Results tagged ‘ Jason Kendall ’
Under the knife
According to Yost, everything went well and without complications during David DeJesus’s thumb surgery this morning. The fact that the surgery is rather common and has a high success rate leaves Yost hopeful that the outfielder will return in the expected 10 weeks. Yost said he would like to get David back before the end of the year.
Pick a side
Yost also discussed Alex Gordon’s time in the outfield, saying that he plans on rotating Gordon between left and right for the time being. The manager’s aim is to further develop Gordon as an outfielder and to eventually determine which side of the field he fits in best.
Fans will witness Jason Kendall’s 2,000th career game behind the plate tonight, a feat just four other catchers have accomplished, none faster than the Royals’ backstop. Yost said the most remarkable aspect of Kendall is his durability, which is hard to argue with since the catcher plays nearly every day. As Yost has noted before, he also credits Kendall’s accomplishment to the catcher’s mindset, which Yost said is focused on a marathon.
Yost was also questioned about how his team will finish out its 20 games in 20 days, which began on July 16. He replied by saying “you just have to get through it…it is what it is.” Yost believes stretches like these are what makes the Major League Baseball season so tough.
Tonight fans will see David DeJesus in center field and Mitch Maier in right field, a decision Yost made simply because DeJesus is playing great at that position and he wants Maier to become acclimated with all three outfield positions.
Yost said the two errors in last night’s game were not due to a lack of focus nor were they related to the team having time off over the All-Star Break. Instead, he believes the errors were aggressive mistakes and the result of the players trying to do too much in an effort to get off on the right foot in the second half of the season. Yost expects the team to be less anxious tonight and to play a little more controlled.
Under further review
The manager also discussed Coco Crisp’s controversial leadoff double in last night’s game. Yost said the reversed call definitely set a dangerous precedent for the contest. While he understands that human error is a natural part of the game and that players and coaches have to live with mistakes, he also believes players and teams should get what they earn, but not to the point that the game is stopped for review after every play.
Pena playing time
Yost also announced that Brayan Pena will see a little more action in the remainder of the season. Yost knows, however, that playing time is not a major concern of Pena’s. The manager described Pena as a great team player who understands and accepts his backup role behind Jason Kendall. Additionally, Yost claimed that Pena is the perfect guy for the backup catcher position and is always working hard and getting in as many reps as possible.
Gil Meche bounced back really well today and has plans to play catch, play long toss, and throw a side tomorrow. Should things go as planned, Yost hopes to send the pitcher out on a rehab assignment, probably to Double-A Northwest Arkansas, on Wednesday. According to Yost, Meche is back to feeling good and healthy, though his command is still a bit shaky.
Take it from media relations intern Hillary who was dripping after two minutes into this interview…it’s hot! Yost said that unlike the old days when he was a player, the team is taking valuable precautions to stay healthy in this summer heat, such as by eating right and staying hydrated. In particular, Yost is helping catcher Jason Kendall take special precautions by giving him a day’s rest. Though Kendall nearly always wants to play, Yost is keeping the big picture in mind so that Kendall will be strong and healthy late in the season. Members of the media asked when Jose Guillen might have a day off, but Yost responded that he doesn’t want to remove Guillen from the lineup because he is currently on a 19-game hitting streak, the longest of his career.
With Kendall out of today’s lineup, second baseman Mike Aviles will move into the two-hole. Yost knows that there is a lot more to a successful two-hole hitter than what shows up in the box score. Rather than only looking at hits, the manager looks for someone who can move runners and hit ground balls when needed.
Kanekoa in K.C.
The Royals acquired Kanekoa Texeira off waivers yesterday from Seattle. Yost sees the reliever as a sixth or seventh inning guy and someone who the Royals will use for up to two innings. He talked about Texeira’s sinker and slider (according to Baseball America, the righty had the best slider in the White Sox organization entering 2008). Seattle’s coaching staff had good things to say about Texeira.
Yost was asked about the #2 position in the batting order and using Jason Kendall there vs. Mike Aviles. Yost sees Kendall as a perfect number two hitter. Kendall likes to take pitches and is a good situational hitter. Aviles is more aggressive and Yost doesn’t want the second baseman to alter his game. He believes that Aviles could eventually become a number two hitter in the Majors.
John Parrish threw well in live batting practice today. Rick Ankiel took live batting practice and ran the bases. Yost believes that they could both start rehab assignments next week. Gil Meche is still going through treatments and has not begun to throw.
Moving on up…
Royals Manager Ned Yost hasn’t been known for altering his lineup since becoming the Royals skipper. However, he wanted to give infielder Mike Aviles the night off and decided to move catcher Jason Kendall into the two hole; while tonight’s starting second baseman, Chris Getz, will hit ninth. Yost feels that Kendall is a perfect fit there with Aviles sitting. He said that Kendall’s situational hitting and patience make him a good hitter for the second spot in the lineup.
Live for the Moment…
Yost stressed the importance for his players to focus day-to-day; not allowing the highs and lows of a season to affect their mental approach. He said his players’ concentration should be on what needs to be done to win today’s ballgame and playing every game hard.
Sunny side up…
Yost was asked if his management style is to approach the game from a positive angle. Yost said that he always tries to find the best in any situation because he knows how difficult baseball is to play at the Major League level. He also said that in his experience, if you approach players with their successes it gives you a starting point for which to build off of instead of constantly harping on the negative.
Royals’ Manager Trey Hillman met with the media prior to this afternoon’s game.
Hillman was asked about the health of catcher Jason Kendall:
Kendall’s forearm was x-rayed during last night’s rain delay and the results came back negative. Kendall would not react to the contusion after being hit by a pitch last night and declined to be taken out of the game. Hillman was impressed by Kendall’s gritty toughness, but made the decision to hold him out of today’s lineup.
Hillman also commented on pitcher Blake Wood who made his Major League debut last night:
Hillman is dead-set on keeping Wood in the bullpen; stating the he assessed the young right-hander during Spring Training and that he has the perfect mental make-up to be a successful reliever. When the team broke Spring Training for Opening Day, Hillman was strongly considering Wood for one of the bullpen spots. Had it not been for some forearm issues slowing down Wood, Hillman believes he likely would have broken with the Major League club.
Hillman finished by talking briefly about today’s starting pitcher Zack Greinke:
Hillman thinks that Greinke will be comfortable with today’s starting catcher Brayan Pena. Pena caught Greinke a few times last season, developing a positive rapport between the two. Hillman continued by addressing the lack of offensive contribution during Greinke’s starts this year. A major reason behind the lack of run support is due to hitters putting added pressure on themselves to score runs for the ace pitcher, especially coming of the Cy Young Award.
During manager Trey Hillman’s meeting with the press before Wednesday’s game, he addressed questions concerning Rick Ankiel, John Parrish, Yuniesky Betancourt, and Jason Kendall. Hillman quieted concerns about Ankiel not being in the lineup due to a strained right quad, saying that they are still being cautious with the outfielder. Hillman also noted that everyone in the bullpen is available except for Parrish because he has a sore shoulder.
In regards to Betancourt, Hillman said he is pleased with his improved defense, especially in his ability to take better angles to the left side. According to the manager, Betancourt also seems more focused and has a better sense of urgency this season.
The main topic of the session centered on catcher Jason Kendall’s ability to play day after day, year after year. Kendall will play his 1,927th career game behind the plate today, tying former Royals’ catcher Jim Sundberg for sixth on the all-time career games caught list. When asked how this “iron man” does it, Hillman said it is Kendall’s mindset that keeps him going. He said the catcher expects to play everyday and he does a good job listening to his body as well. Hillman also added that hopefully the next 20 games will be a bit lighter for Kendall.
As last night’s success begins to resonate, Royals’ manager Trey Hillman looks for the bullpen to gain confidence. The Royals were able to hold down an extremely potent Red Sox offense; eventually finishing with one of the game’s top closers, Joakim Soria, securing the win in the ninth. Hillman was questioned on whether he feels his bullpen is beginning to settle into roles. He cited that last night’s effort by all but three backend arms will go a long way into establishing more permanent roles. However, Hillman does not expect anything to be cemented for several weeks.
One specific late-inning arm that Hillman touched on was reliever John Parrish, who has been effective in limited action this year. One reporter asked Hillman if he saw more innings in Parrish’s immediate future. Hillman stated that he could see Parrish being used multiple nights in a row as a situational pitcher used primarily against lefties. But with Parrish’s career being slowed by injuries, the coaching staff must keep a watchful eye on the southpaw.
Hillman was also asked about several hitters that have yet to see significant playing time. Hillman responded that while he would like to get players like Mitch Maier and Mike Aviles in the mix; starters like Getz, Kendall, and Podsednik have shown such promise early this season that he does not want to break their rhythm and playing time will be decided upon a day-to-day basis.
The Royals stormed back for a 4-3 win over Boston tonight. Let’s look at the photos!
Scott Podsednik is a gamer…he put down a great sac bunt to move DeJesus to third.
After a walk to Alberto Callaspo, Willie Bloomquist came in as a pinch runner for “Bert”. Bloomquist stole second base during Billy Butler’s at-bat. That set the table for Rick Ankiel, who was 3-for-3 at the time and a triple shy of the cycle. There’s no need for a cycle when you drive in a pair with a single! Bloomquist came around to score the go-ahead run.
Joakim Soria and Jason Kendall celebrated after Soria’s first save of 2010. Then, it was time for Fireworks Friday presented by Hy-Vee and Pepsi!
With the final game in the series being an early start and last night’s 11-inning game, manager Trey Hillman faced questions about availability of several key pieces. After attempting a four-out save last night and throwing 32 pitches, Hillman said that closer Joakim Soria’s availability is in question and that no decision will be made until after the first pitch is thrown. Hillman’s preference is not to use Soria for more than three outs in future appearances, but cited that the most important factor is winning ball games.
Another question coming into today’s game is the condition of catcher Jason Kendall following last night’s extra-inning affair. Hillman said Kendall felt good this morning and that fans could expect to see the veteran catcher often in day games after night games.
The other question mark today was how Hillman’s lineup would look with the Royals’ hitters facing the first left-handed starting pitcher of the 2010 season in Dontrelle Willis. Hillman had entertained the idea of starting infielder Mike Aviles at second base in place of Chris Getz. However, Hillman penciled in Getz, saying he has shown excellent consistency in producing quality at bats early in the season. The final change affected by Willis’ start is the five and six slots in the batting order. Hillman said that the switch with outfielders Rick Ankiel and Jose Guillen will be commonplace when facing a left-handed starting pitcher.