The Kansas City Royals return Monday for a seven-game homestand against the powers of the American League East – the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox. Great tickets are still available to cheer on the Royals as Kansas City takes on the Yankees in a three-game series, August 15-17, followed by a four-game weekend series with the Red Sox, August 18-21. The homestand marks the only visit of the season by both clubs in 2011.
The week is highlighted by great ticket deals, special events and live entertainment for the whole family.
Monday, August 15 – New York Yankees vs. Royals, 7:10 p.m.
Tuesday, August 16 – New York Yankees vs. Royals, 7:10 p.m.
- Fans Can Meet Butler at Hy-Vee – Billy Butler will meet fans and sign autographs at the new Hy-Vee store located at 5330 NW 64th Street (just west of I-29 and Highway 71) in Kansas City, Mo., in support of the Pepsi MAX Field of Dreams program. Fans are invited to come out and meet Butler during this free event from 12:30-1:30 p.m. Fans can vote for their 11-man dream team of baseball legends and be entered to win the chance to take on the Field of Dreams team on their home turf next spring by visiting www.mlb.com/PepsiMAX or texting “PEPSIMAX” to 41623 to receive instructions on how to vote via their mobile device.
Wednesday, August 17 – New York Yankees vs. Royals, 7:10 p.m.
- INK Student Night – Rivals Outfield Box or Hy-Vee Infield tickets are available for all Wednesday home games for high school and college students with valid ID at the Kauffman Stadium Box Office for just $7. Seating is subject to availability. All Student Nights feature live local music prior to the game in the Outfield Experience and include a $7 hot dog and beverage special at the Crown Classic concession stand in the Outfield Experience prior to the game. For details, visit www.royals.com/studentnight.
INK Local Music Showcase – Catch a free pregame concert on us. With support from 96.5 The Buzz, every Wednesday INK Student Night features live local music prior to the game in the Outfield Experience. The Good Foot will be performing prior to the Yankees-Royals game. For details, visit www.royals.com/studentnight.
Thursday, August 18 – Boston Red Sox vs. Royals, 7:10 p.m.
- All You Can Eat Seats – It’s another All You Can Eat Seats night! Fans can purchase All You Can Eat Seats located in the Loge Level (Sec. 318 – 325), which include unlimited ballpark fare. All the hot dogs, nachos, peanuts, pretzels and Pepsi products you can handle for one low price! Individual and group discount tickets available. For details, visit www.royals.com/allyoucaneat.
Friday, August 19 – Boston Red Sox vs. Royals, 7:10 p.m.
- Hy-Vee/Pepsi Fireworks Fridays – A spectacular fireworks show after every Friday home game.
- Heart & Hustle Award – The Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association honors Alex Gordon as the Royals recipient of the Heart and Hustle Award, which recognizes players who best demonstrate a passion for the game.
- Royals Koozie – The first 10,000 fans receive blue Royals Koozie presented by the University of Kansas Hospital. (photo attached) The koozie features the basic tips for dealing with sprains and strains.
- Health Awareness Day – Health professionals from the University of Kansas Hospital will be on hand to distribute information and gifts to fans while helping them learn valuable information about staying healthy.
- 610 Saturday – Enjoy great activities, including face painters and live music, prior to the game in the Outfield Experience. For details, visit www.royals.com/610saturdays
Sunday, August 21 – Boston Red Sox vs. Royals, 1:10 p.m.
- K-State Day at The K – Supporters of Kansas State University can join fellow Wildcats for a day of big league action. The festivities, presented by FOX Sports Kansas City, include a reserved tailgate location in Lot N and appearances from K-State coaches and Kansas City area Wildcat student-athletes. Also, the first 700 Wildcat fans who bring their K-State Day discounted ticket to the K-State table inside Hy-Vee Gate B will receive a limited edition white and royal purple KC Royals K-State cap. (photo attached) Gates open at 11:30 a.m. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.royals.com/kstate. To reserve a group of 20 or more tickets, call (816) 504-4165.
- Family FunDay Sunday – The August 21 festivities feature face painters, a caricature artist and live family-friendly entertainment from Vocalocity. Fans can also enjoy the All-Day Play Pass for unlimited activities in the Outfield Experience for just $10. www.royals.com/sunday.
- Fun Run presented by Sprint – All fans can run the bases after the game (conditions permitting).
- Bases Loaded 4-Pack for $60 – Get four Hy-Vee Infield tickets and $10 in loaded value per ticket. www.royals.com/basesloaded.
Fans may purchase tickets online at royals.com, by calling 1-800-6ROYALS, at area Hy-Vee stores or at the Kauffman Stadium Box Office.
Today the Royals placed catcher Brayan Pena on the Paternity Leave List and selected the contract of catcher Salvador Perez from Triple-A Omaha. Perez is expected to be in uniform for tonight’s game at Tampa Bay, wearing #13. To create a 40-man roster spot for Perez, the Royals requested Unconditional Release Waivers on RHP Kyle Davies.
Perez, 21, began the season at Double-A Northwest Arkansas. He batted .283 with nine home runs and 43 RBI in 79 games for the Naturals. Perez went on to bat .333 (16-for-48) with a home run and 10 RBI in 12 games for Omaha.
Pena will be eligible for reinstatement tomorrow and must be reinstated no later than Saturday.
With the 2012 MLB All-Star Game official logo unveiling on taking place last Tuesday, KC’s Around the Horn turned to 2011 Royals All-Star pitcher Aaron Crow for a “KC Close Up” 101 on his experience during the MLB All-Star game in Phoenix this year and some interesting facts that you might not know about the 24-year-old rookie.
Aaron was born in Topeka, Kansas, the capital city of the state and roughly 70 miles from Kauffman Stadium. The right-handed reliever attended Washburn Rural High School and went on to attend the University of Missouri where he became the Friday night starter for Tigers Baseball in 2007 pitching 117.2 innings, the second most in the Big 12 and ranking fourth all-time in MU history. Aaron, after being picked by Washington in the 2008 draft, was selected by the Kansas City Royals in the first round of the 2009 MLB Draft, the 12th pick overall.
Since making his Major League debut with the Royals this past Opening Day, March 31, the rookie has a 1.93 ERA, tossing 51.1 innings with 49 strikeouts. Let’s find out a little more about our KC “Close Up” subject.
ATH: So, let’s start with the important question, why did you shave your beard recently?
Crow: It was too hot. I really didn’t like it anymore and I was tired of it, ready for a new look.
ATH: Besides baseball, what is your favorite sport? And what’s your favorite team from that sport?
Crow: Football and the Chiefs. I grew up in Topeka and have always been a huge Chiefs fan! When I was growing up I loved the Chiefs ten times more than anybody else. Always been a huge Chiefs fan, it’s nice that they’re doing well now.
ATH: Did you go to the playoff game at Arrowhead last season?
Crow: I did! It was freezing, I had like two pairs of pants, seven jackets, two pairs of gloves on… the first half wasn’t that cold just because it was a close game but during the second half when we we’re getting blown out, I was miserable.
ATH: Even though you went to MU, you grew up in Topeka so you root for KU basketball, right?
Crow: Who told you to ask that… well… sometimes. When they’re playing I want them to do well just because I am a big fan of Bill Self and I liked them when I was a kid but if they’re ever playing Mizzou, I want Mizzou to win. I don’t root against them (KU) if they’re doing well in the tournament but I’d rather them win than say Duke or North Carolina.
ATH: Is there anything really interesting in the rookie bullpen backpack and how do you guys decide who wears it each day?
Crow: It’s just whoever wants to carry it. Nate’s [Adcock] been carrying it lately and Coleman [Louis Coleman] had it for the big chunk of the year and I had it at the beginning but I think Nate’s had it for the past two or three weeks. All there really is in there is Advil and Redbull. At the beginning of the year, when it was cold we had hand warmers in there but really other than Redbull and Advil there’s nothing really in there.
ATH: It’s a rumor that the food at the All-Star Game can be pretty amazing, what was the best dish?
Crow: After the game we had lobster tails, steak, mashed potatoes, it was all really good but probably the best thing was the lobster tails.
ATH: What was your favorite part of the All-Star Game?
Crow: Probably the Home Run Derby. If I would have gotten to play in the game that would have been by far the best part but just being there for the Home Run Derby and watching. I was on the field for pretty much the whole first round and just seeing that and seeing how far those guys were hitting the ball. Being able to sit there and record it, you watch guys on TV that have cameras and I always thought “That’s stupid, why would you want to do that” but now I got the chance to do it and I wanted to remember it. Just being on the field I had my phone out and recording some of the guys hitting, it was a lot of fun.
Crow: Entourage, The Office, and this show on HBO called the Game of Thrones. Modern Family too. I love those shows.
ATH: We appreciate your readership and hope that you learned a little more about the Royals’ right-hander in this edition of “KC Close Up”!
Crow: Wait?! How come Nate [Adcock] got the question about if you wanted to travel anywhere in the world where would it be? I had a great answer for that…
ATH: Well, where would you want to go?
Crow: Ibiza! For all the techno music and glow sticks!
Prior to Sunday’s series finale against the Detroit Tigers, Royals skipper Ned Yost gave an update on outfielder Melky Cabrera, who left yesterday’s game due to ankle soreness. Cabrera was diagnosed with a grade one ankle sprain, which is the least severe ankle sprain. Yost mentioned the Royals will remain cautious with Cabrera, who is day-to-day with the injury.
“We don’t want to take a chance where it gets weak and he really sprains it, and then he’s got to miss two weeks,” Yost said.
With Cabrera out of the lineup, Johnny Giavotella will move into the second spot in the batting order. Yost thinks Giavotella will be a great fit in the two-hole, and sees him batting there permanently at some point in the Royals future.
“I think Johnny [Giavotella] will eventually end up in the two-hole because he can do a lot of things. He hits the ball well the other way,” Yost said. “He can hit and run. He’s a good situational guy. He’s a guy that you want up in tough situations.”
The Royals manager also spoke about lefthander Danny Duffy, who took the loss yesterday for club. Duffy threw five innings giving up just three runs, but was removed because of a high pitch count. Yost mentioned the rookie starting pitcher needs to be more efficient with his pitches, something that may only come with experience.
“Danny’s got all the ingredients to be an outstanding pitcher in the American League. He’s got great stuff. He’s ultra-competitive, smart, and he plays with a lot of intensity. He’s got everything that he needs,” Yost said. “He just needs the experience now to go out and go through it and learn. Experience takes time.”
Here are a few pictures from tonight’s pregame:
Staff Sergeant Daniel Gilyeat threw out the ceremonial first pitch. He is a recipient of two Purple Hearts and a Silver Star. Gilyeat lost his leg in combat while serving in Iraq. He continues to work with disabled veterans through Operation Payback and the Wounded Warriors project. Outfielder Jeff Francoeur caught Sgt. Gilyeat’s first pitch.
Prior to tonight’s 6:10 contest vs the Detroit Tigers, Royals manager Ned Yost talked about the difficulties the Royals squad will face when they go up against the Detroit Tigers starting right-hander Justin Verlander. The 28-year-old ace enters his start this evening with a 15-5 record, and is third in the American League with a 2.24 ERA.
“You get his [Verlander] pitch count up and get him out of the game, and hope that you can get the bullpen,” Yost said. “Or if he makes a mistake, don’t miss it. But he’s got very, very good stuff.”
Yost has confidence in his squad and his starting left-hander, Danny Duffy, to match up well against Verlander. Duffy looks to build on his past three starts, in which he has two wins and a no decision. Yost knows Duffy has a difficult task ahead, but that he is more than capable of beating the four-time All-Star.
“You go into it knowing that if you give up 2 or 3 runs, the odds of you and your team winning the ballgame are probably not going to be that great. You’ve got to go out and throw a good ballgame,” Yost said. “You’ve got to match him [Verlander]. And on a given day, you can do that.”
The Royals skipper praised his bullpen for their versatility and ability to switch roles in the late innings of a game. They will more than likely play a key role if the Royals are going to win the last two games of the set and continue their unbeaten series streak. The club is 4-0 in their last five sets with one series split.
Tonight’s game starts at 6:10. Be sure to tune in as we salute the troops on Armed Forces Day at The K!
Here’s the lineup:
Gordon – LF
Cabrera – CF
Butler – DH
Hosmer – 1B
Francoeur – RF
Giavotella – 2B
Pena – C
Moustakas – 3B
Escobar – SS
Duffy – LHP
Before opening up to a three-game series vs. the Detroit Tigers, Royals manager Ned Yost shared his mutual excitement along with Kansas City fans for infielder Johnny Giavotella’s Major League debut in tonight’s contest. The 24-year old infielder has been batting .339 with 72 RBI and nine home runs for Triple-A Omaha this season. He was leading all of minor league baseball with 153 hits. The decision to call up Giavotella was announced late last night and Giovatella will be batting sixth in the order as the second baseman in tonight’s contest.
“He’s a hard-nosed player, he plays the game with no flash, he just goes out and plays the game hard,” Yost said. “He does that same thing offensively as he does defensively, he gets the most out of his abilities.”
When it comes to a young infield with first baseman Eric Hosmer (21), second baseman Giavotella (24), third baseman Mike Moustakas (22), and shortstop Alcides Escobar (24), the Royals skipper explained that the Royals future is here but that the squad is looking to analyze what the rookies are capable of.
“Giving them an opportunity to play every day to show us exactly what they’re capable of doing is beneficial to not only them but to us,” Yost said. “I like having young guys, they play with a lot of passion and a lot of intensity.”
Yost discussed infielder Chris Getz explaining that Getz has performed outstanding this season and praised his ability to play well not only defensively and offensively but in clutch situations. Yost assured that the decision to call up Giavotella was to grant the 24-year old rookie playing time and will use Getz as a backup infielder throughout the season.
As part of an ongoing effort to support relief efforts in Joplin, Mo., the Royals announced today that “Teams Unite for Joplin” T-shirts will be available in the Majestic Team Store at Kauffman Stadium.
The shirts, which feature the state of Missouri colored in royal blue flanked by logos of the Royals and St. Louis Cardinals, will sell for $20 with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Joplin relief effort. The Royals and Cardinals began the campaign after a massive tornado tore a six-mile path through the heart of Joplin on May 22, destroying 30 percent of the city, claiming more than 150 lives and leaving hundreds injured and displaced.