Found April 29, 2013 on
Fox Sports Kansas City:
KANSAS CITY, Mo. No one is proclaiming that Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer is "back."
But there certainly have been signs in the past week that Hosmer is resembling the prospect that everyone in baseball was raving about after his rookie season (.293, 19 homers, 78 RBIs) and not the flop he was last year (.232, 14 homers, 60 RBIs).
Hosmer's resurgence, if it truly is one, started with the day-night doubleheader on the road at Boston when Hosmer went four for nine. And he has continued to inch closer to his former self by going nine for his last 27 (.333).
More important than the numbers, Hosmer looks like the hitter the Royals and their fans dreamed would occupy the No. 3 hole in the order for years to come.
Hosmer appears more selective at the plate, he is using the opposite field, and he has cut back dramatically on the number of roll-over routine grounders to second that plagued his dreadful 2012 season.
"I honestly don't even want to talk about last year," Hosmer told FOX Sports Kansas City. "That's over and I've done my best to forget it. I got to the off-season and I just flushed it away and started working on my approach.
"I spent a lot of time at home in Florida with my brother looking at video and working on my swing. The main thing is I just want to really take each at bat for what it is. Just stay with that one at bat, and stay with the approach."
While Hosmer said he is done talking about 2012, he does concede how things went so terribly wrong.
"I ran into some bad luck early last year and then tried to do too much with each at bat," he said. "That got me in trouble and I'm trying to avoid that this year. If I just focus on each individual at bat, look for something in my zone, I'll be fine.
"I'm slowing everything down as best I can and I'm not trying to overswing so much. I'm trying to look for good pitches to hit and lay off the bad ones."
So far, the results are a modest improvement. He is hitting .266 overall with no homers and eight RBIs. But unlike last year, Hosmer vows to ignore the statistics and trust his approach.
"It definitely feels a lot better," he said. "If you stay focused on the present and just look at the game from each at bat and each game, you won't get too down or too depressed. You focus on the little things and those things help your team win."
Even the casual fan probably has noticed that the left-handed hitting Hosmer seems more comfortable shooting the ball the other way this year.
"That's when I'm going best, when I hit the ball hard to left-center," he said "You have to stay with breaking pitches longer and if you do, you can drive the ball to the opposite field and that's when you get hits.
"That's how I'm thinking right now, just look at each pitch and go with that pitch where ever the location is."
Interestingly, the rest of the league seems still somewhat unconvinced. He is often defended with an infield overshift where the shortstop moves almost directly behind second base, and the third baseman moves over to the shortstop position.
On Saturday night against Cleveland, Hosmer hit two rockets straight up the middle that appeared to be base hits. Instead, both were fairly routine outs.
"More teams are trying to do that now to me," Hosmer said. "But I've fortunately got a few hits this year through some holes on the left side that would have been easy balls right to the shortstop normally, or easy plays to the third baseman. Hopefully it will even out over the course of the season where every hard out up the middle is (balanced) by a hit through an open hole on the left side.
Hosmer said there is a danger of purposely trying to force balls through open holes on the left side.
"You take a look at how they're set up," Hosmer said. "I don't think it changes your approach that much. But then again, you know that if you get a ball away from you that you can drive it to the left side for maybe a hit. You don't go in thinking that but it's there is you want it."
Royals manager Ned Yost, who often dropped Hosmer to the No. 8 spot in the order last season, has moved him up to the cleanup spot, even though Hosmer has yet to go deep this season.
"Not worried about the home runs," Yost said. "Those will come. He's too good a hitter. Right now he's had consistently good at bats every night. That's all we're looking for. The power stuff will come."
Hosmer, who wasn't afraid to voice his displeasure over hitting eighth last season, is relieved to back in the middle of the order.
"I like hitting fourth," he said. "It's a lot better than hitting down in the lineup. You get guys on base when you come up and that's always a challenge but it's fun, too. I like being there.
"But no matter where I'm hitting, I just have to take it slow and focus on what's happening now and not what has happened."
BEST OF MAXIM
AROUND THE WEB
by John Viril—
Internet wags clobbered Kansas City Royals GM Dayton Moore when he decided to keep pitcher Luke Hochevar for a 1-year $4.5 contract this off-season. I must confess that I was among their number. In my own defense, I blasted the move because I was convinced that the Royals would simply put him in the same situation in which he had failed so many times before—a rotation...
KANSAS CITY, Mo. While Royals fans await the return of Danny Duffy and Felipe Paulino from elbow surgeries and rehab, and also await the maturation of right-handed flame thrower Yordano Ventura, a virtually forgotten name among Royals pitching prospects has finally begun to emerge.
Left-hander Chris Dwyer, once considered on the same quick track to stardom as left-hander John Lamb...
by John Viril—
Kansas City Royals shortstop Alcides Escobar has enjoyed a fabulous month of April. Escobar is batting .290/.337/.452 in 102 PA’s. He’s tied with Alex Gordon and Billy Butler for the team lead in home runs with 3. His fielding has also been terrific, reversing last year’s anomalous negative ranking in Ulitmate Zone Rating. Currently his UZR/150 (extrapolating...
The Kansas City Royals have optioned left handed pitcher Will Smith to Triple-A Omaha after allowing four earned runs, six total, in just over four innings of work. This isn’t devastating news and his performance didn’t decide anything as FFLockerRoom warned you before hand that his call-up was to provide depth for the Royals and nothing more. He should be back again this summer...
The Kansas City Royals have recalled left-handed pitcher Will Smith for today’s double-header. He will serve as bullpen depth and then most likely get sent down after the game. He will have a good shot at returning at some point during the year.
The post Kansas City Royals Recall Will Smith From Triple-A Omaha appeared first on FFLockerRoom | NFL - MLB News | Fantasy Sports Advice...
James Shields made a stellar first start against his former team, and Mike Moustakas hit a two-run homer to spur the Kansas City Royals to an 8-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday night.
Shields (2-2) allowed a two-run homer to Matt Joyce in the first inning, but only allowed three more hits over the next six. He struck out seven in the kind of dominant performance that...
Jeremy Guthrie kept the Indians off-balance, Alcides Escobar and Alex Gordon homered and the Kansas City Royals routed Cleveland 9-0 on Sunday to open the first day-night doubleheader in the history of Kauffman Stadium.
Guthrie (3-0) allowed six hits over 6 2-3 innings for his 16th consecutive start without a loss, tying the Royals' record set by Paul Splittorf from Aug. 13...
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) James Shields made a stellar first start against his former team, and Mike Moustakas hit a two-run homer to spur the Kansas City Royals to an 8-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday night.
Shields (2-2) allowed a two-run homer to Matt Joyce in the first inning, but only allowed three more hits over the next six. He struck out seven in the kind of dominant...
The Kansas City Royals have continued their red hot start to the season. In other news, FOX had its first increase of the season for Major League Baseball coverage, and overnights declined for the PGA [...]
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) -- James Shields made a stellar first start against his former team, and Mike Moustakas hit a two-run homer to spur the Kansas City Royals to an 8-2 victory over the Tampa Bay Rays on Tuesday night.
Shields (2-2) allowed a two-run homer to Matt Joyce in the first inning, but only allowed three more hits over the next six. He struck out seven in the kind of...
James Shields spent some good years with the Tampa Bay Rays.
The right-hander is helping the Kansas City Royals' staff get off to a good one in 2013.
Shields faces his former Rays teammates for the first time in Tuesday night's series opener at Kauffman Stadium.
Drafted by the Rays out of high school in 2000, Shields (1-2, 3.09 ERA) came up through the organization and...
Kansas City, MO — Ubaldo Jimenez pitched seven plus innings of shutout baseball and right fielder Ryan Raburn went 4-for-4 with two home runs, as the Cleveland Indians beat the Kansas City Royals 9-0.
With the win, the Tribe finished their road trip with a 5-4 record before returning to Cleveland on Tuesday.
Jimenez (1-2, 7.13) recorded his first win since August 9, 2012...
Ethan M. Chapman Bats: Left, Throws: Right Height: 6' 0", Weight: 180 lb. Born: January 5, 1990 in Upland, California, US (Age 23) High School: Upland Christian HS (Upland, CA) School: California State University San Bernardino (San Bernardino, CA) Drafted by the Kansas City Royals in the 30th round of the 2012 MLB June Amateur Draft from California State University...
Player of the Game: Ervin Santana (7 Inn. 6 hits 0 ER 0 BB / 5 SO)
They say pitching is the key to winning in baseball. But there also is another key saying that should go along with that: you can’t win if you can’t score. This was exactly the case again for the Cleveland Indians on Saturday night as they fell to the first place Kansas City Royals, 3-2.
James Shields (TB, CHW)
I still think, 10 years from now, we'll view the Shields-for-Wil-Myers swap as a Tampa heist, though the early returns from Big Game James (3.09 ERA, 1.09 WHIP in five starts) are at least holding off Jeff-Bagwell-for-Larry-Anderson comparisons. Part of the early triumph has been his ability to limit the long ball, as Shields, historically...