Results tagged ‘ Kevin Appier ’

Zack facts

7-29 Greinke.jpgReminder – Saturday’s game starts at 3:10 and can be seen on the FOX Network.  Here are some Zack stats to get you ready for tomorrow.

  • Greinke enters with 237 strikeouts.  He needs eight K’s to move past Dennis Leonard’s single-season club record of 244, set in 1977.  Zack has struck out eight or more in half of his 32 starts.


  • His ERA is currently 2.06.  He would have to go at least 7.0 innings without an earned run to have an ERA that would round to 1.99 or less.  No pitcher in the American League has had that low an ERA since Pedro Martinez posted a 1.74 ERA in 2000 for Boston.  In addition, no pitcher has posted an ERA in Zack’s range while throwing at least 220 innings since Martinez (1.90) and Roger Clemens (2.05) in 1997.


  • Zack has a good shot to post the best ERA in Royals history.  Roger “The Spider” Nelson compiled a 2.08 ERA in 1972.


  • Greinke is 4-0 with a 0.43 ERA in his last six starts.


  • Zack has held the opponent to zero or one earned run in 18 of 32 starts, including 10 starts with no earned runs allowed.


  • His ERA after the All-Star Break is 1.97.


  • He had a 1.70 ERA at Kauffman Stadium this season, the best in Royals history.


  • Has allowed just 11 home runs in 223.1 innings, an average of 0.44 per nine innings, the best mark by a Royal since Kevin Appier in 1993


  • Greinke can reach 17 wins, which would tie Paul Byrd’s total from 2002 as the most in a season by a Royals hurler since Kevin Appier’s 18 in 1993.

Uniform Numbers: 55


6-21 Meche.jpgKansas City’s Opening Day starter, Gil Meche, wears number 55. Who else has worn the double nickel? Let’s take a look…

This number wasn’t issued for the first 20 seasons of Royals baseball…in the last 20 seasons, eight KC pitchers have suited up in 55. Kevin Appier was the first to don the number in 1989.  APPIER-KEVIN_04.JPGThe ace right hander kept the number through the 1995 season. Appier switched to 17 for the ’96 season. Bullpen coach Guy Hansen, who signed Appier in 1987, took the number 55 for the 1996 season.

Appier donned 17 until he was traded to Oakland in 1999. He took back number 55 upon rejoining the Royals in 2003. In the interim, Allen McDill, Tim Byrdak, Mac Suzuki, Tony Cogan, and Nate Field wore 55.

After Appier’s second stint in KC, 55 stayed on the shelf until 2006, when righty Joe Nelson claimed the number.

Meche signed with the Royals in December, 2006, and the number has been his ever since.

Would the real Billy Butler please stand up

9-3 Butler.jpgHe’s tearing up opponents right now. Last night he hit his third homer in the team’s last three games.

Not surprisingly they’ve won 2 of 3, notching victories in the games in which he’s gone yard.

Today we’re going to talk about Butler, who has the second highest average in the Majors over his last eight since August 24 (.500, Boston’s Dustin Pedroia is at .512) and note something that hasn’t happened since 1999. To do that, let’s go Around the Horn…

Part of Billy Butler’s surge can be attributed to “letting go.” Manager Trey Hillman told reporters that Butler said twice during batting practice in Detroit that he needed to “let it go.” Hillman said Butler felt like he was feeling for things too much. He repeatedly said to himself “I got to let it go.”

Apparently he has. Butler is in the midst of an eight-game hitting streak, though you could call it a hitting barrage. He’s 16-for-32 during the streak and has an RBI for every game in the streak. Last night he cracked a deep shot to left-center for a three-run homer and added another RBI later, tying a season high with four RBI. He also put together his seventh three-hit game.

Butler has been pretty solid since the All-Star break, though his average drooped slightly, he’s re-adjusted to the league and is turning things on in a big way. He’s raised his batting average a full 20 points since the streak started and is now at .281.

Last season Butler hit eight dingers and 52 RBI. This year he’s at 10 and 50 and the team has 25 games left.

9-3 Greinke.jpgSecond
Zack Greinke pitched his way to his 10th victory of the season last night. Not only is that good news for Greinke, who continues to add to his career year (he’s at career bests in wins, quality starts, strikeouts and after last night, ERA), but it’s great news for the Royals.

Greinke is tied with Gil Meche in wins and it’s the first year the Royals have had two double-digit game winners since 1999, when Jose Rosado and Jeff Suppan both tallied 10. Greinke’s strikeouts are also the most for a Royal since Kevin Appier put down 196. If Greinke punches out an average of seven or eight an outing for the rest of the season, he’s got a shot to challenge Appier’s total or even push for 200.

It’s a tall order, but he’s been mowing them down all season and produced eight K’s last night. So he’s definitely got the ability to do it.

6-23 Soria.JPGShort
Joakim Soria recorded the 51st save of his career and moved into fifth all-time on the Royals career saves list, passing Mike MacDougal who had 50. Soria needs 3 more to catch Roberto Hernandez at fourth and seven to match Doug Bird in third. After Bird, the all-time saves list gets a little tougher. Soria is 187 shy of Dan Quisenberry in second and he needs 253 to catch Jeff Montgomery who sits in first…Billy Butler became the sixth Royal to reach double-digits in homers. It’s the most since the 2003 team had eight guys with 10 or more…Ryan Shealy hit his first home run in his first game back in the Majors. His last MLB game was June 27, 2007 and his last homer was June 6, 2007…From Trey Hillman’s Press Conference: Hillman trusts Ron Mahay when he says he’s ready to pitch, but he will be careful in using Mahay. Expect to see him in less stressful situations and earlier in ball games to start…Also: Hillman said he studies the statistics and compares his club with others. As far as bullpen usage, he said the Royals are comparable and he likes where the relievers are set up at the moment and will continue to “go with the hot hand in the eighth”…Finally: There’s been a lot of speculation about Mike Aviles’ status next season. Hillman said he’s comfortable playing Aviles at short or second. During Spring Training he would have said he’d prefer to have Aviles at second, but Aviles didn’t play much short in Arizona. Now Hillman would say short, but he’s seen more of Aviles at short than second now. Hillman also complemented Alberto Callaspo on his defensive work at second, specifically the double play he turned on Saturday.

Having the A’s in town doesn’t totally feel like a road trip for a few of their players. Mike Sweeney, the 13-year Royal9-3 Sweeney.jpg and one-time captain in Kansas City, was activated today from the Disabled List. Sweeney chose to wear No. 5 this season for the Athletics, in honor of the lone Royal player in Cooperstown, George Brett. Sweeney exchanged lineup cards last night during the pre-game conference.

Sweeney has a familiar face in the visiting clubhouse. Former Royal Emil Brown is now with Oakland, but he was not in the lineup last night.

Other A’s with local ties: Reliever Brad Ziegler pitched at Odessa High School and Missouri State University in Springfield. Reliever Josh Outman, who made his Major League debut last night, pitched at the University of Central Missouri in Warrensburg. And reliever Joey Devine is from Junction City, Kansas, and we noticed a littler cheering section for him during last night’s game.

Tonight’s lineup: As Around the Horn was finishing this post, we heard the game was called. You can still enjoy the notes which were for today’s game.

The game will be made up tomorrow at 4:10. Brian Bannister is still scheduled to throw and Kyle Davies will throw the second game of the double-dip.

Today’s Official Game Notes.

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