September 2011

Ned Yost media session: September 17

The Royals will send out left-hander Everett Teaford to the mound as they look to expand their winning streak to seven games tonight against the visiting White Sox.  The rookie is making his second Major League start after spending time in the bullpen throughout the year.  His only other start came last Sunday at Seattle, as Teaford tossed five shutout innings before exiting due to a limited pitch count.  His pitch count tonight will be bumped up to 85-90 pitches, Royals manager Ned Yost mentioned.

The key to Teaford’s success against the Mariners was to let his defense do the work for him. 

“He made those guys hit their smash line drives right at [Alcides] Escobar,” Yost joked. 

Yost said he hoped Teaford could be just as effective tonight at inducing batters to hit the ball right at Royals defenders, no matter how hard the balls were hit.

“An out is an out, and that’s what we’re looking for,” Yost said.

Teaford will not only start tonight against the White Sox, but will draw the start against them next weekend as well when the Royals visit Chicago for the final time in 2011.  Yost explained that facing the same team in back-to-back starts shouldn’t be a problem for Teaford as long as he is able to do a few simple things.

 “He [Teaford] is going to have to go out and throw his game,” Yost said.  “He needs to keep the ball down and he’ll be fine.”

As the Royals reward fans tonight for their tremendous support throughout the season with Fan Appreciation Night, Ned Yost wanted to show his gratitude to the fans, as well.

“We really appreciate our fans.  We thank them for their support,” Yost said.  “We appreciate everything they do for us.”

The Detroit Tigers celebrated their American League Central Division title after clinching it with a win last night, and Yost knows Royals fans and players alike are anxious to have their ball club reach those kinds of milestones.

Asked if he and the Royals players thought Kansas City could achieve that milestone in the next couple of years, Yost replied:

“Absolutely.  I said that last year.  I’m deeply convicted in that.  And I think so are they.”

 

Futures Night photos

Yesterday was a big day for Kansas City’s minor league award winners…let’s take a look:

The day started with community visits – our group visited a children’s hospital and toured the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.

Our award winners moved on to Kauffman Stadium, where they learned about the franchise at the Royals Hall of Fame.  The next stop was batting practice, where some of the young players met a Kansas City baseball great.

For others, it was a chance to visit with some of today’s Royals.

As game time neared, our award winners signed autographs for a line of happy fans.

After perfecting the penmanship, the group took center stage in a special pregame awards ceremony.

During the game, it was time to reflect on a busy day…and dream about playing at The K in the future.

Halfway to St. Paddy’s lineup

 

Come on out to tonight’s 6:10 start and take home a green hat (first 20,000 fans)!

Here’s the lineup:

Gordon – LF

Cabrera – CF

Butler – DH

Hosmer – 1B

Francoeur – RF

Moustakas – 3B

Perez – C

Getz – 2B

Escobar – SS

Teaford – LHP

Walk-off photos! Six in a row for KC

 

 

Ned Yost media session: Salvador Perez

With Kansas City riding a season-long five-game winning streak going into the second game of their four-game set with the Chicago White Sox, Royals manager Ned Yost sat down and spoke about his rookie catcher, Salvador Perez.  The 21-year old, who was known for his outstanding defensive skills coming up through the minor leagues, is proving he can handle the bat as well.  He’s currently on a career-high nine-game hitting streak after going 3-for-4 in last night’s 7-2 win over Chicago, falling a home run shy of the cycle. 

Perez has hit well so far in the Majors, putting up a batting average of .318 (35-for-110) with an on-base percentage of .350.  His 110 at-bats provide a very small sample size, but Yost thinks Perez will be able to hit well throughout his career.

“He’s got a nice, compact swing.  He puts the ball in play, and he doesn’t strike out,” Yost said.  “Those are pretty key ingredients to having a productive swing.”

Even if he doesn’t continue his hot hitting, Perez’s stellar defense alone could make him one of the game’s premier catchers. 

“I think he’s got a chance to be the total package,” said Yost, himself a former big league catcher.  “He can be an All-Star-type defender, and he can swing the bat.”

“He blocks the ball as well as anybody I’ve seen.  He’s got as quick of a release as I’ve ever seen.  He’s very coordinated.  He’s very accurate, and given the opportunity, he’s going to throw out a lot of runners.”

Yost pointed out that the Royals pitching staff hasn’t been giving Perez the best opportunity to throw guys out because they are not getting the ball to the plate quick enough.  Getting the ball to the plate quicker is all about a pitcher’s delivery, and speeding up their delivery time is going to be a point of emphasis next spring, Yost mentioned. 

“If we’ve got a catcher that can throw like he can, we’ve got to have the ability to give him the opportunity to throw runners out,” Yost said.

Fun with numbers: Holland at home in KC

Kansas City has employed a strong group of young relievers in 2011.  Right-handed rookie reliever Greg Holland has baffled batters all year.  He has been especially dominant at home, posting a 3-0 record and a 0.34 ERA while limiting opponents to a .103 average (9-for-87) in 26.2 innings.

We recently checked to see where Holland’s numbers ranked among pitchers who had tossed at least 25.0 innings in their home stadium in a single season…and the results put Holland at the top of KC’s all-time list and near the top in all of MLB since 1946!

First we look at ERA, where Holland’s 0.34 mark to date leads the way, with top closers Joakim Soria, Dan Quisenberry and Jeff Montgomery also in the top five.

 

Player Season

INN

ER

ERA

1

Greg Holland 2011 KC

26.2

1

0.34

2

Joakim Soria 2008 KC

35.0

3

0.77

3

Dan Quisenberry 1987 KC

27.1

3

0.99

4

Mike Magnante 1996 KC

31.1

4

1.15

5

Jeff Montgomery 1990 KC

52.2

7

1.20

 

Holland ranks eighth in MLB dating to 1946, the first year that the information is available from Stats, Inc.

  Player Season

INN

ER

ERA

1t

Jeff Calhoun 1987 Phi

26.2

0

0.00

1t

Steve Kline 2004 StL

25.2

0

0.00

3

Rollie Fingers 1981 Mil

36.2

1

0.25

4

Scott Downs 2008 Tor

34.2

1

0.26

5

Jose Mesa 1995 Cle

31.2

1

0.28

6

Hong-Chih Kuo 2010 LAD

31

1

0.29

7

Darren Hall 1997 LA

27.2

1

0.33

8

Greg Holland 2011 KC

26.2

1

0.34

 

Here’s a look at the batting average against, with Holland ahead of some dominant KC efforts, including the Mad Hungarian, Al Hrabosky!:

1

Greg Holland 2011 KC

.103

2

Al Hrabosky 1978 KC

.134

3

Mark Littell 1976 KC

.151

4

Joakim Soria 2008 KC

.151

5

Mike Armstrong 1983 KC

.166

 Finally, we see that Greg is third in the Majors since 1946 with his .103 opponents’ batting average at home!

1

Jonathan Broxton 2009 LAD

.095

2

Jeff Calhoun 1987 Phi

.102

3

Greg Holland 2011 KC

.103

4

Hong-Chih Kuo 2010 LAD

.108

5

Randy Myers 1988 NYM

.108

6

Jeff Nelson 2001 Sea

.109

7

Santiago Casilla 2011 SF

.110

 

Friday lineup vs. White Sox

Tonight’s game starts at 7:10.  The Royals Coat Drive will be taking place from 6-8 p.m. near the Diamond Club.  The Royals encourage fans to donate new and gently-used coats of all sizes – adults, boys, girls, toddlers and infants.  Winter accessories such as gloves, hats and scarves, will also be accepted.  In addition, Royals wives will sell mystery bags that include a baseball autographed by a Royals player for a $20 donation and player autograph cards for a $10 donation.  For details, visit www.royals.com/community.

Here’s the lineup: 

Gordon – LF

Cabrera – CF

Butler – DH

Hosmer – 1B

Francoeur – RF

Moustakas – 3B

Giavotella – 2B

Perez – C

Escobar – SS

Paulino – RHP

Ned Yost media session: September 15

Before opening up a four-game series with tonight’s 7:10 contest vs. the Chicago White Sox, Royals manager Ned Yost was still raving about yesterday’s performance from starting pitcher Luke Hochevar despite fighting sickness throughout last night’s appearance. Yost praised Hochevar’s accomplishments for the 2011 season with what ended up being his final outing of 2011 during last night’s game against the Minnesota Twins.

“I feel, and the organization feels that he [Hochevar] has accomplished everything that we wanted him to accomplish this year,” Yost said. “He’s poised, he’s healthy, we feel like he’s turned the corner and we are really excited to see what he can accomplish next year.”

Yost commented that the decision to move Hochevar from the starting rotation during the end of the season was not based on possible call ups from Triple-A Omaha but more for Hochevar’s protection and health to rest up for the 2012 season.

“Finding starting pitching is the toughest thing to do at this level and we feel like we have a couple of really good ones with [Danny] Duffy and Hochevar,” Yost said. “We want to make sure we protect them and have them completely ready to compete next year.”

The Royals skipper has not made any final decisions on call ups as the season comes to an end. Yost explained that left-hander Everett Teaford is scheduled for two more spots, leaving three open dates; September 20th, 25th, and 27th, for starting pitching for the end of the season.

Fantasy Camp participants will have the opportunity to purchase tickets to the 2012 All-Star Game

Imagine taking swings against the pitcher you grew up watching…or maybe you would prefer getting tips from a hitting great…

The 2012 Royals Alumni Fantasy Camp is the place to realize your baseball dreams!  Next year’s camp is scheduled for January 30 to February 2 in Surprise, Arizona.  Campers receive accommodations, daily breakfast and lunch, jerseys, autographs from the alumni instructors and much more! 

Participants in the 2012 camp will have an added bonus – the opportunity to purchase two tickets to the 2012 All-Star Game!

For more details and to sign up, visit royals.com/fantasycamp or call 816.504.4150.

Photos: Coleman, Crow and Hosmer meet U.S. women’s national soccer stars

The U.S. women’s soccer team is in Kansas City for a match on Saturday vs. Canada.  Today, pitchers Louis Coleman and Aaron Crow along with first baseman Eric Hosmer had the opportunity to attend a practice as the soccer stars trained at Swope Park.  Tonight, forward Alex Morgan will throw out the first pitch before the Royals/White Sox game (7:10 start).  Good luck to the women’s team…enjoy your stay in KC!  Let’s take a look at the photos, including Alex Morgan working on her pitching:

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