Kansas City Royals: Montgomery struggles in series loss to Orioles

(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images)
(Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images) /

Two starts removed a 12 strikeout performance, Mike Montgomery and the Kansas City Royals struggled in the series finale against the Baltimore Orioles.

When the Kansas City Royals made the trade to acquire swingman starter Mike Montgomery in exchange for Martin Maldonado last month, it made a ton of sense. Montgomery expressed interest in being a starter again despite remaining in the bullpen for the Chicago Cubs, who were in need of a backup catcher.

He (Montgomery) took the loss in his first start with the Royals against the Cleveland Indians, allowing 5 earned runs while only striking out 1 batter in 6.0 innings of work. He had a career-best 12 strikeouts in the start against the Tigers back on August 10 but has struggled to find consistency.

It was more of the same last night in the series finale loss in Baltimore. The Royals, who won the first game of the series, saw their offense go cold in the final two games but Montgomery certainly didn’t help his own cause. He tossed 5.0 innings and allowed 8 hits, 5 earned runs, 3 walks and only struck out 3 batters.

He allowed home runs to Jonathan Villar in the 2nd inning as well as to Anthony Santander and Renato Nunez in the 5th inning.

His ERA sits at 4.63 on the season and he really struggled to find his command against the Orioles. Only 58 of his 91 total pitches were called for strikes. It will be interesting to see if his next start is pushed back a day as Danny Duffy could potentially make his return to the rotation on Friday in Cleveland.

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Duffy, 30, hasn’t pitched August 3 after suffering a hamstring injury, but he did toss a 65 pitch simulated game on Tuesday. Prior to the series with Cleveland, the Royals will need to complete their suspended game in Boston Thursday afternoon.