I was shocked to see that the Kansas City Royals, with a record of 46 wins and 81 losses, rank 13th in Major League Baseball with a .270 team batting average.
"With the way they hit against the Indians," I thought, "they should be in the top-five."
Entering tonight's game (in which Kansas City has already scored 13 runs through seven innings), the Royals carried a .304 team batting average against the Tribe this year. That's almost an extra three and a half hits per 10 at bats.
Or put it this way: take out the beating that they put on Tribe pitchers, and the Royals lineup hits only .265, dropping all the way to 21st in the league.
I hate seeing the Royals on the schedule. Nothing good ever comes out of it. If you beat them, so what? You're supposed to beat them. It's just the Royals; they have as much of an emphasis on winning as Nicole Ritchie has on eating.
If you lose to them, it's like getting beat up by your little sister. So far the Indians are 8-6 against KC this season, which I guess is respectable given that our overall record stands 12 games below .500.
Then I look at it the other way and see that 13 percent of Kansas City's wins are against Cleveland.
Sportstime Ohio put up the stat during the seventh inning that tonight, the Royals 3-5 hitters were 11-for-13. 11 hits in 13 at bats? That's ridiculous for slow-pitch softball, let alone a major league pitching staff.
Catcher John Bucks is batting .237 this season. Against the Indians: .400. Doug Mientkiewicz, David DeJesus and Mark Teahen are all close to .300 for the season, yet all sport .400+ batting averages against the Tribe, including Teahen's ridiculous .478 and an 8-for-8 stretch to start this series.
(I know I used ridiculous in each of the past two paragraphs, but that's how strongly I feel about this. When guys like Shane Costa, Esteban German and John Buck help derail what should have been a special season, you get bitter.)
It doesn't even stop there. The Royals rank last in the bigs with a 5.66 ERA, which seems to see just a slight improvement when facing the Indians (5.46). Keep in mind, though, that it counts the infamous Luke Hudson game, in which he gave up 11 runs (only 10 earned though) in just one third of an inning. That works out to an ERA of - get your calculators out kids, the formula is earned runs divided by innings pitched times nine - 270.00. 270.00!!!!!!!!!
(Exclude that start and the team ERA is a more respectable 4.76).
As I prepare to post this and go to bed, the Indians have rallied from a 10-1 first inning deficit to tie the game at 13. It's the bottom of the ninth and Rafael Betancourt struck out Mark Teahen, the first time in nine at bats he's been retired this series. Betancourt even took down Mike Sweeney, who as my friend Stu says, is likely the captain of the Indians Killers squad.
Ordinarily I'd stay up to watch the end of the game. But I'm not.
After all, it's only the Royals.