KCKingdom
Fansided

Kansas City Royals: Jakob Junis deserves every bit of early season praise

DETROIT, MI - APRIL 03: Jakob Junis #65 of the Kansas City Royals pitches against the Detroit Tigers during the third inning at Comerica Park on April 3, 2018 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images)
DETROIT, MI - APRIL 03: Jakob Junis #65 of the Kansas City Royals pitches against the Detroit Tigers during the third inning at Comerica Park on April 3, 2018 in Detroit, Michigan. (Photo by Duane Burleson/Getty Images) /
facebooktwitterreddit

After a rough start to the 2018 season, Kansas City Royals fans can finally exhale and know their team isn’t going 0-162. Jakob Junis deserves a lot of the credit for why the Royals are now in the win column.

Well it took until their fourth game of the season, but the Kansas City Royals recorded a win. A large part of the victory was due to the performance of Jakob Junis, who pitched seven scoreless innings while only allowing three hits, one walk, and striking out six batters. It was a performance fans will likely remember all season long.

Many fans questioned if Junis would be able to continue pitching as well as he did down the stretch last season and he showed after one start that he was still dialed in. Now yes, this is just one start and it was against the lowly Tigers, but who cares? Junis looked incredible and he deserves to be praised for his season debut.

After a rough Opening Day for Danny Duffy and us remembering that Jason Hammel couldn’t make it through the lineup three times, it’s been nice seeing Junis and Ian Kennedy do their jobs. What sucked for those two is that other aspects of the team let them down.

More from Kansas City Royals

For Kennedy, it was the bullpen, (okay, just Brandon Maurer) who allowed three runs and cost Kennedy the win. For Junis, it was the fact that his offense only gave him ONE RUN of support. After how shaky the bullpen has looked so far, it’s a miracle that Junis even got the win still.

Jakob Junis isn’t going to have a 0.00 ERA all season long, but this season is all about developing players. If Junis can continue to pitch well, then it’d be great for the next few years for this team. He’s only 25 years old and this is just his second year in the majors, so he has plenty of time to become even better.

What impressed me about Junis was that he didn’t seem phased by anything on Tuesday. The weather was disgusting yet he didn’t seem bothered at all. He had retired 11 straight batters before allowing a single in the eighth before being pulled and it was definitely a performance worth praising.

Some might say “It’s only one game!” and they have a point. This was just one game and against a bad team like the Tigers nonetheless. The weather was disgusting and it didn’t look like anyone wanted any part in playing in that crap, which could have worked in Junis’ favor too.

On the other hand, the first four games haven’t been kind to the Kansas City Royals, so fans should enjoy what Junis did and hope that he can continue to be the bright spot for this team. If he can emerge as one of the best pitchers in the rotation come seasons end, then 2018 could be a bigger success than we all initially thought.