Spring Training games started on Sunday, and man is it strange. Spring games are never about winning and losing, but the rules put in place by Major League Baseball this year take some getting used to, and we saw them in game one.
The first couple of weeks this spring, games will be limited to seven innings unless the managers both agree to more or less. On Sunday, the Royals played just six innings against the Texas Rangers. Mike Matheny and the Royals wanted to play nine innings. Texas wanted to play just six because of a pitching injury. So the teams agreed to play six, and the Royals played three intrasquad innings afterward to get their nine innings in.
And then there are the innings limits. If a pitcher reaches his pitch count in an inning, the team in the field can call the inning. And that hit the Royals twice in their first game. Twice the Royals loaded the bases, and both times, the Rangers ended the inning. It is confusing for the fans completely understandable. Spring games have never been about winning and losing. It’s all about just getting ready for opening day.
So one game is down and we are one game closer to real baseball.
Royals 3, Rangers 2 (Box Score)
2:05pm – MLBST – Kansas City Royals at Cleveland Indians (610AM)
The Royals are reportedly close to finalizing a contract extension with Hunter Dozier for four years and $25 million. The contract would also include a one-year club option for $10 million. The deal would cover Dozier’s arbitration years and up to two years of free agency. The contract has escalators and bonuses that make it worth up to $49 million.
The Royals and Rangers played just six innings on Sunday instead of the planned seven because Texas P Luis Ortiz had an ankle injury and could not pitch. The Royals played three innings of intrasquad after the game to get in the nine innings Mike Matheny wants every day.
Royals lineup construction, Daniel Lynch and more: Spring training mailbag (Alec Lewis)
Thanks for reading…