The Kansas City Royals won their first game of the 2020 season and did so with the help of a brilliant start from Brady Singer.
After a disappointing loss to start the year, the Kansas City Royals took the field for their second game of 2020 and secured their first win of the year.
The excitement heading into this game surrounded Brady Singer, who was making his Major League debut. That’s one of the biggest things we learned in this game, that Singer was a boss in his debut.
The 2018 first round pick threw five innings while allowing two runs and striking out seven. He had four scoreless innings and really only struggled in the third inning, which took him a bit to get out of. He never panicked though and got out of the inning without allowing the Indians to take the lead.
The way Singer threw on Saturday should give Royals fans a lot of hope for the future. He looked great. This hopefully will be the start of a wonderful career for him in Kansas City.
Singer made it to the majors quickly after being the team’s first round pick just two years ago and set the bar really high for his 2018 draft counterparts. Those guys saw what he did on Saturday and now are going to be thinking “Hey, I can do that too!” and it’ll be become a friendly competition between that group.
Royals fans couldn’t have asked for much more from Singer. Yes, he gave up two runs, but the other four innings he pitched were dominant. This kid could be something special for sure. Singer showed he can be an option in the rotation this year and that’s huge.
Singer did his part for the Kansas City Royals, but what else did we learn about the team in their second game?
We also learned that the Royals can still hit for power, which was a new trend for all of us last year. Jorge Soler scored the first Royals run of the year, slamming a home run off Mike Clevinger in the first inning to give KC a 1-0 lead.
Not to be outdone, Salvador Perez stepped up to the plate and hit a home run himself right after (his first homer since September 2018), putting the Royals up 2-0 early in the game.
Unfortunately, the Indians would tie things up in the third inning in the one inning Singer struggled in.
Speaking of struggling, Bubba Starling had his first hit of the season, which was a welcomed sight after he was pinch-hit for on Friday night and was looking helpless with the bat earlier in this game. Starling needs to show the Royals something or else he’ll be an afterthought once Hunter Dozier is eligible to return to action.
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Other bench outfielder Brett Phillips pinch-ran for Alex Gordon in the tenth inning and then played left field in the bottom of the inning. He’ll also have to prove himself this season if he wants to be a mainstay on this roster.
We learned that the relievers have looked good so far this season, which is something none of us thought would be said after how bad the bullpen was last year.
Ian Kennedy made his 2020 debut and surprisingly came out to pitch in the sixth inning. He was used predominantly as a closer last year and that’s what Royals fans felt would be the case this year as well. Kennedy pitched a scoreless sixth and seventh inning.
Trevor Rosenthal made his Royals debut in the eighth and looked awesome, notching two strikeouts and only needing 11 pitches to get through the inning. If Rosenthal can be that reliever who shined bright for St. Louis, he’d be a great piece for the backend of the Royals bullpen.
Scott Barlow was given another chance to prove himself after his struggles on Friday. He pitched in the ninth inning and it almost turned into a disaster, but he got himself out of a bases loaded situation. That was exactly what Barlow needed after a rough 2020 debut.
Greg Holland made his second appearance of the season and it was like old times for Royals fans, as he closed things out in the tenth inning and did so with three strikeouts. It was his first save for the Royals in half a decade.
All in all, it’s hard to be upset about much with this game considering the Royals recorded their first win of the year. The hitting still wasn’t great and without the “man on second” rule in extra innings, it’s possible that the game goes on for much longer, but hey – The Royals didn’t invent the new rules.
Pitching, which is what many thought WOULD be the issue in 2020, has looked great so far! Singer was phenomenal in his Major League debut and the bullpen pitched five scoreless innings. Royals pitching has only surrendered four runs in two games.
We’re two games into the 2020 season and the Kansas City Royals are 1-1 and have a chance to win their first series of the season on Sunday.
Two games down, 58 to go!