July was a little easier on the eyes for Royals fans. If going 13-14 can be considered “easier on the eyes.”July 1st- July 31th
(At least 3 games started)
The moderate boost in success in July had nothing to do with the Royals starting pitching.* The Royals “boasted” an E.R.A. of 5.02, almost half of a run more than they gave up in June…..when the Royals went 9-18. I’m a broken record, but they stunk.
July MVP(s) of the month (SP): Jeff Francis– He hadn’t been that bad of a pitcher all year and was really good during July. The 9.85 K/9 is a little fluky though. He wasn’t and isn’t a strikeout guy, but he was hitting his spots and making guys miss this month
July Ugly Duckling(s) of the month (SP): Kyle Davies and Bruce Chen– I can give Bruce a little leeway here, he was just getting back from injury, but he wasn’t good. Again, the thing with Davies was his innings. Okay I take that back. There were a lot of “things” when it came to Davies. But if you don’t pitch well the least you can do is grind out some innings. He barely averaged 5 per outing.
Youth often equals lack of control and that was still the case for some of the Royals relievers. On the other hand, several pitchers had really solid months. Overall, however, the bullpen was good again and continued to legitimize itself as a consistent producer.
July MVP(s) of the month (RP): Greg Holland – Holland tossed another solid month as a key component in the bullpen. He showed strikeout ability and solid control while throwing the most innings out of all bullpen pitchers.
Avg./OBP/SLG/OPS with at least 40 plate appearances
The Royals scored more runs this month and that’s what led to an improved record. They went from 3.7 runs a game to 4.8. That’s a nice little jump and helped to balance out the poor pitching.*
*As much as it could anyways.
July Ugly Duckling(s) of the month (Offensive): Mike Moustakas – Moose slumped and he slumped hard. It was natural for him to struggle as he adjusted to big league pitching but that didn’t make it any easier to watch.
Starting Pitching – Francis = good…everyone else was crummmmmy. If Duffy could have just stopped walking guys….
Relief Pitching – Still pretty solid as a whole and Greg Holland was NASTY.
Hitting – Gordon just kept on being dominant in the leadoff spot while Cabrera and Franceour continued to suprise. Hosmer started to settle in a little bit and there was hope that Moustakas could eventually find his way.
Overall – The Royals were better in July than they had been in June. That being said, they still ended up with a record just under .500. The pitching was really disappointing. It almost got to the point where I was glad when our starters got bounced so I could watch our bullpen work. And boy oh boy was Alex Gordon good. That guy was so fun to watch, I didn’t even mind that he was making me look like a fool for all the times I’d mocked him. Good show, Alex.