Two days after Salvador Perez suffered a concussion when a foul ball drilled him in the mask, the Royals’ All-Star catcher still has a lingering headache.
By TOD PALMER
The Kansas City Star
Of course, he also believes the mandatory seven-day stint on Major League Baseball’s disabled list for concussions will be plenty of time to clear up the head injury.
“I’m much better,” Perez said before the start of a 10-game homestand at Kauffman Stadium. “I just have a little bit of a headache. Other than that, I feel good. I think seven days is going to be enough. Hopefully, it will be more than enough.”
Perez took a series of foul balls off the mask or helmet during the road trip — an 8-1 swing through Minnesota, Chicago and New York — but it was a shot in the 12th inning Saturday that induced the low-grade concussion.
“We told him to come in late today, because until all of his symptoms are gone he can’t do a thing,” manager Ned Yost said Monday afternoon.
Perez was expected to take the Impact test again before the series opener against the Twins to gauge his improvement, if any, and will resume some light exercise once the headache subsides completely.
Davis’ brother dies in Florida
Tragedy struck the Royals’ family Saturday when Wade Davis’ stepbrother Dustin Huguley died in Florida.
Davis learned that Huguley collapsed during a softball game in the first inning of the Royals’ extra-inning win against the Mets and left immediately to join his family.
“They grew up together and literally were best friends as well as stepbrothers, so this has been very tough on him,” Yost said.
According to Huguley’s online obituary, there would be a visitation Tuesday night, with the funeral at 10 a.m. Wednesday, which would be Davis’ normal turn in the rotation.
Yost was noncommittal about the Royals’ plans, but it seems unlikely (and understandable) that Davis won’t pitch Wednesday.
“We’re going day-to-day with him, allowing him the time to get through this,” Yost said. “Right now, we’re just helping Wade get through this.”
If Davis isn’t available, Luis Mendoza, who made 15 starts before shifting back to a long-relief role, could be in line for a spot start.
Of course, Danny Duffy already is slated to pitch for Class AAA Omaha that day as well and could be recalled. Duffy, who is 3-0 with a 4.21 ERA in 10 games (eight starts) for the Storm Chasers, hasn’t pitched in a big-league game since undergoing elbow ligament replacement surgery.
Royals enjoying recent surge
When Billy Butler signed a four-year, $30 million deal to stay with the Royals before the 2011 season, this is what he had in mind — meaningful baseball at Kauffman Stadium in August.
Fresh off the best nine-game road trip in club history, Butler was all smiles recounting the Royals’ 8-1 swing through Minnesota, Chicago and New York.
“We’re playing good baseball and things are going our way,” Butler said. “Best road trip in franchise history, that’s a great feeling.”
He knows that fans have been skeptical, especially during a 4-19 stretch in May, as the club preached patience and insisted the pieces were in place for a contender.
Still, it sure seems like the surging Royals have turned a corner.
“When you’ve got a team that believes in the guy next to them and we’re having fun as a group, you can go a long way,” first baseman Eric Hosmer said. “This road streak opened a lot of guys’ eyes to how good we can be.”
Ratings bonanza continues
The Royals’ hot stretch continues to be a boon for Fox Sports Kansas City, which on Sunday set a ratings record.
Sunday’s game drew a 9.7 household rating in Kansas City, according to The Nielsen Co. The broadcast peaked at a 12.2 rating or roughly 114,000 homes and a 24 share, making it the most-watched program all weekend in Kansas City.
The old record (9.1) was established two days earlier when the Royals’ lost 4-2 in extra innings, snapping a nine-game win streak. The Boulevard Royals Live postgame show also set an all-time mark Sunday with a 6.3 rating.
Two Royals minor-leaguers won weekly honors, with Class AAA Omaha first baseman Ben Broussard picking up the Pacific Coast League’s offensive player of the week and Class A Lexington left-hander Daniel Stumpf earning the South Atlantic League’s pitcher of the week.
Broussard, 36, went 13 for 28 with three doubles, a home run, five RBIs and seven runs scored in seven games, posting a .464/.545/.679 slash line of batting average, on-base and slugging percentage. He is a seven-year veteran with Cleveland, Seattle and Texas, but Broussard hasn’t played in the big leagues since 2008.
Stumpf, 22, a ninth-round pick in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft, allowed only one hit with five strikeouts in six shutout innings Thursday at the Rome (Ga.) Braves. He is 9-7 with a 2.86 ERA in 20 starts for the Legends.