Learning is an incredible thing. Here's what I have been learning from the Royals lately:
- One complete game is really fun to see as a fan.
Predictably, I was thrilled yesterday as Bannister neared the end of his smart, efficient, mostly flawless complete game. I didn't get to behold the entire triumph but Bannister's late inning pitches all looked deliberate, graceful, and most importantly, baffling to all the hitters he faced. After the start he's had this season, he darn well deserves his AL Player of the Week honor. (Well, co-honor.)
- Two is a whole lot better.
I wondered how Greinke would follow up his brilliant 8-inning performance from the other night. I hoped for a good start, but had no idea it would be that good.
During his postgame interview with Joel Goldberg (who I think I dislike, but I'm not sure yet), I IMed my brother that Greinke sounds a whole lot more comfortable with being interviewed than he used to. I know he used to have a terrible fear of being on camera because he thought people would think he was dumb. He has done so much lately that make me want to send a fruit basket of thanksgiving to his doctors; obviously his pitching mentality has improved exponentially from his 2005 season, he looks much more comfortable with the media, and he was even out among a throng of fans handing out Butler powder blues on Saturday.
To me, it's that last one that is most telling about his psychological progress. Even to people who don't suffer from social anxieties, being inside a cluster of freebie-seeking fans can induce a bit of an internal panic. It happened to me, and I'm deeply impressed that he put himself in that situation (and was apparently fine).
- Good defense is sexy.
Mark Teahen's leaping catch on the track, Grudzielanek's 10 assists, all the double plays. Pena's feed to Grud in the 2nd double play was really, really pretty. Please, sir, I want some more.
-Quote of the night:
"I'm gonna struggle off a guy one of these days." -Billy Butler, on the Royals Live postgame. I call BS; there's no way he will ever struggle.
(Did anyone else notice the careless lcoker room camera work that led to a shower being televised? WTF, Fox Sports Net??? How do you not forsee that one happening??)
- Meanwhile, down on the farm(ish)
It appears that Jorge de la Rosa is acting like his April 2007 self. In his start tonight at Memphis, DLR threw 53 of his 72 pitches for strikes on his way to 4 Ks, no walks, and 4 hits over 5 innings. If Jorge is indeed the PTBNL for Ramon Ramirez, I still like that deal a lot, because I can be fairly certain that DLR will return to his later-in-2007 form of wildness all over the walls.
Joel Peralta held the Redbirds off in two solid innings, and Neal Musser worked the 8th and 9th for his 3rd save of the year.
For those keeping score at home, Angel Berroa had three hits in that game, a 4-1 Omaha win.
The Greatest Hot Take Ever - I could have hot takes on the fact that the Royals swept the Angels starting on Good Friday and ending on Easter, is that a consequence? I mean the Royals ...
4 days ago