Royals fans: Should we be happy with 3-3 road trip?

Before the Royals headed out on their season-opening six-game, two city road trip (Anaheim, Oakland), I would have been thrilled if the Royals came home with a 3-3 record.

But now that they are 3-3, why am I so disappointed?

After the Royals took two of three in Anaheim, 4-2 seemed like a real possibility, as the A’s lineup is one of the worst in baseball.

Instead, the Royals go out and lose 1-0 on Monday then in unbelievable fashion Wednesday afternoon losing 5-4 in 12 innings after big Jon Broxton allowed two runs to score without giving up a hit OR a ball leaving the infield. A strikeout then an Alcides Escobar error and Broxton was never the same. Instead of two outs, nobody on, it was one out with a runner on first. Then he walked two batters, loading the bases. He got a Coco Crisp grounder, tying the game but getting the second out – which would have been the third and the game would have been over. He then hits Yoenis Cespedes on the first pitch and followed that up by hitting Johnny Gomes on the first pitch. GAME OVER.

Are you freaking kidding me? Back-to-back hit batters to force in a run? A walk-off hit by pitch? Comical.

Then it all started: The same old Royals.

Was it a terrible loss? Sure. But this is not the same old Royals.

In reality, the Royals being 3-3 is just fine, as in the past we would have come home with a 1-5 record. But the Royals could very well be 5-1. I guess the good news is the Royals were in every game and COULD have won ALL of them. But Wednesday’s loss hurt. I think with a win the city would have really been buzzing.

AL Central Standings

W L PCT GB STRK
Detroit 5 1 .800 0 Lost 1
Chicago 3 2 .600 1 Won 2
Kansas City 3 3 .500 1.5 Lost 1
Minnesota 2 4 .250 3 Won 2
 Cleveland 1 4 .200 3 Won 1

Another reason we should be happy with a 3-3 start is the Royals really haven’t started to hit. They are averaging just 3.33 runs per game after a week, third worst in the American League. As a team, our Royals have a .227/.274/.399 line. Really, all the offense has done is hit for a little bit of power (14 doubles – first in the AL, 7- HRs, tied for third). The Royals have faced two good staffs and have played half their games in Oakland.

Eric Hosmer who hit homers in back to back games against the Angels, snapped an 0-11 in his last at-bat in Oakland with a single, scoring the go-ahead run, raising his average to .200. Alex Gordon started 0-18 before getting an RBI seeing-eye single in his second AB Wednesday, then followed it up with a blast to dead center to tie the game at 3-3 in the seventh inning. He is batting .091. Lorenzo Cain, who is now on the DL, opened the season 2-for-15 and is batting .133. Mike Moustakas has two extra base hits – including a HR – but has only one other hit and is hitting .158. The foursome has struck out 25 times. The rest of the team has struck out just 12 times.

It has actually been the starting pitching, which was expected to be the weakness of the team, that has kept the team afloat. In all six games, the starters have given the team a chance to win. They are 3-1 overall with a collective 1.85 ERA. That is WAY more than we can ask for out of this bunch of back-of-the-rotation starters. The bullpen on the other hand has been shaky, but Royals pitchers are allowing just 2.83 runs per game, second best (behind Texas) in the AL. At 8.5 K/9, the team is striking out batters at the second highest rate in the league. Aaron Crow is currently striking out 18 per 9, which, yes, would be a RECORD.

Pretty amazing that a team scoring 3.33 is outscoring their opponents by a half run.

So, they’ve played six games, and have done ok. At this point, I’d like to see the team orbit around .500 for as long as possible. That’s where we are, but the longer the better. Royals HAVE to have a better-than-.500 homestand.

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