Tag Archive | "Dustin Pedroia"

Royals Weekly Rundown: A-ced in Oakland, Butler’s Back

Well so much for the offensive revival.  After the Royals out-slugged the Angels to take two of three, they finish the week at 2-4 after getting swept by the A’s.  Nonetheless, there’s a silver lining in all of this.  The club still sits at .500 and a few Royals hitters are mashing up the month of May.

Best of the Week:  Billy Butler

What a difference a week makes.  Big Old Country Breakfast bounced back from last week’s worst to this weeks best including a celebratory 5-for-5, 5 RBI night against the Angels.  Butler hit safely in five of six games this week and .480 overall (12-for-25) with a homer and 10 RBI.  As a result, Butler’s average has risen 45 points from .228 to .273.

He joins Alex Gordon, who deserves honorable mention this week, as the Royals two hottest hitters.  Gordon also hit .480 this week (12-for-25) and now has hit safely in 14 of 16 games in the month of May.  Gordon’s current .343 average ties him with Boston’s Dustin Pedroia for third in the American League.

Worst of the Week:  A-ced in Oakland

What hurts isn’t so much that they were swept by a struggling team, it’s how they lost.  The Royals led late in all three games, but ultimately dropped three straight one-run games.  The Royals bullpen, arguably the club’s biggest strength, blew two of those leads in the eighth including Sunday night’s thanks to a 403 foot blast by Yoenis Cespedes.

Kansas City’s bullpen still ranks third in the AL with a 3.07 ERA, so I believe this weekend’s sweep highlights the issue of their struggling offense rather than their pitching.  On paper, the Royals lineup is as deep as any in the AL including three players hitting over .300 in Gordon, Lorenzo Cain, and Salvador Perez.

However, the Royals still rank 13th out of 15 in runs scored (only the Mariners and White Sox have scored less).  A lot of the struggles derive from the lack of production from the heart of the order.

Butler appears to have turned things around, but Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas are in the midst of a serious slump.  They hit a combined 5-for-49 last week, a frightening .102.

The Road Ahead:  Eastbound and Down

Kansas City begins a three-game series with Houston on Monday night to wrap up the road trip.  Make no mistake, these are games the Royals have to take advantage of if they want to keep pace with Cleveland and Detroit.

They finished off the week with a four-game home series against the Angels.

Probable Pitchers at Houston Astros:

Monday at 7:10 CT:  Jeremy Guthrie (5-1, 2.82 ERA) vs. Dallas Keuchel (0-1, 4.82 ERA)

Tuesday at 7:10 CT:  Wade Davis (3-3, 5.98 ERA) vs. Bud Norris (4-4, 4.32 ERA)

Wednesday at 7:10 CT:  James Shields (2-4, 2.45 ERA) vs. Jordan Lyles (1-1, 6.63 ERA)

Probable Pitchers vs. Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim:

Thursday at 7:10 CT:  Ervin Santana (3-3, 2.77 ERA) vs. Joe Blanton (0-7, 6.62 ERA)

Friday at 7:10 CT:  Luis Mendoza (1-2, 5.50 ERA) vs. Jason Vargas (3-3, 3.55 ERA)

Saturday at 1:10 CT:  Jeremy Guthrie (5-1, 2.82 ERA) vs.  TBA

Sunday at 1:10 CT:  Wade Davis (3-3, 5.98 ERA) vs. C.J. Wilson (3-3, 3.72 ERA)

Follow Adam Rozwadowski on Twitter @adam_roz

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Baseball Bloggers Alliance Announces Player Of The Year Awards

KEMP UNANIMOUS PICK FOR NL Stan Musial AWARD
Bautista holds off Ellsbury in American League

There were some outstanding performances this year in Major League Baseball. However, one clearly stood out from the pack.

Los Angeles Dodger outfielder Matt Kemp was named the National League Stan Musial Award winner for 2011 in voting held by the Baseball Bloggers Alliance. Kemp received all 15 first place votes and completely dominated the rest of the voting field like he did in putting up almost a 40 HR/40 SB season for the Dodgers this year.

Coming in a distant second was Milwaukee outfielder Ryan Braun, who garnered most of the second place votes from the group. Braun’s teammate, first baseman Prince Fielder, came in third.

Interestingly enough, even though Los Angeles pitcher Clayton Kershaw outpointed Philadelphia hurler Roy Halladay in the BBA’s Walter Johnson Award voting for best pitcher, Halladay received more points for the Stan Musial Award.

Over in the American League, there were more ballots cast, perhaps due to a more intriguing race. When the dust had settled, though, Toronto’s Jose Bautista had held off Boston’s Jacoby Ellsbury by a handful of points.

Bautista received eleven of the 22 first place votes and 225 total points, while Ellsbury received five first place selections and 200 points overall. Detroit Tiger first baseman Miguel Cabrera came in third with 183 points and three first place nods. He was followed by two of his Detroit teammates, including Walter Johnson Award winner Justin Verlander.

The complete voting results are as follows (first place votes in parenthesis):

American League
Jose Bautista, Toronto (11) 225
Jacoby Ellsbury, Boston (5) 200
Miguel Cabrera, Detroit (3) 183
Curtis Granderson, Detroit (1) 135
Justin Verlander, Detroit (2) 126
Adrian Gonzalez, Boston 109
Dustin Pedroia, Boston 68
Robinson Cano, New York 55
Ian Kinsler, Texas 35
Michael Young, Texas 28
Evan Longoria, Tampa Bay 25
Alex Gordon, Kansas City 20
CC Sabathia, New York 13
Paul Konerko, Chicago 12
Adrian Beltre, Texas 10
Alex Avila, Detroit 8
Jered Weaver, Los Angeles of Anaheim 6
Ben Zobrist, Tampa Bay 6
Mike Napoli, Texas 4
James Shields, Tampa Bay 3
Victor Martinez, Cleveland 2
David Oritz, Boston 2
Melky Cabrera, Kansas City 1

National League
Matt Kemp, Los Angeles (15) 195
Ryan Braun, Milwaukee 134
Prince Fielder, Milwaukee 83
Joey Votto, Cincinnati 79
Justin Upton, Arizona 77
Roy Halladay, Philadelphia 49
Troy Tulowitski, Colorado 49
Albert Pujols, St. Louis 46
Jose Reyes, New York 42
Clayton Kershaw, Los Angeles 31
Lance Berkman, St. Louis 28
Dan Uggla, Atlanta 14
Pablo Sandoval, San Francisco 13
Cliff Lee, Philadelphia 11
Hunter Pence, Philadelphia 6
Michael Morse, Washington 5
Brandon Phillips, Cincinnati 3
Ian Kennedy, Arizona 2
Andrew McCutchen, Pittsburgh 2
Carlos Gonzalez, Colorado 1

The Baseball Bloggers Alliance was formed in the fall of 2009 to encourage cooperation and collaboration between baseball bloggers of all major league teams as well as those that follow baseball more generally. As of this writing, the organization consists of 316 blogs spanning all 30 major league squads as well as general baseball writing.

The BBA is organized under a similar structure as the Baseball Writers of America, where blogs that follow the same team are combined into “chapters” and only two votes from the chapter on an award are counted. The blog chapters that are focused on general baseball were allowed two votes as well, which they could use both on the same league or split between the two leagues.

Chapters generally followed one of two methods when casting their ballot. Either representatives of the chapter were given the ballots for voting or a “group ballot” was posted, accounting for both of their votes.

Notably, though the Alliance’s awards come out well before their official counterparts, the BBA selections have matched those of the Baseball Writers of America in all but two instances in the past two years. This, of course, does not include the Goose Gossage Award that is exclusive to the BBA.

Ballots are posted on the respective blogs and for this award, were tabulated on a 13-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1 point scale for first through tenth place. In the interest of transparency, links are given below for the ballots. Chapter affiliation is in parenthesis. Those chapters that decided on the group method are noted with an asterisk.

American League
Advanced Fantasy Baseball (Fantasy)
Baltimore Life and Sports (Baltimore)
The Bat Shatters (Minnesota)
The Blue Jay Hunter (Toronto)
Boston Red Thoughts (Boston)*
Camden Crazies (Baltimore)
Contract Year (Oakland)*
Detroit Tigers Scorecard Blog (Detroit)
The Flagrant Fan (General)
Kings of Kauffman (Kansas City)*
Lady At The Bat (New York)
Misc. Baseball (History)
The Next Level Ballplayer (Other)
Seattle Mariners Musings (Seattle)
Some Thoughts On Baseball (Toronto)
Tigers Amateur Analysis (Detroit)
The Tribe Daily (Cleveland)*
Twins On Twins (Minnesota)

National League
Advanced Fantasy Baseball (Fantasy)
Appy Astros (Houston)
Blog Red Machine (Cincinnati)
Cincinnati Reds Blog (Cincinnati)
Dugger Sports (Philadelphia)
The Flagrant Fan (General)
Fungoes (St. Louis)
Misc. Baseball (History)
The Next Level Ballplayer (Other)
North Side Notch (Pittsburgh)
Phils Baseball (Philadelphia)
Rockies Woman (Colorado)
22 Gigantes (San Francisco)
Where Have You Gone, Andy Van Slyke? (Pittsburgh)

Prior Winners: 2010: Josh Hamilton, Texas; Joey Votto, Cincinnati
2009: Joe Mauer, Minnesota; Albert Pujols, St. Louis

The official website of the BBA is located atbaseballbloggersalliance.wordpress.com. The BBA can be found on Twitter by the handle @baseballblogs and by the hashmark #bbba. For more information, contact Daniel Shoptaw at founder@baseballbloggersalliance.com.

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