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Sep 27, 2013; Chicago, IL, USA; Kansas City Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer (35) hits a single against the Chicago White Sox during the first inning at U.S Cellular Field. Mandatory Credit: Rob Grabowski-USA TODAY Sports

The 2013 Royals Recap: July

Jul 23, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Bruce Chen (52) delivers a pitch in the first inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

July was a crucial month for the Royals and they continued to play well. They went 15-10 and helped their overall record crawl back to just over .500. Unfortunately, the A.L. Central-leading Tigers were playing even better going 18-8 and actually lengthening their division lead over the Royals. Here’s July:

Offense

As a team, the Royals batted .247/.309/.366/.675 and averaged 3.88 runs a game. Their best offensive performance was a 10-7 victory over the Cleveland Indians on July 4th in which they collected 6 total hits with a 3-run double from Salvador Perez and 3 home runs courtesy of Eric Hosmer, George Kottaras, and Lorenzo Cain

Pitching

The Royals pitching staff (relievers included) threw 223 innings with a 3.83 ERA. They gave up an average of 3.8 runs a game during July and averaged 7.3 SO/game and 2.72 BB/game. Their “best” performance as a staff took place on July 19th. Ervin Santana gave up a no runs through 7.1 innings of work against the Tigers while only allowing 2 hits. Kelvin Herrera and Greg Holland cleaned up the rest as the Royals won 1-0 at Kauffman Stadium.

Overall

The Royals had their second-best month of the year in July and yet, due to the stupid Tigers and their inability to cut us a break, the team actually ended up further back in the divisional race at the end of the month than they did at the start. On July 2nd, the Royals were 5.5 games back of Detroit. On July 31st, the Royals were 7 games back after having won 8 straight. Not the way you want things to go.

Offensive MVP: Eric Hosmer

Eric had a bit of a slow start to 2013, but really turned it on the last three months of the season and it all started in July. He had a slash line of .324/.351/.495/.847 with 6 doubles and 4 home runs.

Pitching MVPs: Bruce Chen (starter) and Luke Hochevar reliever)

Bruce started some games during the second half July and did pretty well. Including just over 5 innings of relief work during the month, Bruce had an ERA of 1.93 with 17 strikeouts and 5 walks and an opposing batter slash of .135/.200/.296/.526 in 23.1 innings of work. He went 1-0 in 3 starts in the month of July.

Luke pitched 10.2 innings in July and had an opposing batter slash line of .119/.174/.162/.362 with 11 strikeouts and 3 walks. He didn’t give up a run in any of his appearances and only allowed 5 hits.

Conclusion

All in all, July was a frustrating month as the Royals lost ground in the division race despite a solid month of winning baseball. At the end of the month they sat in third place behind the Indians and Tigers and needed some help from both of those teams in order to make up some ground.

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