And so it begins.
It was one of the bright spots last year, often even cleaning up messes left by starters.
Gil Meche, the $55-million man pitched seven great innings. He struck out six, gave up seven hits, and walked zero.
Meche could've used a little more run support. Kansas City left 11 on base, with six of those being in scoring position with two outs, and their only two runs were driven in by third baseman Alex Gordon. Gordon also hit his first home run of the season.
So going into the eighth, Meche's pitch count was at 91. Manager decided to bring in set-up man Kyle Farnsworth, and with two on and two out, he gave up a three-run home run to Jim Thome.
Instead of getting through the eighth and subsequently handing the ball over to all-star caliber closer Joakim Soria, the Royals didn't even get to play the bottom of the ninth.
Meche did what he was asked. The offense could have produced more, and Farnsworth obviously could have been better.
It's the frustration on day one that Royals fans weren't hoping for. This is something they dealt with when Ambriox Burgos and Andrew Sisco would come out of the bullpen.
Then again it's day one, and there's 161 more games. But every one matters.
Offensively, it wasn't horrendous, but the Royals left the opportunity to win on base. Six different players collected hits, including catcher Miguel Olivo's two-hit performance.
Aviles went 0-3 in the nine-spot but as mentioned before, it's day one.
Hopefully, blown leads don't become a trend for the bullpen. It was rarely a trend last year, but has often been considered a tradition of the Royals' bullpen in years prior to 2008.
Zack Greinke begins his Cy Young campaign tomorrow, going up against Gavin Floyd.
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