Wednesday, March 12, 2008

ST Game #13

Game Date: March 11, 2008
Royals 8, Diamondbacks 7 / Box Score
Royals Spring Training Record: 7-6

On the offensive side of things, we had much to cheer about in this one--like the way this recap starts out on the Royals website: "Billy Butler's day got off to a good start against Dan Haren. With one out in the first, Mike Aviles singled, Mark Teahen moved him to third with a double and Butler brought them both home with a single to center." Singles, moving runners, and setting the stage for the clean up hitter to drive in runs. That's how it is supposed to be done.

We've got some guys in camp who probably aren't going to make the Opening Day roster, but at the same time, they continue to put up impressive numbers. Mike Aviles was 2-for-5 yesterday. His average is currently .412. Damon Hollins was 1-for-3 and he's hitting .308. And Justin Huber was 1-for-1 with an RBI. He's hitting .500. All three of them probably deserve a spot based on the way they've performed this spring. But if the Royals carry 12 pitchers, 2 catchers, 6 infielders, and 5 outfielders, you have to wonder where these guys would fit.

Let's assume that the following guys are already on the roster, and I know that a couple of these guys are a stretch, but work with me:

  • SP-Gil Meche
  • SP-Brian Bannister
  • SP-Zack Greinke
  • SP-Kyle Davies/John Bale/Brett Tomko
  • SP-Luke Hochevar/Hideo Nomo/Luke Hudson
  • RP-Ryan Braun
  • RP-Jorge De La Rosa
  • RP-Jimmy Gobble
  • RP-Ron Mahay
  • RP-Joel Peralta
  • RP-Yasuhiko Yabuta
  • RP-Joakim Soria
  • C-John Buck
  • C-Miguel Olivo
  • DH-Billy Butler
  • 1B-Ryan Shealy
  • 2B-Mark Grudzielanek
  • SS-Tony Pena
  • 3B-Alex Gordon
  • LF-Mark Teahen
  • CF-David DeJesus
  • RF-Jose Guillen
  • UTIL-Ross Gload
  • UTIL-Alberto Callaspo
  • UTIL-Esteban German

If the Hillman decides to go with 11 pitchers instead of 12, which I can see happening, that would open up one spot, maybe for a reserve outfielder, but not necessarily. With the flexibility of both Gload and German to play the infield or outfield, our 25th guy could be nearly anybody. Would it be Justin Huber? Shane Costa? Mitch Maier? Damon Hollins? Mike Aviles? Joey Gathright? Would the Royals pick Gathright because they like his speed on the bases and because they need someone to backup DeJesus? Or will the give the roster spot to someone else, thinking that Teahen could backup DeJesus if necessary and finally give someone like Justin Huber a shot? We'll soon find out.

On the mound yesterday, Zack Greinke gave up three bombs--all solo shots. Oddly, if you took those home runs away, which of course you can't, Greinke pitched well. He struck out five in four innings. The only hits he gave up were the long balls. Brandon Duckworth was hit hard, giving up four earned runs in two innings. Neal Musser picked up with save with a scoreless inning of work.

Luke Hochevar is scheduled to start this afternoon in Tempe against Jon Garland of the Angels. Brian Bannister, Yasuhiko Yabuta, and Mike Maroth are scheduled to work against minor leaguers.

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