The offense struggled again Monday night. The Royals did put up four runs but did that on just four hits. Adalberto Mondesi had two of those hits. Four runs should be enough to win some games but not tonight.
The pitching wasn’t any better. Brad Keller did not look like himself. It was his first start since his suspension. Essentially his start was just pushed back a couple of days because of the suspension but it looked like he had not been on the mound for a month.
Adalberto Mondesi hit a two-run triple in the fourth to cut the Tampa Bay lead to 4-2. Mondesi pulled the ball to right field.
Alex Gordon had a hard line drive to center for a sacrifice fly scoring Mondesi and cutting the Royals’ deficit to 4-3.
Jorge Soler hit a monster shot beyond the fountains in left center in the seventh to pull the Royals within one at 5-4
Kelvin Gutierrez singled up the middle to score Hunter Dozier from second base with two outs in the ninth inning.
Chris Owings is not a center fielder. Can we agree on that? They can put anybody out there. That doesn’t mean they should. Ned can tell himself that Owings can play center but he is wrong. The Arizona Diamondbacks might have played Owings there one season but they were also wrong. We saw tonight how he does not track the ball very well.
Brad Keller made his first start since serving his five game suspension for intentionally hitting Tim Anderson of the Chicago White Sox. … Keller struggled throwing strikes in the first inning and threw almost 30 pitches in that inning because of it. … The poor control continued in the second inning. This was not like Keller to struggle so much with his control. He was pulling a lot of pitches towards the left hand batter’s box like he was just releasing it late. … Keller got through the fourth inning on just six pitches. After pitching well in the third and fourth innings, Keller struggled again in the fifth inning. He allowed one run in the fourth and was done for the night.
Brad Boxberger entered the game to start the sixth. He got through two innings on just 17 pitches. He struck out two and didn’t allow a base runner.
Jake Diekman relieved Scott Barlow with two outs and a runner on second in the eighth. Diekman’s first pitch resulted in an RBI base hit to extend Tampa Bay’s lead to 6-4.
Wily Peralta allowed two hits two walks and two runs in his one inning of work. The Royals can’t release the entire bullpen so Peralta and others will stick around but they are painful to watch.