Not when the young right-hander walked into the clubhouse in spring training Drew Lock Jersey , freshly acquired from Arizona in the Rule 5 draft. Not when he was thrown into the bullpen after spending most of his career as a starter. And not when Yost moved him back to the rotation in the big leagues.
So when Keller stared down the Los Angeles Angels‘ potent lineup, and held Mike Trout and Co. to two hits over seven innings, the skipper may have one of the few people in the ballpark unsurprised.
”He was never wide-eyed. Never overwhelmed in any situation we put him in,” Yost marveled after the 22-year-old Keller pitched the Royals to a 2-0 win Monday in the makeup of a game frozen out in April.
Keller (2-2) struck out six and walked two in his fifth career major league start. Nobody reached second on him, one of his two baserunners was wiped out by a double play, and he gamely retired the side in order in the seventh, when his pitch count eclipsed 100 for the first time this season.
”I definitely feel more comfortable with every start,” Keller said. ”Just try not to let the moment get too big, especially up here. Things tend to snowball up here.”
His bullpen made the outstanding start stand up, too.
Kevin McCarthy struck out Chris Young and retired Ian Kinsler to strand a runner on third base in the eighth, and Wily Peralta finished the three-hitter by working around Albert Pujols’ single in the ninth.
It was the first save for the longtime starter in 136 career big league games.
”In a game like this, you’re not going to hang your hat on one situation. We just didn’t do enough offensively,” Angels manager Mike Scioscia said. ”On the offensive side it was a tough day for us.”
The Royals scored the only run they needed off Tyler Skaggs (6-5) in the fourth. Duda, who is known primarily for his power, managed to dribble a single through the infield, driving in Hunter Dozier after he reached on a leadoff double on a mild, sun-splashed afternoon.
Herrera added an RBI single, his career-high third hit of the game, in the eighth inning.
Skaggs Anthony Nelson Jersey , who was scratched from his start last week with right hamstring tightness, allowed seven hits and walked two in seven innings. He struck out eight for the third straight start.
”It’s difficult. A quick turnaround,” Skaggs said. ”A day game yesterday, fly here, kind of another day game – an afternoon game – and another game tomorrow. A lot of travelling and a tough schedule, but nobody’s feeling sorry for us.”
Indeed, both teams had to fly into Kansas City for the makeup game. The Angels kicked off a road trip that sends them to Boston and Baltimore, and the Royals stopped between series in Houston and Milwaukee.
Not that Yost’s bunch minds now. The Royals had lost nine in a row at Kauffman Stadium, and had been outscored 54-17 over the stretch, with their last win coming June 2 against Oakland.
Of their four wins overall in June, three have been shutouts.
JACKIE ROBINSON DAY
The Angels and Royals were supposed to wear No. 42 to celebrate Jackie Robinson when their game was frozen out on April 15. So, everybody donned the iconic No. 42 jerseys Monday instead.
”When we were going to do it, it was like, what, 18 degrees here?” Scioscia said. ”The guys were really looking forward to it. We’re glad we get the chance.”
ESKY ALL OVER
The Royals’ Alcides Escobar started at third to give Mike Moustakas a day off. The club wants to give youngster Adalberto Mondesi a long look at shortstop, so Escobar has been moved around a bit. He started in center in Houston last Friday and has a majors-leading streak of 411 consecutive starts.
TRAINER’S ROOM
Angels: RHP Garrett Richards (left hamstring strain) threw off a mound, but Scioscia warned ”we’ll have to progress from there.” … INF Zack Cozart (left shoulder subluxation) began baseball activities but is still in the evaluation phase. … INF Jefry Marte (left wrist sprain) is also swinging now. ”We’ve got a whole team back in Southern California,” Scioscia deadpanned.
Royals: INF Cheslor Cuthbert remains sidelined with a lower back strain. ”He’s starting to feel a little better,” Yost said Jeffery Simmons Jersey , but there is no timetable for his return.
UP NEXT
The Angels begin their scheduled road trip Tuesday night in Boston, where left-hander John Lamb (0-0, 5.40 ERA) starts in the opener of a three-game set. Kansas City returns to the road with right-hander Jakob Junis (5-8, 4.43 ERA) starting the first of two games in Milwaukee on Tuesday night.
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The slumping Chicago White Sox are playing a team that didn’t give up on its season despite a terrible start, so maybe they decided that was a pretty good strategy to adopt.
The White Sox could have easily given up on their Tuesday night game against the surging Cincinnati Reds despite falling behind 4-0 before they’d gotten an out and 7-2 following Adam Duvall’s three-run homer in the fifth inning.
And given up on the series, too, since the Reds beat them 5-3 on Monday for their 15th victory in a span of 20 games, the National League’s best record since June 10. The Reds also were 7-1 in interleague games.
Instead, the White Sox managed to tie it first at 7-all on a Leury Garcia pinch-hit RBI single in the eighth and at 8-all on Avisail Garcia’s second home run of the game and third of the series, in the ninth.
The White Sox finally broke through to win it 12-8 in the 12th on Yoan Moncada’s bases-full triple that right fielder Brandon Dixon brought back over the wall to prevent a homer but couldn’t keep in his glove, and Yolmer Sanchez’s RBI triple — both off reliever Jackson Stephens.
“The pitch was up and in but I was able to put the barrel on it and get a triple,” said Moncada, who had a three-hit night after coming in with a .191 average in his previous 44 games. “Little by little, the work I’ve been putting in day in and day out, I’ve been feeling better (at the plate).”
Well before the 12th, the White Sox began their comeback as Daniel Palka hit a two-run homer in the fourth, then teamed with Garcia to homer in the sixth. Garcia has a 13-game hitting streak, and is 14-for-30 with four homers and six RBIs in his last six games.
Now, after winning for only the second time in six contests and the sixth time in 19 games Nate Davis Jersey , the White Sox are in position to take the series if they can win Wednesday night at Great American Ball Park. White Sox right-hander Dylan Covey (3-3, 4.82 ERA) will oppose Reds right-hander Sal Romano (4-8, 5.30) in a matchup of pitchers who haven’t faced the opposing team before.
Covey is in a major slump, going 0-2 with an elevated 12.71 ERA with 12 walks and three strikeouts over his last three starts — this after he was 2-0 with a 1.00 ERA in his first three starts in June. His last time out, he surrendered four home runs and eight earned runs in 2 1/3 innings of a 11-3 loss to the Texas Rangers on Friday.
“I made a couple of mistakes they capitalized on,” Covey told reporters afterward. “For the most part I was throwing good pitches. They were just taking the borderline ones and were all over everything that was in the zone. I don’t have an explanation.”
Manager Rick Renteria did.
“I think there were probably a lot of pitches left over the center of plate,” he said.
Or exactly the kind of pitches the White Sox jumped on Tuesday while getting 15 hits in only their second extra-inning win of the season, as compared to three losses. By winning, the White Sox avoided falling to a season-worst 27 games below .500.
The Reds have put together a string of improbable victories while starting to turn their season around after being 3-15 and 8-27. But this was a game in which they couldn’t hold a succession of leads — 4-0, 7-2, 8-7 — as they played more like they did in April.
“It got away from us late, but that’s a good offensive baseball team,” Reds interim manager Jim Riggleman said. “Garcia’s a bear to deal with right now and he got us. … But we had a big-enough lead that we should have put it away in nine (innings).”

The Reds wasted a pair of two-run homers in the first by NL batting leader Scooter Gennett and NL RBIs leader Eugenio Suarez, plus Duvall’s three-run shot and a timely play by Billy Hamilton in which he scored the go-ahead run in the eighth on a ground ball to shortstop against a drawn-in infield.
“(But) we’ve been playing too good of baseball to get hung up on one game,” Reds starting pitcher Anthony DeSclafani said. “I don’t think this game is going to affect us one bit.”
Romano has pitched well in three of his last four starts, with a June 24 outing against the Cubs in which he gave up five runs in five innings being the only exception. He gave up only three runs over 20 innings in the other three starts.
White Sox first baseman Jose Abreu (sore ankle) is expected back in the lineup after sitting out Tuesday for precautionary reasons.