Baseball is back and Kansas City showed some positives in game one of spring training.
Lots of players have some good to build off of. Daniel Lynch, Vinnie Pasquantino, Bobby Whitt Jr among others looked good.
The Royals could not have started the game off any better with their first-inning production. Daniel Lynch got the start and had the team’s first one, two, and three innings. Last season Lynch struggled to get out of the first inning. Lynch had an era of almost eight in the first inning last season. Today Lynch attacked the strike zone and did not throw an uncompetitive pitch.
In his second inning of work, Lynch would give up a two-run home run off the foul pole but with the high altitude in Arizona, all pitchers get knocked around a little. From the third inning on the Royals would have a new pitcher every inning until the end of the game. Josh Staumont and Jose Cuas both look good. Cuas in particular had a great slider. He was able to get a strike out using his slider.
The pitch clock did not seem to impact any of the pitchers in particular. A common teaching among relief pitchers is to “slow the game down.” that is no longer possible because of the clock. None of the pitchers had a problem with the faster pace of play.
On the offensive side of the ball, Pasquantino came out to the ballpark ready to hit. He hit a no-doubter home run and a solid missile line drive for a single. His single may not have occurred last season as he hit it right to the spot in the outfield where the extreme shift used to play.. He also reached base with a walk before he was pulled from the game.
Whitt also reached base on a walk. Witt’s walk came in the first inning and on four straight balls. All of the pitches were competitive; he may have swung at them last season. Tucker Bradley hit the walk-off home run in the bottom of the ninth inning. Salvador Perez looked like himself. He would reach base on a solid single and strike out on the slider low and away.
The new rules did have an impact on the game. The pace of play was significantly impacted. There was very little downtime outside of changing innings. The game was a quick two hours and 33 minutes long. Multiple throws to the first baseman that the bigger base was taken advantage of.
Overall the Royals played an excellent spring training game. The Royals will play the Rangers tomorrow at 2:05 start time.