Daniel Lynch’s second career start turned into a debacle. The Kansas City Royals right-hander couldn’t get out of the first inning against the Chicago White Sox on Saturday, surrendering eight runs before he was pulled.
The Royals are hopeful Lynch (0-1, 18.56 ERA) will bounce back in the finale of a three-game series against the Tigers in Detroit on Thursday afternoon.
The 24-year-old is considered the organization’s top pitching prospect, and the Royals are eager to see how he handles adversity.
“He’s got great stuff,” Kansas City manager Mike Matheny said. “This guy’s going to pitch a long time. There are just lessons that young players learn on the fly, and this was a great learning experience for him and one that I know he doesn’t want repeated.”
The White Sox torched Lynch for seven hits and a walk in two-thirds of an inning. In his career debut against Cleveland on May 3, Lynch gave up three runs on four hits in 4 2/3 innings.
“A guy with that kind of stuff, it was just one of those perfect-storm things that turned and went in a tough direction to get recouped,” Matheny said. “He’s a learner. That’s just kind of his makeup. I think guys that are wired that way, it can sometimes go in a negative direction when you’re overanalyzing things.”
The Royals are desperate for a victory. They have dropped 10 straight, including a 4-2 loss to the Tigers on Wednesday. Their offense shut down after a two-run first inning.
“Once again, you look at a number of hard-hit balls and we had a number of times where guys put their barrel on it and not a lot to show for it,” Matheny said. “We’ve got to continue to try to put some of those together to make those big innings happen. But, yeah, there’s urgency.”
Spencer Turnbull (1-2, 4.74 ERA) will make his fifth start of the season for Detroit. Manager AJ Hinch removed him after three innings in his most recent outing, when he gave up four runs (two earned) on seven hits to the Boston Red Sox while throwing 80 pitches on May 6.
“He was fighting everything,” Hinch said. “He wasn’t at his best and not executing consistently.”
Turnbull faced the Royals on April 26 and was tagged with a loss, although he lasted six innings while allowing three runs on five hits.
He has yet to record a victory in seven career outings against Kansas City, going 0-3 with a 3.46 ERA.
Miguel Cabrera had two run-scoring singles on Wednesday, giving him 2,878 career hits. He became the all-time hits leader among Venezuelan-born players, passing Omar Vizquel (2,877).
“Miggy really needs to enjoy this one,” Hinch said. “That’s a really big deal.”
Detroit has won three straight games for just the second time this season. The Tigers’ offense has produced 44 runs in the past seven games.
“I think our at-bats have been pretty good for a couple of series in a row,” Hinch said. “That creates energy in the dugout. I don’t sense as much frustration. …
“We didn’t have perfect at-bats tonight, but we stayed with it and guys started coming up with really big hits and just quality at-bats and tough outs and longer at-bats. There’s a lot that goes into putting a team offense together.”
–Field Level Media