Opinion

Mike Moustakas continues remarkable turnaround for Royals

Kansas City Royals' Mike Moustakas (8) follows through on a single in the fourth inning during Wednesday's baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds on May 20, 2015 at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Mo.
Kansas City Royals' Mike Moustakas (8) follows through on a single in the fourth inning during Wednesday's baseball game against the Cincinnati Reds on May 20, 2015 at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Mo. JSLEEZER@KCSTAR.COM

On May 21, 2014, Royals general manager Dayton Moore sat down with third baseman Mike Moustakas. The player understood what was coming. He received a demotion to Class AAA Omaha after sputtering through the start of the season. At that point, Moustakas was hitting .152/.223/.320.

Here is the difference a year makes: Moustakas collected three more hits on Wednesday night. He is now hitting .342/.396/.503. He has completely revamped his approach and focused on hitting to the opposite field. The results have stunned observers, even his defenders inside the organization like manager Ned Yost.

“It’s absolutely amazing what he’s been able to do,” Yost said after Wednesday’s victory. “He’s been as hot as he can be, but he’s really doing a great job of staying within his plan of attack. He knows what he wants to do when he gets up to the plate. I haven’t seen him get out of that. I haven’t seen him get out of his plan. It’s working really nice for him.”

Yost added, “I quite frankly, and honestly, can’t say that I’ve seen a player in the big leagues make as big an improvement as Mike Moustakas has made from last year to this year. And it’s not even close. I mean, it’s not even close. You see good players come in — but to have to completely reinvent himself and change his game, offensively, I’ve never seen it before.”

FROM THE STAR

1. Alex Gordon made a spectacular catch, the Royals matched a franchise record for scoreless innings and completed the best 40-game start in team history.

2. Vahe Gregorian wrote a column about the team’s starting rotation.

THE ROYALS’ PLAYOFF PERCENTAGE (ACCORDING TO BASEBALL PROSPECTUS)

52.4 percent

HERE IS SOME ROCK MUSIC

“Shed” by Title Fight.

To reach Andy McCullough, call 816-234-4730 or send email to rmccullough@kcstar.com. Follow him on Twitter @McCulloughStar. Download True Blue, The Star’s free Royals app, here.

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