The Royals played well for most of the game Monday but it only takes one appearance from Brad Boxberger for the game to turn into a loss. This isn’t the first time. The Royals need to let him go or at least move him to insignificant innings. There is no excuse for letting him lose games for this team any longer unless they are trying to tank without being obvious about it.
Heath Fillmyer pitched much better than his first start against Seattle. Fillmyer was aggressive and attacked the batters this time and it was largely successful. He ran into some bad luck in the fifth but it was a very positive outing for Fillmyer.
Joel Goldberg was all over Brad Boxberger in the postgame show as he should be. This situation needs to be addressed.
Whit Merrifield [0-for-3, RBI, BB, .847 OPS]
Whit came through with a sacrifice fly in the seventh inning to score Billy Hamilton and give the Royals a 4-3 lead.
Adalberto Mondesi [0-for-4, K, .833 OPS]
Mondesi showed off his strong arm in the third inning. He fielded a deep ground ball by Yoan Moncada and fired the ball on a line to first to get Moncada by a step. This kid is impressive in all aspects of the game.
Alex Gordon [1-for-4, 2B, 1.069 OPS]
Gordon fought off several pitches in the fifth until he finally hit a double to left. This is some of the best hitting of his career.
Gordon’s defense continues to be exceptional. In the fifth inning he dove to catch a line drive hit by Welington Castillo. He then got up and threw to first base to double up Tim Anderson. Anderson was ruled safe after a replay review but the play was outstanding by Gordon. How does Gordon retire after this season if he keeps this offense and defense up all season?
Hunter Dozier [2-for-3, R, RBI, BB, K, 2B, HR, CS, .959 OPS]
Dozier hit the first pitch he saw for a home run to center. He then had a two out double down the left field line.
Ryan O’Hearn [0-for-4, K, .715 OPS]
O’Hearn could use a little defensive work at first base. He doesn’t stretch for the ball as much as he should on close plays at first. It might have cost the Royals on two double play opportunities in the fifth inning. The throw from Gordon was tougher to stretch for because of the runner sliding back into the bag but he still could have done more than he did. Then on a potential 6-4-3 double play he should have stretched further. Not getting either of those double plays cost the Royals at least one run.
Chris Owings [2-for-3, R, 2 RBI, BB, HR, .612 OPS]
Owings is doing much better at the plate in the past week. He hit a one out fastball to right center for a two-run home run in the second inning. He then singled to center with Lucas Duda on first and nobody out in the fourth.
Martin Maldonado [1-for-3, K]
Maldonado hit a one out double to right center in the second. He is gradually looking better at the plate. He won’t be an offensive force for the Royals but he does need some improvement there.
Billy Hamilton [0-for-3, R, BB, K, SB, .503 OPS]
Hamilton’s speed was the weapon the Royals had hoped for in the seventh inning of a tied game. Hamilton walked to lead off the inning. He then stole second base and advanced to third on a throwing error. He then scored on a sacrifice fly by Whit Merrifield.
Heath Fillmyer [46 GS, 5 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, BB, 2 K, 79-51 (65%), 1.20 WHIP]
Fillmyer’s first inning looked much different than his first outing against Seattle. In this game he started by attacking the batters. He struck out the first two and had Jose Abreu down 0-2 before he hit a tough ball to Whit Merrifield for an infield single.
Fillmyer struggled throwing strikes in his first outing because he was nibbling around the strike zone. In this game his first walk didn’t occur until there was one out in the fifth inning. This walk also gave the White Sox their first runner in scoring position in the game. This was a completely different start for Fillmyer.
Scott Barlow [2 IP, 2 H, BB, 4 K, 36-24 (67%), 1.50 WHP]
Barlow relieved Heath Fillmyer to start the sixth. Barlow was tough on White Sox hitters. He struck out four in two innings.
Brad Boxberger [L, IP, 2 H, 2 R, 2 ER, BB, 21-11 (52%), 3.00 WHIP]
It’s time for Boxberger to go or at least be moved to insignificant innings. In this game he allowed a lead off double followed by a home run to give the White Sox a 5-4 lead.