Night: Break out those ones…for Dodge Buck Night! It’s a special mid-week edition (Wednesday!) of the Kauffman Stadium fan favorite!
RBI Day at The K: The RBI kids are back at The K on Wednesday for the Royals 7:10 p.m. game. Each season, the Royals host more than 1,200 participants from the Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities (RBI) program for a special night at Kauffman Stadium. The kids receive tickets and food vouchers as well as special recognition during the game.
Prostate Cancer Foundation Day: Once again, the Royals join Major League Baseball in its effort to fight prostate cancer. Each home run hit will be matched by fans to help the Prostate Cancer Foundation find a cure for this disease. In addition, Royals Charities will present a $5,000 grant to the foundation.
U.S. Navy “Leap Frogs” Parachute Team: Get to your seats early on Thursday! Prior to the Royals 1:10 p.m. series finale with Texas, eight members of the U.S. Navy “Leap Frogs” Parachute Team will sail into Kauffman Stadium. Estimated time of arrival for the “Leap Frogs” is 12:53 p.m., but make sure you are in your seats by 12:50 p.m. so you don’t miss a thing!
Player Name: Eric Hosmer
Position: First Baseman
School: American Heritage HS (Fla.)
Birthdate: Oct. 24, 1989
Height: 6’4″ Weight: 215 lbs.
Bats: Left Throws: Left
Check out the stats and scouting report on the Royals first-round selection here on mlb.com.
More on Hosmer…
From the press release: The Kansas City Royals have selected Eric Hosmer, a first baseman from American Heritage High School in Plantation, Florida, with the third overall pick of the June Free Agent Draft. Hosmer, who bats and throws left-handed, hit .470 with 11 home runs, 27 RBI, 49 runs, and 14 stolen bases as a senior.
Hosmer participated in the Aflac All-American High School Baseball Classic in 2007 and was named the 2008 Player of the Year by the South Florida Sun-Sentinel. Baseball America’s 2008 draft preview rated Hosmer as the high school player with the best power as well as being the prep talent that is closest to the majors.