As beloved wrestling announcer Jim Ross might say, “My God King, the Kansas City Royals have just destroyed the Tigers! This is brutal! Somebody stop the match!”
I jusssssst about popped the bubbly after the Kansas City Royals thrashing of the Tigers before reminding myself that the people need a recap. The world deserves to know what I thought about shellacking.
To no surprise, I thought it was a complete beating on par with pulling some schlub out of the audience to face Mike Tyson in his prime. To a modicum of surprise, I thought it signaled the Tigers players giving up on 2017.
But to my own surprise, I found myself thinking of it as a turning point game in the Kansas City Royals season after a 16-2 thrashing of the Motor City Kitties.
Now winners of eight straight, the Royals have been winning, but they’d only put together one wire-to-wire whipping in that time—a 16-4 dismantling of the Tigers last week. One blowout is an aberration.
Two begets a trend. And it’s a trend that winning teams possess.
How much time do we need to dissect the brutality imparted on the Tigers? Let’s just do a quick glance at the numbers and glean some cold, hard facts:
- The Kansas City Royals batted around twice—in the seventh and ninth innings.
- The Royals only scored in four innings, yet posted 16 total runs.
- The nine runs put up in seventh equaled the season high set in San Diego, June 10.
- The first five batters in the Royals lineup and both of the men who hit in the No. 7 slot (started by Alcides Escobar, ended by Ramon Torres) collected at least two hits.
- Nine different players drove in a run.
- The 22 hits were a season-high.
- Eric Hosmer was a one-man wrecking crew, going 5-for-6 with six RBI and a seventh-inning grand slam, the first of his career.
- Whit Merrifield, Lorenzo Cain and Mike Moustakas each had three hits.
- The team went 13-for-25 with runners in scoring position, ultimately leaving a dozen on base and still winning by 14 runs.
- Only three of the Royals 22 hits went for extra bases.
All the focus on the offense (and well-deserved focus at that) takes a bit of the shine off Ian Kennedy, who was his usual magnificent self nothing short of outstanding in this one. Kennedy scattered three hits and one earned over six innings. He was slightly better than Anibal Sanchez, who is very washed-up and very much not a major league pitcher anymore.
To make a great night even better, we had all the makings of a donnybrook on our hands late when Moustakas took exception to a Bruce Rondon heater to the hip.
Words were exchanged, benches cleared and Danny Duffy made it clear that you didn’t want any of these hands.
Also, Duffy authored a quote that would probably make it into my high school yearbook if I had to go back and do it over again.
Suddenly I am so, so happy these two teams are going to play another 683 times this season.
Hopefully tomorrow’s off-day won’t break up the Kansas City Royals momentum. They return to action Friday seeking a ninth straight win, this time in Boston against the AL East-leading Boston Red Sox.