The Kansas City Royals get their first series win since their series against the Pirates three weeks ago, as they defeated the Boston Red Sox 7-3.
The Royals hit the ball quite well, having 12 of the 19 hardest-hit balls in the game with six of them going at least 105 MPH. It was also a good day for Mike Minor, as he had 17 pitches of 2600+ RPM and went 6.2 IP with two runs allowed to get the win.
Kansas City improves to 32-38 on the season while Boston falls to 43-29. Here's what I took away from the game.
The uncertainty with Adalberto Mondesi continues
Mondesi was once again great today, going 2-for-4 with two doubles to improve his season numbers to a .344 batting average and 1.212 OPS. He is becoming a real superstar for this team as he matures into his mid-20s. However, he may have gotten injured once again, as Hanser Alberto pinch-hit for him in the eighth inning. Hopefully, it was just precautionary, but with the history and all the games he has already missed this season, it is extremely concerning. We need Mondesi, so any updates on him will be a big deal.
Whit Merrifield is back (for now)
Merrifield's batting average has improved almost 20 points and his OPS has improved 50 points in just the last week after going 12-for-26 over the last two series against the Tigers and Red Sox. Merrifield also hit his seventh home run of the season and his first in over two weeks in this one, with a 100.8 MPH exit velocity, 28-degree launch angle, 414-foot distance and .660 expected batting average. If there's any hope of a season revival, it requires Merrifield to continue this sort of run for a while.
Salvador Perez continues to show he deserves to start in the All-Star Game
Today, Perez went 2-for-5 with an RBI single to improve his season numbers to a .292 batting average and .863 OPS. With respect to Yasmani Grandal, who is having a great season in his own right drawing the most walks in the league, having a similar home run rate to Perez and having better defensive numbers than Perez, but Perez has been a sensational hitter this season.
Perez might be one of the 10 best hitters in baseball this season, having a 130 OPS+, 18 home runs, 80 total hits and 2.4 wins above replacement entering today's game, putting him on a career-best pace thanks to last season being cut down. Perez deserves to be the AL's starting catcher in the All-Star Game and Grandal deserves to be the backup.