Kyle Davies leaving last night’s start after just one inning with a shoulder injury was terrible news for Vin Mazzaro, who took one for the team while allowing a remarkable 14 runs in 2.1 innings of relief.
However, it ultimately may be good news for the Royals. Davies has long been one of the worst pitchers in baseball, posting a 5.60 ERA in 748 career innings, and Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star reports that the Royals are calling up prospect Danny Duffy to replace him in the rotation.
Duffy, a 2007 third-round pick who ranked 68th on Baseball America‘s annual list of top prospects this year, will make his MLB debut tomorrow against the Rangers in Kansas City.
He has a 2.59 ERA and 402 strikeouts in 344 pro innings, including a 2.96 ERA and sparkling 84/19 K/BB ratio in 76 innings between Double-A and Triple-A despite being just 22 years old. He joins Eric Hosmer in the long-awaited youth movement arriving slightly ahead of schedule in Kansas City and could be in the rotation for a long time.
Dodgers ace Clayton Kershaw entered Wednesday night’s start against the Marlins without having issued a walk in his previous three starts. In fact, his last walk came on April 3 when he issued a free pass to Paul Goldschmidt with the bases empty and two outs in the bottom of the first inning. All told, Kershaw was on a streak of 26 walk-less innings before he took the mound at home to take on the Marlins.
Kershaw started off Wednesday in character, striking out the side in the first inning. He issued a walk in a tough second inning, but escaped without allowing a run. Kershaw walked two more in the third and again danced out of danger. In the fourth, Kershaw walked Lewis Brinson to load the bases with no outs and — you guessed it — didn’t end up allowing a run. His errant control finally came back to bite him in the fifth when Kershaw issued back-to-back two-out walks, then served up a three-run home run to Miguel Rojas down the left field line. His night was done when he completed the inning. Five innings, three runs, five hits, six walks, seven strikeouts, 112 pitches.
The six walks Kershaw issued over five innings marked his first six-walk outing since April 7, 2010 when he issued six free passes to the Pirates in 4 2/3 innings. The only other time he walked as many was on August 3, 2009 against the Brewers in a four-plus inning outing. Kershaw hasn’t even walked five batters in an outing recently — the last time was September 23, 2012 against the Reds.