A vastly improved KC Royals pitcher should help things improve in June.
No one doubts former first-round draft pick Brady Singer’s potential or desire. His usually calm (but occasionally expressive) mound presence at least partially conceals the competitive fire that apparently burns fiercely within.
Until recently, though, something, probably a well-chronicled reluctance to trust the changeup he rarely threw, prevented Singer’s performance from equaling his potential. Despite being a rotation member the past two seasons, he came into this campaign with an unremarkable 9-15 record.
And when Opening Day arrived, Singer had slipped out of the rotation and into the bullpen, from which he made only three appearances before the Royals sent him down to Omaha. His assignment was clearly to prepare for resuming his starter’s role and to work on that underused changeup.
Probably forced by his employer to further develop the pitch, Singer used it well as a Storm Chaser. He went 1-0 with a 3.29 ERA before temporarily returning to Kansas City to throw the nightcap of a doubleheader against the White Sox; he was superb, earning his first win of the season by holding the Sox scoreless and striking out nine in seven innings.
Then, after a required short return to Omaha, Singer came back to the Royals and threw another scoreless seven frames against Minnesota 11 days ago, and picked up his second win last Saturday by striking out eight in 5.2 innings to beat the Twins again.
So it is that the Royals’ rotation now includes Singer. He seems to have found himself and, at 2-0, 2.49, is in line to start against Houston when Kansas City opens a 10-game homestand Friday evening.
If he continues to pitch like he did in May, June should be much brighter for the Royals.
If Salvador Perez starts hitting, Vinnie Pasquantino gets to Kansas City and plays like he has in the minors, and Brady Singer continues to pitch like everyone always knew he could, the Royals should be better in June than they were in May.