Thursday, May 15, 2008

Game 40: Detroit @ Kansas City

Game Date: May 15, 2008
Royals 8, Tigers 4 / Box Score
WP: Meche (3-5), LP: Rogers (3-4) 
Royal Home Runs: Guillen (4)
Royals Record: 19-21

When you look at the Tigers on paper, they look far too good to be swept by the Royals twice in one year. But the game isn't played on paper and thankfully the Tigers haven't found a way to play as a team yet. The Royals will see them again in Kansas City July 21-23. It'll be interesting to see if the Tigers still look as lost as they do right now.

With Gordon, DeJesus, and Grudzielanek on the bench this afternoon, you had to wonder how the Royals were going to score runs. The short answer was, walks, infield hits, and timely hitting. Here are the details as chronicled by an article on the Royals website:

The small-ball offense finished the game with four walks, two steals, a sacrifice bunt, a bunt single, two infield singles, two bloop singles and a strange popup from Gload that barely made it out of the infield, but somehow turned into a double.

The Royals got on the board in the first inning after Joey Gathright drew a walk and Esteban German reached on an infield single. Billy Butler drove them both in with a double to right field. And one hitter later, Miguel Olivo doubled in Butler.

The second inning was more of the same. Ross Gload had the aforementioned weird double that ESPN's play-by-play lists as a double to shortstop. Tony Pena followed him with a single. Gathright reached on an infield single, and that scored Gload. German put down a sacrifice bunt. Billy Butler walked. And Jose Guillen walked with the bases loaded to drive in Pena.

It was that kind of game for the Royals; one that surely made Trey Hillman proud.

Gil Meche kept the Tigers in check most of the game, going seven innings and giving up three earned runs on six hits and two walks. He struck out six and gave up one home run. He finally has his ERA under 6.00 and he seems to be gaining steam, which is nice to see given how well most of the other starters are pitching.

The Royals begin an eleven game road trip that'll take them to Florida, Boston, and Toronto. Tomorrow night, Brett Tomko (1-4, 5.67) will go up against Scott Olsen. Tomko is 7-2 in his career against the Marlins with a 3.18 ERA in 73.2 IP. Olsen is 0-1 in his career against the Royals with a 6.00 ERA in 6.0 IP.

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