Results tagged ‘ Miguel Olivo ’
Royals prospect Danny Duffy, currently a member of the Wilmington Blue Rocks, will play for the U.S. squad at the Futures Game, to be held on July 12 in St. Louis as part of Taco Bell All-Star Sunday. The game will be televised live on ESPN2 beginning at 1:00 p.m. CT.
Duffy, KC’s second-round pick in 2007, is 6-2 with a 2.85 ERA this season. He ranks fourth in the Carolina League with 66 strikeouts. He pitched a scoreless inning at the California/Carolina League All-Star Game on Tuesday.
Current Royals John Buck, Billy Butler, Alex Gordon, Zack Greinke and Luke Hochevar have represented the U.S. squad in previous Futures Games. Buck was with the Houston organization when he played in the 2002 Futures Game. Butler took home MVP honors in 2006, becoming the second straight Royal to do so after Justin Huber won in 2005.
Catcher Miguel Olivo played for the World Team in 2000 while in the Oakland system and reliever Juan Cruz represented the World Team in 2001 while he was in the Cubs organization. Right-handed pitcher Julio Pimentel, currently on the 40-man roster, played for the World squad in last year’s contest.
Congratulations to Danny on this honor and best of luck on July 12!
Hopefully you had a chance to watch some of the World Baseball Classic this weekend. Kansas City catcher Miguel Olivo slammed a pair of home runs as the Dominican Republic rebounded from a loss to the Netherlands with a 9-0 rout of Panama.
On the Spring Training front, Kansas City plated all of their runs in the first inning yesterday en route to a 7-1 win over Milwaukee. Today’s game is against the Cubs at HoHoKam Park in Mesa. The contest will air on 610 Sports in Kansas City and on royals.com with a subscription to Gameday Audio. Here’s the lineup:
Mitch Maier – CF
Willie Bloomquist – 2B
Shane Costa – LF
Mike Jacobs – 1B
Billy Butler – DH
Alex Gordon – 3B
John Buck – C
Ross Gload – RF
Tony Pena, Jr. – SS
Brian Bannister – RHP
Luke Hochevar – RHP
Kyle Farnsworth – RHP
Joel Peralta – RHP
Photo credit – Fernando Llano/AP
The Boys in Blue fell a little short against the Rangers on Wednesday, but we saw some positive signs. Kansas City blasted four home runs, something that they didn’t do in a regular season game in 2008. Granted it is Spring Training and the ball seems to travel a bit farther in the Arizona air, but what a start for hitting coach Kevin Seitzer and the offense!
Mike Jacobs went deep in his first game in Royal blue and Billy Butler hit a monster shot above the berm in left-center. Miguel Olivo and Mitch Maier also went yard, no cheapies in their own right. Here are the home run swings, and today’s lineup. Same teams, same time (2:05 Central), with the Royals as the home team today…the game is on 610 Sports in Kansas City. Royals slugger Jose Guillen is expected to make his 2009 debut. Royals beat writer Dick Kaegel had a nice story on Jose today…check it out!
Kyle Davies – RHP
Heath Phillips – LHP
Julio Pimentel – RHP
Joel Peralta – RHP
Carlos Rosa – RHP
Matt Wright – RHP
Oscar Villarreal – RHP
So, quickly, let’s go Around the Horn…
Brandon Duckworth is on the hill, looking to bounce back from his first loss of the season. He’ll look to regain the command he held during his first two Major League starts, both wins over the Tigers. Ducky is 1-1 versus the Twins with a 3.93 ERA in four games (three starts).
Ryan Shealy and Miguel Olivo are back in there today. Both are guys the club is taking a long look at this September, trying to figure out what they’ve got to offer the Royals in the future. Shealy has been on base every game he’s played in so far (four) and Olivo smacked his 12th homer of the season on Tuesday night, which is just four short of his career high (2006 and 2007) despite playing in significantly fewer games.
The Royals have seen a train of lefties as of late, with three throwing during the Oakland series, two more versus the Indians and Minnesota’s Francisco Liriano today. The Royals are 29-21 with a lefty starting for the opposition and factor to see two more lefties during this weekend’s four game series in Cleveland…Trey Hillman will announce his starter for Game 2 of Saturday’s doubleheader later today…Next Thursday game at home versus Seattle will be an FSN-KC broadcast. It is a makeup for the May 3 postponement.
The Burlington Bees are 5-0 in the playoffs and need just two wins to finish off South Bend for the Midwest League Championship. They put together a 6-0 win last night, over the Silverhawks, powered by three home runs and 14 strikeouts thrown by four Bees’ hurlers.
Mike Moustakas, the Royals 2007 No. 1 overall draft pick put Burlington on the board in the third with a three run homer. Jamar Walton and Johnny Giavotella each added a homer and Giavotella also drove in a run on a single.
The Bees were paced by Daniel Gutierrez who three six innings of two-hit ball and fanned 11 while walking one. South Bend only had one other base runner (on an error in the ninth), as the Bees bullpen worked three quick innings of relief, striking out three.
Burlington goes again tonight at 6:30 CT at Community Field (Bee’s broadcast available here).
Today’s Official Game Notes.
Zack Greinke was solid last night, despite a high pitch count early. He struck out five more and is in fifth place in the American League. Greinke’s 151 strikeouts top his own career high by 37 and he’s sure to down a few more with a little more than month left. He also produced his 18th quality start, which is tied for third in the A.L. and is five more than his previous career high.
The team took their annual photo today. Keep an eye out in September. The team is planning on giving out a copy of the photo in some fashion.
Does Gathright need a nickname too?
The spectacular Joey Gathright made another remarkable catch in center last night. Gathright streaked across center and made a phenomenal leaping catch on a ball that was decidedly not a can of corn. It made the top plays and was the No. 1 Web Gem on Baseball Tonight. He just keeps racking them up in center.
Royals first round pick Eric Hosmer played his second game last night in Idaho Falls. The newest Chukar went 2-for-3 with a pair of walks, a double, a run batted in and a run scored. His season stats after two games: .500 average (3-for-6) with two doubles, two RBI, two runs scored, three walks, one strikeout, a .700 on-base percentage and a slugging percentage of .833. He’s only played two, but he’s carrying a big stick so far. The Chukars have 10 games left.
2007 first rounder Mike Moustakas parked his Midwest League-leading 22nd homer of the season last night. Apparently the blast would have been over 400 feet had it not hit the top of the Burlington Community Field Scoreboard. Thanks to wheelerrob, a loyal ATH reader for that info from Burlington!
Another Royals bat with some sock in it right now is Miguel Olivo’s. Olivo is starting again today. Manager Trey Hillman said he likes the way Olivo is working behind the plate right now and he likes what Olivo’s bat brings to the lineup. He smacked a double that short hopped the left field wall last night. Royals broadcaster Ryan Lefebvre said that on most nights that ball probably would have carried out. Regardless, Olivo hit the ball hard and Billy Butler scored from first on the play. Keep any eye out tonight since Miggy loves to swing against Southpaws.
Hardware coming soon
Like we’ve mentioned the past couple days, the minor league seasons are winding down. With that, the minor league awards for Pitcher and Player of the Year will be announced within the next few weeks.
Future(s) coming soon
Yes, that seems redundant, but the Royals’ future is coming to Kauffman Stadium soon. September 19, in fact. That Friday night game versus the White Sox has been tabbed as Futures’ Night. Several of the top players in the Royals system will be on hand for you to meet and get autographs from.
Today’s Official Game Notes.
When the Royals leave Chicago after Thursday’s day game, they will have played the Sox 12 times in 38 days. During those that time, the Royals have played a total of 10 series (four against the White Sox) and had a four-day break for the All-Star festivities..
These two teams are getting to know each other well (and they may not like what they’re finding out?), but have just one matchup left after this week (Chicago comes to town September 19-21). To take a look at the next Sox series and the nine-game, three-city road trip the series starts, let’s go Around the Horn…
The 28-game stretch against .500 clubs that started on July 18 has just two stops and six games left (three against the White Sox and three with the Yankees over the weekend). Despite the tough schedule, the Royals have come away with a respectable 11-11 record.
The Royals can still do some damage in their final two series and despite their position in playoff hunt, they can play spoiler. The Sox are tied in the loss column with the Twins and are a half game back from the division leaders. The Sox, who have controlled the Wild Card and the Central Division at times this season, are two games off Boston’s pace in the race for the final American League playoff spot.
Meanwhile New York had started surging to make a push for the A.L. East, but have now lost four in a row and sit nine games back from first-place Tampa Bay. The Yankees are five back in the Wild Card standings. Time is of the essence for them.
As for the Boys in Blue, we had a good run in each city last time we were there. The Royals split with the Yankees back in early June (and could have had at least one more), creeping back into the final game and slapping future Hall of Famer Mariano Rivera a loss, thanks to homers by Miguel Olivo and a game-winner from Jose Guillen. In fact, Guillen blistered the Yankees with four homers, 10 RBI, two doubles and a .563 average over the four games.
Billy Butler was the story last time the Royals were in the Windy City. Butler helped lead the Royals to a 2-1 series win, homering twice and knocking in seven with a .386 average.
It’s tough to know what the Royals will get in either town. Both teams have been riddled with injuries lately. The most notable losses for the two were starters Jose Contreras (White Sox, out with a ruptured left Achilles’ tendon) and Joba Chamberlain (Yankees, out with rotator cuff tendinitis in his pitching shoulder). Both teams are trying to cope with their losses while trying to stay in the playoff picture.
Around the Horn needs to clean up a few loose ends we’ve neglected the last few days on the pitching side of things. If you haven’t heard, Zack Greinke dropped his appeal. He began serving his suspension (five games for hitting Nick Swisher after a bench clearing incident versus the White Sox) on Sunday and is scheduled to miss his start on Friday. He will be pushed back one day and start Saturday’s day game in New York.
The Royals also traded Horacio Ramirez to the White Sox late Saturday night. In return, the Royals got outfielder Paulo Orlando. Orlando was playing for the Carolina League Winston-Salem Warthogs (the Sox’ Class A Advanced affiliate). Last night he made his Wilmington debut and went 3-for-4 with a double and a triple against his former mates. The Brazilian native is the Carolina League’s leader in triples and he upped the speed quotient of the Blue Rocks.
You might remember Around the Horn posting a while back about the Runnin’ Rocks. Well, Orlando just adds more speed to their lineup. Derrick Robinson leads the Carolina League with 55 steals, followed by teammate Jarrod Dyson with 37 swipes and in third is Orlando with 28. Wilmington has six of the top eight base stealers in the Carolina and six of the top eight triples hitters as well.
The Royals are riding a five-game winning streak on the road and start a nine-game road trip tonight…Mike Aviles has 23 multi-hitters in 55 career games (42 percent of his games)…Lefty Josh Newman was called up Sunday to replace the traded Horacio Ramirez. Newman is wearing No. 63…Tony Pena broke a 0-for-17 slide with his two hits on Sunday…Pena is one of four players to enter a game as a pinch runner this season and deliver a walk-off winner…Joakim Soria tied a career high with four strikeouts in a single outing.
We have some housekeeping of our own to do here at Around the Horn. The long-awaited renovations update is coming as is our Clubhouse photos sneak peak. The media relations staff held a hard hat tour yesterday of the stadium, so we’ve got plenty of material. And as for the sneak peak, the pictures are taking a little longer to edit than we’d hoped (plus the Olympics are distracting!).
Speaking of the Olympics, have you guys been watching? We have. We’ve been watching Team USA basketball rolling and seen Michael Phelps break three world records already. We’re also excited for USA baseball to start tomorrow (TV schedule). Unfortunately the Royals don’t have anybody on this version of team USA or any of the other Olympic teams, though we have in the past. In fact, pitchers Neal Musser and Matt Wright, who are with Triple-A Omaha right now, were members USA Baseball team which won the gold medal over Chinese Taipei during the 2007 World Cup. And Billy Butler helped the USA in a qualifying tournament following the 2006 season.
One final note: The Royals have put together a new ticket package which sells for $40 and includes four View Level tickets (valued at $15 a piece) and a $20 QuikTrip card. The card can be used on gas or merchandise and the retail value of the entire package is $80, but you only pay $40. Is there anything better than getting a deal on both baseball AND gas?
We’ll have a lineup for you later.
Today’s Official Game Notes.
By now you’ve probably heard about Miguel Olivo pinch hitting in the ninth. Two outs, two strikes and he plants one over the fence. You’ve probably also heard about Alex Gordon being intentionally walked and Jose Guillen making the Orioles pay for it.
These are resilient Royals. Down four runs, they started scoring. On top of that, they shut off the Baltimore offense. The score was 6-5 last night and the Orioles didn’t score after the fifth. It’s the second time over their last eight games to come from behind to finish off an opponent. In a wild ride last Sunday, the Royals mounted a seven run comeback to beat the Giants. Even two days ago, they wouldn’t stop. It wasn’t enough to beat the Cardinals, but they started digging out of a five run hole and never gave in.
MLB.com quoted last night’s starter Zack Greinke talking about the resilient Royals: “That’s what we’ve been doing lately. We get behind, and we don’t quit and we come back” Greinke said. “This is several games now where we’ve been behind by a bunch and still find a way to come back.”
Greinke’s right. The Royals have 11 come from behind wins this season.
Sunday marked the first time the Royals had lost back-to-back games since June 11. What did they do last night? They made sure it didn’t become a losing streak. And where? Baltimore of all places, this is the same city in which they had a nine game slide. That’s two Oriole streaks the Royals have broken up this year. The Royals snapped a 12 game-losing streak to the O’s earlier this season at Kauffman and now they are looking to build a winning streak of their own. Right now K.C.’s streak over Baltimore is at two.
The All-Star game is July 16, which is two weeks from today. Tomorrow night, balloting closes. Jose Guillen and Joakim Soria should get huge props for their play the last two months. They were both named Player and Pitcher of the Month for May and June.
Their stats speak for themselves. Guillen tied for third with the most hits in the American League during June. His doubles total has trailed off some of late, but he’s also dealing with some leg issues and he still hit .345 for the month with seven homers (top 10) and 25 RBI (also tied for third). In May, he tied for the lead in double with 11 and knocked in 11.
Soria, at a completely different position, may have been even more dominant. He’s making teams afraid to face him (though the Orioles will probably think twice about intentionally walking someone to get to Guillen in the future). Soria was second in saves in the American League for June (10). Hitters only batted .182 against him during the month. More impressively, in one month, he allowed just eight hits. Eight. May was seven (with a .163 average against him). He has 13 strikeouts in each of the last two months in 25 innings. He’s only given up five runs since the season started.
Notes from Trey Hillman’s press conference: DeJesus is out again tonight but may be ready for late-inning duty and will hopefully be back in the lineup tomorrow…On the Disabled List front: Leo Nunez has live batting practices scheduled this week and could be on a rehab assignment as soon as next week if all goes well…John Bale is progessing, but not as fast as Nunez. He’s still looking at being back sometime after the All-Star break… Here’s a fun stat for the day: The Wilmington Blue Rocks have the top four leaders in stolen bases for the Carolina league, being paced by Derrick Robinson who has 38 steals in 73 games (the highest number not owned by a Blue Rock; 19 steals by John Shelby of the Winston-Salem Warthogs, which is tied with Wilmington’s Chris McConnell).
A few TV clarifactions for you in case you were curious/didn’t know. As we mentioned yesterday, Saturday’s game will be on FSN-KC. It will be a makeup from a rainout on May 22 in Cleveland earlier this season. Royals Live will start at 5:30 with regular coverage at 6.
For Direct TV subscribers in the KC area straight from Geoff Goldman, FSN-KC Media Relations Director: DirecTV is changing its channel numbers for regional sports networks. Beginning Wednesday (July 2), DirecTV subscribers will find Kansas City Royals telecasts on a new channel – 672 (the old channel, through July 1, is 648).
According to information provided by DirecTV, viewers will be directed to the new channel number in the on-screen guide. High definition channel numbers will move with the standard def channel number (i.e. – Royals HD telecasts will be found on 672-1).
Here’s today’s Official Game Notes.
As the Royals continue to roll, they continue to work on fundamentals. Back in Spring Training, Trey Hillman established that the basics are what this team would focus on, doing the little things right.
To find out what little things the Royals are doing now and how they are contributing to their current run of success, we go around the horn…
Two plays stand out from last night’s game that help illustrate that point. Up by three, Miguel Olivo smashed a double into the right field corner, driving home Jose Guillen who was charging hard from second. Olivo beat the throw from Matt Holliday with a slide into second. The hit ended an 0-for-21 slide for the Royals catcher. What was the key of the at bat? Olivo saw 10 pitches. Rockies pitcher Jeff Francis had nothing new left to throw to Olivo. So he threw a pitch Olivo had already seen and Olivo made him pay. Francis left the game and the Royals continued to roll.
Alex Gordon deserves some props for some solid defense in the top half of the fifth. Gordon was able to turn two by simply being aware of the runner on base. Chris Iannetta was on third and Willy Taveras hit a hard bouncer straight at Gordon. Iannetta froze, like most players would, to see where the ball was going. By the time he started to turn, Gordon had quickly applied the tag and fired the ball across to first baseman Ross Gload. Gordon helped out his pitcher Brian Bannister hold down the damage and quickly put the Royals in a more manageable situation with two outs and one runner on base.
Both plays were small in comparison to the 8-4 final score, but take them away and who knows what might have happened.
The team is having fun right now. Of course, winning will do that. But in the Royals’ eighth, Ross Gload hit his first homer since the beginning of September last year. The bench let him know when he got back. Normally the home run hitter finds a dugout full of high-fives awaiting his return. Gload found silence and no one really paying attention to him. The whole bench stiffed him and he was left hanging. But only for a few seconds. The team burst into laughter and Gload got his credit.
Today after a regular pitcher’s fielding practice (PFP) session, about 10 players along with Trey Hillman and Bob McClure started playing a quick-throw game of catch. “The Play-Catch” drill, as MLB.com reported earlier this season, is designed to work on the most basic fundamentals of the game, throwing and catching the baseball. Players scatter around the infield dirt and fire the ball to one-another as quickly as possible. There is no set pattern to throw in. The only rules, don’t drop it, throw as quickly as you can and try not to hit the guy standing on the mound in the head. The infielders played it earlier this season and went nine or 10 minutes without dropping the ball in the fast-paced game.
Today was the pitchers turn. They didn’t last as long, but they seemed to be having fun. And so were the onlookers. Catcher John Buck could be seen just smiling and shaking his head watching the drill near the first base line, while Miguel Olivo stood near the dugout counting
as each ball was caught and laughing as the pitchers scooped and fired. Infielders, for the most part, try not to put any movement on the balls they throw. However, pitchers want life. That can make a throwing drill a little complicated when 6-foot-5 sinkerballer Luke Hochevar lets one fly. Trey Hillman bent and caught one at his ankles and with a smile, yelled “Hoch is throwin’ sinkers over here.”
Over the last ten games, the Royals are 8-2…It’s no coincidence that David DeJesus and Mike Aviles continue to be an offensive force, scoring 18 runs, totaling 28 hits (15 for extra bases, with five being homers) and knocking in 20…The Royals claimed right-handed pitcher Robinson Tejeda off waivers from the Rangers this afternoon, moving John Bale to the 60-day D.L. to make room on the 40-man with another move imminent on the 25-man when Tejeda joins the team, probably tomorrow…Notes from Trey Hillman’s pre-press conference: Mark Grudzielanek is still out with a sore back and is day-to-day…Trey’s assessment on the Royals’ newest pitcher in two words: power arm.
We covered Joakim Soria yesterday but failed to mention that he’s a “cover boy”. Soria is on the cover of Royals Gameday Magazine from June 20 to July 23. Gameday is sold throughout Kauffman Stadium or by calling 1-800-6-Royals and is a monthly 128-page magazine containing insight and inside information on the Royals.
Tonight is the middle game of the Rockies series and a special note should be made that this is their first-ever trip to Kansas City. As we mentioned yesterday, manager Clint Hurdle and bench coach Jamie Quirk are Royals alums. Quirk is a Kansas City resident in the offseason and Hurdle is making his first trip back to K.C. since 1981.
We bring them up again because Quirk is also making an appearance in Gameday this month, under the feature about a Royals alum.
Question for you all tonight… Which Royals alum are you curious about?
Today’s Official Game Notes.