The Royals were shut out for the fourth consecutive game, suffering a 12-0 loss to the Rays on Monday night. They were defeated 12-0, 4-0, and 4-0 by the Indians over the weekend and were held scoreless in the final seven innings of Thursday’s 3-2 loss to the Rockies as well.
In total, that’s 43 consecutive scoreless innings, which matches an American League record held by the 1913 St. Louis Browns. The major league record is 48 innings, set by the 1968 Cubs. The 1992 Cubs were the last team to get shut out in four consecutive games.
As mentioned yesterday, the Royals managed just 18 hits (only four went for extra bases, all doubles) and four walks in 27 innings against the Indians over the weekend. The Rays held them to two hits — both doubles by Lorenzo Cain — on Monday night.
The Royals have dropped five games in a row unsurprisingly. They’re 10 games behind the Indians in the AL Central and have fallen three games behind the Twins for the second Wild Card slot in the American League.
The Blue Jays have shut down left fielder Steve Pearce for the remainder of the season following a lingering case of lower back stiffness. Pearce has not appeared in a game since September 8, when he was forced to exit in the first inning after experiencing back pain during his at-bat. Per Ben Nicholson-Smith of Sportsnet.ca, he’s scheduled to return to Florida next week, where he’ll receive epidural injections to address the pain.
Pearce, 34, impressed in his first season with Toronto. He battled through a calf injury during the first half of the season and finished the year with a modest .252/.319/.438 batting line, 13 home runs and a .757 OPS through 348 PA. By September, the Blue Jays started testing the waters with outfield prospect Teoscar Hernandez, who shouldered the bulk of the starts in left field after Pearce was sidelined with back issues.
With the Blue Jays all but eliminated from playoff contention, however, there’s no rush to get Pearce back to the outfield. He should be in fine shape to compete for another starting role in spring, and could face stiff competition from Hernandez if the rookie continues building on his .278 average and three home runs this month. The veteran outfielder is slated to receive the remaining $6.25 million on his contract in 2018 and will be eligible for free agency in 2019.
Brewers’ minor league infielder Julio Mendez remains in “critical but stable condition,” club GM David Stearns announced Friday. Back in August, Mendez suffered a cardiac event after he was inadvertently struck by a ball from the Angels’ Austin Krzeminksi during a game between the rookie-level affiliates. The 20-year-old was removed to a Phoenix-area hospital for treatment following the incident and has recently been transferred to a hospital in his native Venezuela.
Mendez was in his fourth season with the Brewers’ organization. He spent the majority of his 2017 run with the rookie-level AZL Brewers, slashing .255/.294/.355 with 10 extra-base hits, 16 RBI and four stolen bases over 119 plate appearances. He currently holds a career .241/.324/.309 batting line, 33 extra bases and a .633 OPS through 668 PA.
Baseball is still on the back burner, however, as Mendez appears to have made little progress nearly a month following the hit by pitch. Thoughts go out to his family during this difficult time.