The 2013 KC Royals Recap: April
By Ethan Evans
The MLB offseason is as frustrating for me as I’m sure it is for all of you baseball-lovers out there. Granted, there is excitement in the form of players signing/getting traded, but the constant spewing of scenarios and possibilities for the various free agents around the league sort of wears me down after awhile.
That’s why I like to take the time at the end of the year and review the season month by month. It’s interesting to remember different things that happened throughout the year and how I felt at various points during the progression of the season. Also, I get to complain a lot which is almost as important as breathing to me. You’re a Royals fan. You understand.
So here’s April:
As a team, the Royals batted .265/.321/.393/.715 and averaged 4.3 runs a game. This was a good enough for a winning record for the month, but wasn’t necessarily overwhelming. Their best* offensive performance was a 13-4 win against Philadelphia on April 5th in which they collected 19 hits total with 7 of those being of the extra-base variety.
*My “best” offensive/pitching performance decisions are based on a quick eyeball of the month’s slate of games. You might have a different opinion and mine certainly isn’t law.
The Royals pitching staff (relievers included) threw 212.2 innings with a 3.30 ERA. They gave up an average 3.8 runs a game with 3.2 of those runs being earned. They averaged 8.4 SO/game and 2.7 BB/game. Their best performance as a staff was arguably the first game of the year against the White Sox in Chicago. James Shields, Aaron Crow, and Kelvin Herrera combined for 8 innings with 9 strikeouts and 1 earned run coming on a solo home run given up by Shields in the bottom of the 5th inning. Unfortunately, The White Sox staff edged them out with Chris Sale, Nate Jones, Matt Thornton, and Addison Reed combining for 9 shutout innings with 9 strikeouts of their own.
The Royals ended up with a 14-10 record for the month and had started the year off positively. It depends on your interpretation of “important,” but I’d say the most important game of the month occurred on April 20th. The Red Sox were back home and were playing the Royals just a day after the first game of series was postponed due to a city-wide lockdown as the search for and eventual apprehension of the second Boston Marathon bombing suspect continued. In an emotional game, the Red Sox eventually came away with a 4-3 win after a 3-run eighth inning. I hate losing, but to see how excited and emotional the Red Sox players and fans were afterwards was a pretty cool sight.
Offensive MVP: Lorenzo Cain
LoCain had a solid month with a slash line of .325/.382/.442/.824 with 6 doubles and a home run.
Pitching MVPs: James Shields (starter) and Luke Hochevar (reliever)
James had an ERA of 3.00 with 39 strikeouts and 11 walks and an opposing batter slash of .225/.268/.318/.586 in 42 innings. He also went 3-3 if you’re in to wins and losses.
Luke only had 8 and 2/3 innings pitched in April but he had a opposing batter slash line of .200/.273/.333/.606 with 11 strikeouts and 3 walks while only giving up one earned run. He was looking a lot better in his revamped role as a reliever.
(That’s it for April. Next time I’ll be taking a look at the dreaded month that was May. Brace yourselves.)