The Royals had one of the more disappointing weekends in recent memory, as the club was shut out in all three games of its weekend series against the Indians in Cleveland. On Friday, Ryan Merrit tossed 6 2/3 shutout frames for the Tribe while Joe Smith, Tyler Olson, and Cody Allen held the Royals at bay from there in a 4-0 win. On Saturday, Mike Clevenger hurled six shutout innings and was backed up by Bryan Shaw, Dan Otero, and Allen to finish the job in another 4-0 victory.
On Sunday, the Indians brought the lumber. Francisco Lindor, Carlos Santana, and Yan Gomes homered — Gomes’ was a grand slam — in a 12-0 cakewalk. Carlos Carrasco limited the Royals to six hits over seven shutout innings. Craig Breslow and Zach McAllister finished the final two innings to complete the shutout sweep.
The Royals had a total of 18 hits and four walks over the three-game set, which saw 113 Royal plate appearances. Only four of those hits went for extra bases and all were doubles.
The 64-65 Royals are now nine games behind the first-place Indians in the AL Central. They’re 2.5 games out of the second AL Wild Card slot, but are contending with a handful of other teams.
Arizona Diamondbacks right fielder Steven Souza dove for a ball in a spring training game last night, missed, and ended up injuring his right shoulder.
It looked bad, too. Center fielder Jarrod Dyson stood over him, frantically waving to the dugout for a trainer as Souza kicked his legs in apparent pain. Souza held his arms awkwardly as he walked off the field. At the moment the Dbacks are calling it a right shoulder strain, but he’ll get an MRI on it today after which a more specific diagnosis will come.
If Souza is out for a while it’s a pretty big blow to Arizona’s 2018 plan. Souza was acquired to help cushion the blow of losing J.D. Martinez in free agency. While not the hitter Martinez is, Souza hit 30 homers in Tampa Bay last year, stood likely to at least match that in the more hitter-friendly confines of Chase Field and, of course, plays superior defense.
Potential replacements for Souza include moving David Peralta from left to right and inserting Yasmany Tomas in left or having fourth outfielder Dyson, or perhaps a platoon of Dyson and utilityman Chris Owings, handle right. Socrates Brito is another internal option.
Obviously the Snakes will wait to hear the results of the MRI before going too deeply into replacement plans, all the while hoping that Souza’s injury is far less serious than it appeared to be last night.