Ned Yost media session: August 12, 2014
The pitching has been there all season for the Kansas City Royals and manager Ned Yost. The bullpen, which has a 1.46 ERA since July 22, has been among the best in baseball and the starters have the fourth-best ERA (3.70) in the American League while limiting Royals relievers to the fourth-fewest innings in the Majors. When Eric Hosmer was placed on the disabled list with a right-hand fracture on August 2, many wondered where the offense would come from. During the current eight-game winning streak it has been a total team effort.
“We got guys hot at the right time,” Yost said. “Billy got hot at the right time, Gordy got hot at the right time, Cain was hot earlier then cooled off and got hot again, Esky’s swinging the bat well.”
“I think what’s most impressive to me is we’re really taking advantage with runner in scoring position we’re making it count.”
And taking advantage is putting it lightly. Kansas City is hitting an absurd .450 (27-for-60) with runners scoring position since the beginning of the streak on August 3 in Oakland. The stretch has propelled the Royals into first place by a half game in the American League Central after falling 8.0 games behind the division lead following play on July 21 behind both Detroit and Cleveland in the standings.
The winning streak has created a buzz among Kansas City fans, who have filled Kauffman Stadium the past four games to the tune of over 110,000. In the ninth inning on Monday night, the noise and energy was apparent.
“That’s your home field advantage,” Yost said. “If we can pack this place every night and have the energy and cheering for us it definitely is an advantage to home team. They feel it, they sense it, it’s almost like they crave it and helps them take their game to the next level. It’s a special time.”
The Royals have won six games in a row at “The K,” pushing their home record to 31-27.
By Nate Rowan