After struggling throughout most of Spring Training with the long ball, Luke Weaver had one last opportunity to show he belongs in the rotation for 2021. It was more of the same and his MLB status going into the regular season is now in serious doubt.
Prior to today’s game, Weaver had allowed 5 homers in his 9.1 innings. And while he had done an excellent job of limiting walks (1BB) and striking guys out (9), if Luke is going to turn the corner he’s going to need to start limiting homers or he’ll find himself in a bullpen sooner rather than later.
Things started rough, with Weaver allowing two homers in the bottom of the 1st to Adalberto Mondesi and Jorge Soler. The Royals played small ball in the 2nd, with a walk and single putting runners on the corners, and a Whit Merrifield sac fly scored Michael A. Taylor from 3rd. Andrew Benintendi singled immediately after that, pushing another run across and giving the Royals 6 runs in the first two innings.
Weaver did well after that, pitching clean 3rd and 4th innings, and was well on his way in the 5th, but Carlos Santana smashed another homer to right, giving the Royals a 7-1 lead. After a strikeout to lead off the 6th, Weaver’s day was done. His final line? 5.1IP, 7ER, 3HRs, 8Ks, and 2BBs, and his Spring ERA is now 8.59 and he allowed 8 homers. I’m very interested to see if they’ll give Weaver a rotation spot after this performance. He might just get it by default as no other pitcher really shined out there.
The bullpen was okay, with J.B Bukauskas and Kevin Ginkel scoreless appearances but Stefan Crichton allowed a 3-run homer in the 7th to give the Royals a cool 10 runs.
On offense, there was... not much. Pavin Smith homered! 3 other guys had singles! Nobody walked! Yeah, let’s keep moving.
The D-backs fell to 8-12 on the Spring with their next game against the Reds tomorrow. 4 more games until the regular season. Are you ready yet?