The Royals travel back to 2007, with Zack Greinke putting up six solid innings of work just to end up with the loss.
Greinke went six innings only allowing one run on seven hits and one walk. This season he is now 0-2 despite having an era under three. Kansas City’s offense has failed him in both of his outings this season. This is the third time the Royals have been shut out this season.
Kansas City’s main offensive players have been anemic to start the season. The Royals best hitters in Vinnie Pasquantino, Michael Massy, MJ Melendez and Bobby Whitt Jr have a total of eight hits on the year and none of them are batting above the Mendoza line of .200.
Royals bench coach Paul Hoover stood in as acting manager for the Royals with Matt Quatraro out with an illness. He praised Grienkie’s work.
“He’s really really good with that line up and for him to get through six innings,” Hoover said.
Pasquantino said that the offense needs to provide run support for his starting pitcher, especially when he puts up such a good performance.
“It’s really frustrating he goes out there and works his tail off like that and holds them to one run,”Pasquantino said. “We just got to do better.”
The royals had four chances to score with runners in scoring position and failed every time. Both Bobby Whitt Jr. and MJ Melendez had two separate chances to drive in runs. The best chance came in the third inning.
In the third inning the Royals got their lead off runner on when Nicky Lopez got hit with a breaking ball and then Jackie Bradley Jr. walked. But, before any damage was done Whitt Jr struck out. Then the Royals sent both the runners on contact when Melendez hit a line drive directly at the right fielder. A quick throw to second base ended the inning on a double play.
In the fifth Jackie Bradley Jr. got the royals first hit of the day. His hit moving Nicky Lopez to third base. With runners at the corners and one out the Royals had two of their best bats come up. They failed again. Whitt Jr. flew out and Melendez went down on strikes. Kansas City never had a runner in scoring position after the fifth inning.
Greinke’s one run came in the sixth inning. Whitt Jr. could have prevented that run to score because while he did not cause an official error he rushed a handle of the ball to make a double play and they were only able to get one out. Pasquantino would take the blame for not being able to make the pick at first base saying he will lose some sleep over not making that play.
Regardless of how that play ended up, Kansas City would turn to its bullpen who would surrender two more runs to Toronto.
Vladimir Guerrero would hit a solo homerun off of Taylor Clarke. Clarke left a fastball down the middle of the plate and Guerrero sent it to deep right field. Matt Chapman would bring in another run off an RBI single later in the inning.
Kansas City plays Toronto in the final game of the four game series Thursday with a 1:10 start time.