Ball Star

Andy McCullough blogs about the Royals and baseball

Eric Hosmer stays hot for Royals to start second half

07/19/2014 8:55 AM

07/19/2014 9:20 AM

Eric Hosmer stood inside the batter’s box in the fifth inning on Friday night, and a graphic on a Fenway Park scoreboard revealed the scope of his recent resurrection.

On the bottom of the scoreboard read his batting average in June, a measly .195, low enough to merit questions about his standing on the major-league roster. On top appeared his batting average in July. The number was .449 – and about to rise.

Hosmer worked the count full and slipped a single through the infield shift, recorded his third base knock of the night and plated his second run. He extended his hitting streak to 14 games, only to watch the Royals falter in the late going.

In an interview with The Star earlier this week, owner David Glass projected Hosmer as a future All Star. For the Royals to reach October, they require Hosmer to at least resemble one in the second half. He accomplished that feat in 2013, hitting .323 with an .852 on-base plus slugging percentage.

On Friday, his OPS rose above .700 for the first time this season since May 28. No longer does he look lost at the plate. In 13 games this month, Hosmer has a 1.182 OPS, with two homers and six doubles.

"That’s what this team needs," Hosmer said. "They need me going. I’ve got to be driving in runs. That’s just what I have to do. I just have to continue to put in good at-bats, stay selective, don’t go out of my zone, and just continue to get good pitches to hit, and don’t miss them."

IT COULD BE WORSE

The Astros did not have a good Friday on Friday.

FROM THE STAR

Responsibility for an ugly, 5-4 loss falls at the feet of the manager. "I outsmarted myself," Ned Yost said.

Billy Butler on KC’s $12.5 million option for 2015: "My numbers throughout my contract suggest they should [pick it up]." But he is willing to renegotiate to remain with the Royals.

An update on Jason Vargas.

THE ROYALS’ PLAYOFF PERCENTAGE (ACCORDING TO BASEBALL PROSPECTUS)

16.5 percent.

HERE IS SOME ROCK MUSIC

"Undo" by The 1975.

To reach Andy McCullough, call 816-234-4370 or send email to rmccullough@kcstar.com. Follow him on Twitter: @McCulloughStar.

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