It was a short week for the Kansas City Royals, as they were coming off the 2022 MLB All-Star break. For that reason, there may not be as much meat with the potatoes in this rendition of Mondays with Mark. Andrew Benintendi played in the All-Star Game but did nothing of note. However, the Royals did win their first series back against the Tampa Bay Rays. Let’s dive into it.
At the beginning of every week, 'Mondays with Mark' will dive into the latest developments with the Royals. Have something you want to be discussed? Let Mark know on Twitter @MarkTheOverseer or find Inside the Royals @InsideRoyals.
Nick Pratto stays up with Royals
The Royals planned to send Nick Pratto back to Omaha to join the Storm Chasers, but an injury to Edward Olivares gave him another opening. He was able to join the team in Kansas City for the opener against the Rays and went 2-for-4 while batting seventh in the lineup. Hopefully this signals more good things are on the way for Pratto and the ever-increasing youth movement within the Royals' everyday lineup.
Brad Keller is inefficient in series opener
Brad Keller missed the trip to Toronto before the All-Star Break and was hoping to start the second half of the season with a bang. Unfortunately, the control simply wasn’t there in his first start back. Keller walked five batters while striking out just one in the process. He gave up four earned runs over the course of his four innings pitched. To say the least, it wasn't a good way for Keller to get things started.
Brady Singer strikes out career-high in game two win
Brady Singer struck out a career-high 12 batters in a 6-3 Royals victory on Saturday. He only walked two while allowing one earned run over six innings of work as well. Against Tampa Bay, Singer showed everyone why he still has one of the highest ceilings of any young Royals starting pitcher and is a key piece for the organization going forward.
Bobby Witt Jr. hits team-leading 14th home run
Bobby Witt Jr. hit a Royals-leading 14th home run in the eighth inning to put the game away in Kansas City's win over the Rays on Saturday. He also got the scoring started in the third inning with an RBI double. Witt continues to be a bright spot for this team in a year that has featured plenty of bleak moments.
Witt leaves Sunday's game with injury
Speaking of bleak moments, Witt left Sunday’s game against the Rays with an apparent hamstring injury. It isn’t thought to be a severe injury, but leaving the game was deemed more of a precautionary measure. Let’s hope that is indeed the case, but it will be something to monitor moving forward. Hamstrings are tricky.
Kris Bubic is solid in series finale
On Sunday, Kris Bubic went seven strong innings in a 4-2 series-clinching victory for the Royals. He allowed two earned runs while striking out four, allowing four hits, and walking three batters. The control could have been a little bit better but overall — especially considering how his season started — it was a very solid start for Bubic and something the team hopes he can use as a launching point for the second half.
Up next, the Royals are gearing up to finish their six-game homestand with three outings against the Los Angeles Angels before heading to New York for a four-game set with the Yankees. The Angels’ Noah Syndergaard is scheduled to face Zack Greinke in the opener on Monday with a first pitch set at 7:10 p.m. CT.