Clark has been chronicling what I like to call “Ned Quotes,” and I don’t mean to step on his toes, but…
“One big hit in a crucial situation,” Yost said. “It always seems to take the pressure off everything when you’re struggling.”
That’s it. The magic elixir. One Big Hit. (All caps on purpose as it sounds like the name of a pop band.)
Apparently, that One Big Hit is pretty damn elusive. Have you seen one lately? Maybe the Sal Perez home run in Tampa earlier this month. That felt pretty Big. Huge, even. And since then the Royals have won exactly one of their last eight games. Don’t you see? One Big Hit changes everything.
Here we are again. Familiar territory. That time of the year when the Royals season starts spinning faster as it circles the drain. This year has been different from past seasons as they were able to stave off the pits at least until the All-Star Break. As fans, we are all too familiar with crappy Aprils and horrible Mays torpedoing any chances. This year, the Royals actually made a cameo appearance in first in June. It was kind of the Tigers to let us have our moment in the sun.
Since then, the Royals have gone 9-17. Impressive.
Stretches like that lead columnists to question the Royals collective intestinal fortitude when it comes to playing under pressure:
Hope is not a plan. Belief is not a right. Patience went out years ago. You want to talk about the problems with the Royals? That’s a good place to start.
So is this:
They regularly shrink as the moment grows.
It’s a good hypothesis, but I don’t buy it. The Royals don’t “shrink” when they manage to raise expectations. The simple truth is they just aren’t very good. That’s what mediocre teams do. They play well for a stretch, get your attention to where you begin to think, “Hey, maybe this team is good enough to do something positive.” Then, they revert back to their true talent level. That’s how it’s been with the Royals for the last several years. This year, they played well for a stretch, got into first and then reverted to form.
Ahead of the All-Star Break, I wrote that the final 13 games of July were crucial. The Royals are 0-4 so far. And looking lifeless. It’s clear it’s time to sell. It’s also obvious it’s time to clear house.
How about this?
That’s not the first time Yost has touted his club’s BP power. That doesn’t make it any less hilarious.
That a major league manager would talk up his team’s batting practice power is equal parts insane and sad. While Yost was outsmarting himself out of a job in the midst of a pennant race in Milwaukee, it appears he’s doing the same thing here. Expectations can be a bitch. Especially if you’re not equipped to handle them. Yost has to know time is running out. Not on the season, but on his employment in Kansas City. This is how it goes.
This regime is moving closer toward irrelevance every day. I’m doubtful there will be any movement this season. (Although I desperately hope I’m wrong.) Besides, it’s too late to make a difference anyway. But there’s always next year.