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Thursday April 3, 2008 9:19 pm

Royals Red Hot As They Sweep Tigers

Posted by Milo Taibi Categories: Athletes, MLB, Scoreboard,

Mark Grudzielanek hits a double
Prior to the start of the 2008 season, Kansas City Royals manager Trey Hillman said to the media, “I do know this, you cannot win a championship without the expectation of winning it.” When at the time Hillman’s comment may have drawn more laughter than respect, his expectation doesn’t look quite so unrealistic now. His Royals swept the Detroit Tigers with a 4-1 victory on Thursday, thanks in part to home runs from Mark Teahen and Alex Gordon. The Royals’ starting pitcher, Zack Greinke, had a Brian Bannister-esque performance, going 7 innings giving up just 6 hits and 1 run, striking out 3. Recent Royals acquisition Ramon Ramirez held down the fort in the 8th inning en route to Joakim Soria’s 2nd save of the year in the 9th inning.

“Obviously, we’re very pleased by this—especially with our pitching,” Hillman said. “It’s nice to come in here and play this well against a team like that.”

The story of the Detroit Tigers in their first 3 regular season games is a very different one. Starting pitcher Jeremy Bonderman was only decent today, going 6.1 innings into the game, giving up 4 earned runs. Their offense wasn’t any better either, stranding 16 baserunners. In the 2nd game of the series the Tigers were only able to get 3 base hits (all of which from Edgar Renteria) on the day. On their season opener the Tigers stranded 18 baserunners.

“We stunk,” Tigers manager Jim Leyland said. “We look like we’re just going up there and giving at-bats away without any purpose. The manager’s responsible for the preparation and the performance of the club, and right now, we don’t look very prepared. We just look like dead.”

Alex Gordon sung a different tune following the game.

“We know that Detroit’s going to be very good, so we’re going to celebrate this sweep,” Gordon said. “Hopefully, we can go to Minnesota and do the same thing.”



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