It’s fairly safe to say that no one saw the Royals pulling this off. We have seen teams go on streaks quite a few times this year, both winning ones and losing ones. Still, the Royals look good. They look really good.
It’s been over a decade since the Kansas City team has been atop the A.L. Central this late in the season and they put themselves there Monday defeating the Detroit Tigers by a score of 11-4. Not only was it a high scoring game, but 10 of the Royals’ 11 runs came off of reigning Cy Young Award winner Max Scherzer.
Right about now Scherzer may just be rethinking turning down the reported $144 million contract extension offered to him by the Tigers prior to the season. Not that he has pitched all that poorly this year, but his pitching hasn’t been the Cy Young Award caliber pitching we saw last season. Scherzer made it through just four innings Monday allowing ten runs on ten hits, two of them home runs.
The Royals were hitting, that much is obvious. Every player who stepped up to the plate in the game got at least one hit, with the exception of Eric Hosmer who was still able to drive in a run. Alex Gordon and Mike Moustakas delivered the Royals’ two long balls as part of a seven run second inning.
The game was pretty much over after that. Detroit did somehow manage to get ten hits off of the Royals’ pitching staff, but were only able to push across just two runs in the bottom of the second, one in the fifth and one in the eighth inning. Yordano Ventura pitched a full seven innings surrendering eight hits, three earned runs and two walks while striking out four before being relieved by Louis Coleman. Coleman surrender the Tigers’ final run and Aaron Crow closed out the game.
Defensively the Royals were on their game as well. They turned four double plays and had just one error by Alcides Escobar. However ever Escobar made up for that minor error by going 3-5 at the plate and scoring three runs.
“It’s nice. We’ve got a lot of games to play. We don’t get all geeked up,” Yost said. “It’s better than the alternative, trust me.”
Yes, a nine game winning streak added to being in first place in the A.L. Central is much better than any alternative really, especially for the Royals who are playing like they want to take the division away from the Tigers. As Yost mentioned, however, there are still “a lot of games to play,” but if the Royals continue on the path they are currently taking they may just win their division for the first time since they last won the World Series in 1985.