KC Royals: Exciting first month launched 2021 season

(Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)
(Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images) /
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KC Royals, Josh Staumont
(Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports) /

Some excellent pitching paved the way for the KC Royals’ fast 15-9 start.

Although they struggled later in the season, Kansas City’s pitchers got off to a hot start in April.

In the first series against Texas, the bullpen had a stingy 2.20 ERA, allowing just four runs, and struck out 24 in 16.1 innings. Jake Brentz was superb for the month, posting a 1.86 ERA with 11 strikeouts in 9.2 innings. Kyle Zimmer also did well with a 3.38 ERA and 12 strikeouts in 13.1 innings, and Scott Barlow has a 2.40 ERA with 18 strikeouts in 15 frames.

But the best April reliever was probably Josh Staumont, who notched an 0.68 ERA, .071 OBA, 0.60 WHIP, and 12 strikeouts in 13.1 innings.

As for the starting rotation, Brad Keller had a forgettable month. His ERA was 9.00, opposing hitters batted .366 against him, and he allowed 30 hits in 18 innings. Mike Minor’s ERA was 5.26, although he had a monster outing in Detroit when he struck out nine in 5.2 innings.

Brady Singer had a decent start to the year with a 3.09 ERA, .216 OBA, 1.20 WHIP, and 26 strikeouts in 23.1 innings.

Danny Duffy was even better.

Starter Danny Duffy was named the KC Royals Pitcher of the Month for April.

Just as Perez’ stellar play enabled him to win Player of the Month for April, Duffy’s excellent pitching earned him the team’s Pitcher of the Month award for the seventh time in his career. Only Zack Greinke and Joakim Soria have won the award more times (eight) and Duffy’s seven ties him with Kevin Appier.

Duffy allowed just one earned run the entire month, giving him a microscopic 0.39 ERA to go along with a 3-1 record, .212 OBA, 1.04 WHIP, and 27 strikeouts in 23 innings. He had back-to-back eight-strikeout performances against the Rays and Tigers to finish the month.

Duffy’s ERA was the best in any month for a Kansas City pitcher, breaking Greinke’s 0.50 in his 2009 CY Young season.

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The Royals got off to a hot start to begin the 2021 season. April was a month of reaching milestones, breaking Opening Day records, and solid starts for Salvador Perez and Danny Duffy.