Royals Live

Royals 2014

Judging the Royals

Alex Gordon puts on a show

With two outs in the top of the fourth inning Minnesota designated hitter Josmil Pinto hit an 86-MPH fastball off the wall in left-center field. That part of the wall is 387 feet from home plate, so Pinto made the turn at first and headed for second base. After the game Ned Yost was asked if he was surprised Pinto tried to go to second and Ned said no—it was a legitimate double. You hit a ball off the wall in the gap, that’s a sure double.

The Royals are back to .500

The Royals completed a sweep of the Houston Astros and are now back to .500 with a record of seven wins and seven losses. James Shields got his first win of the season by pitching eight innings and giving up just one run. Shields also struck out 12, while giving up two walks and four singles—and two of them were infield singles. That’s some pretty good pitching.

Ball Star

Friday’s Royals lineup vs. the Twins

The Royals return home Friday night for a brief three-game home stand against the Minnesota Twins. Here are the lineups as Royals lefty Jason Vargas, 1-0, takes on the Twins’ Ricky Nolasco. First pitch is at 7:10 p.m. and the game can be see on Fox Sports KC.

George Brett

Why did George Brett remain a Royal forever? ‘Why not?’

The idea seems preposterous these days. A player builds a Hall of Fame career — and never leaves his original, small-market team. In other words, a George Brett career. When Brett stepped down as the Royals’ interim hitting coach last week, he addressed the notion of longevity and loyalty to a franchise with a question. “Where was I going to go?”

Meet Paul Schaal, the third baseman George Brett replaced

When George Brett incurred some nuisance back problems in the late stages of his career with the Royals, he sought relief from a chiropractor in Overland Park. It turned out to be the man whose job Brett took in 1973. Paul Schaal laughs as he remembers what he said back then: “You took my job from me at third base, remember that? Here’s what I’m going to do to get even.”

Royals rally, beat Astros 6-4 in 11 innings

Mike Moustakas’ home run in the 11th inning broke a 4-4 tie and the Royals won a wild game at Houston on Wednesday night. The Royals won for the second night in a row. With a victory on Thursday night, they can exit a road that begin in such hellish fashion with a .500 record.

Yordano Ventura gets first big-league win as Royals beat Astros 4-2

Yordano Ventura picked up his first big-league victory as the Royals beat the Astros 4-2 on Tuesday night in Houston. Ventura limited Houston to a pair of runs in seven innings. He struck out seven. He threw 101 pitches. It was the fifth start of his career, and yet another example of the dynamic potential that so tantalizes this organization.

Royals relievers struggling to hold runners during 4-7 start

Only 11 games have concluded thus far, a mere sliver of the 162-game marathon, with a three-game series starting Tuesday night in Houston. But the Royals bullpen’s performance has been troubling thus far. The relievers are committing a pair of cardinal sins: They are not throwing strikes, and they are not holding runners.

Yes, 11 games is too soon to panic, but Royals fans have no basis for hope

The Royals stand 4-7, the worst record in the American League, and a fan base trained to expect the worst is doing what it’s been taught. Most baseball people like to wait 40 games, but most baseball people haven’t suffered through an agonizing run of letdowns. Still, outside of injuries or showing up at the wrong stadium, the Royals could not have done much more in a three-day span to crumble fans’ confidence.

Cincinnati Reds (7-9) at Chicago Cubs (4-10), 2:20 p.m. (ET)

Tony Cingrani received plenty of run support in logging his first win of the season in his most recent start. The 24-year-old left- hander hopes the Reds can continue their success at Wrigley Field when they play the middle installment of a three-game set this afternoon.

AL Capsules

Albert Pujols hit his 497th home run and Howie Kendrick added two of his own to lead the Los Angeles Angels to an 11-6 win over the Detroit Tigers on Friday night.

Athletics win big with shades of Gray

The Athletics locked up reliever Sean Doolittle with a contract extension Friday afternoon, just hours before prized prospect Sonny Gray showed once again that he also has the makings of a franchise cornerstone.

AL Capsules

Albert Pujols hit his 497th home run and Howie Kendrick added two of his own to lead the Los Angeles Angels to an 11-6 win over the Detroit Tigers on Friday night.