Toronto at Kansas City, June 6-8

Monday, June 06 2022 @ 02:30 PM EDT

Contributed by: Magpie

I might take a train
I might take a plane
But if I have to walk
I'm going just the same

You know why? It's the thought of hitting against this pitching staff. That's quite the temptation, one difficult to resist, and of course the only way to get rid of a temptation is to give in to it.

It's not just that the Royals are bad. Which they are. Have you even heard of any of these pitchers? Besides Joel Payamps, and him only because he was a Blue Jay for a few months last season? Oh, you're all familiar with Zack Greinke and Amir Garrett, but they're on the IL. If you've been paying close attention, you're probably aware of Brad Keller, but it's likely that five seasons of hard time in Royal blue simply gets to you after a while. Keller has managed to win 30 games in the AL over those five seasons, which is more than the other four members of the rotation combined.

It's not just that they're bad, well on their way to losing more than 100 games yet again. Here's what I would find especially alarming if I cheered for this team, which I never have and never will. Catcher Sal Perez is 32, he's caught more than 1,000 major league games, and he carries more weight than Alejandro Kirk. He may have led the AL in HRs and RBIs just last year, but sooner or later it was all going to catch up with him. First Baseman Carlos (Evil Ways) Santana is 36, and now three years removed from his last good season. Centre fielder Michael Taylor is 31, and he's five years removed from his single good season. And right fielder-second baseman Whit Merrifield is 33, and this is the fifth consecutive year that his offensive output has declined.

There are, basically, two bright spots - left fielder Andrew Benintendi appears to have recovered the early promise he showed in Boston, just in time to hit the free agent market next winter. And rookie Bobby Witt has fought the league to a draw after a rough first week. Witt has moved back to his natural spot at shortstop after beginning the year at third - he was blocked for a while by Adalberto Mondesi (why?), but Mondesi tore his ACL at the end of April and is done for the year. After messing around for a while with Nicky Lopez at short (again, why?) Mike Matheny finally put Witt in place, where he should remain for the foreseeable future.

Well, the Royals are usually bad. Yes, once upon a time they were the model expansion team. That was some fifty years ago. They built a genuinely great team, that eventually - well past the prime of that great team - managed to win a championship. But for more than a generation now, they've been generally awful (save for a three year stretch of genuine goodness when they - gulp - went and won another championship.) They've lost more than 100 games six times since the 2000s commenced. Again, six times! No other franchise - not the Pirates, not the Orioles, not even the Astros -  has had more than three 100 loss seasons since we started writing 20-- at the beginning of the date. The Royals have been that bad six times. The Colorado Rockies have never lost 100 games. Neither have the Angels of Anaheim, who started playing in 1961. The New York Yankees have - well, no they haven't. They were the New York Highlanders back in 1912, the last time they lost 100 games. The Dodgers and the Cardinals? Last time for both franchises was in 1908.

Kansas City? Six times in twenty years. Ewing Kauffman must be turning over in his grave.

And you know what this means, don't you? This is a trap series coming up if I've ever seen one. The Kansas City Royals messing with the Blue Jays is a bad movie I've seen too many times.

I Have The Fear.


Mon 8 June - Stripling (1-1, 4.22) vs Lynch (2-4, 4.81)
Tue 9 June - Manoah (6-1, 1.98) vs Keller (1-6, 4.15)
Wed 10 June - Kikuchi (2-2, 3.91) vs Singer (2-1, 4.15)