KANSAS CITY -- In his never-ending search for runs, Royals manager Ned Yost sought help from the numbers analysts in the front office.
"I had our statistical guys make up an optimum lineup for us by the way we're going against right- and left-handed pitching to take any advantage of it," Yost said.
As a result, the latest lineup wrinkles on Wednesday night against Twins right-hander P.J. Walters had Eric Hosmer moving up to the No. 2 spot behind Alex Gordon and Salvador Perez going to the No. 3 spot ahead of Billy Butler.
"They liked Salvy in the three because he's a contact guy with power, they liked Hoz in the two for the left-handed advantage behind Alex [Gordon]. Billy in the four, obviously," Yost continued. "They liked [Lorenzo] Cain in the five but I had a hard time having three lefties in a row, especially since they've got three lefties [in the bullpen]. So we put Moose [Mike Moustakas] in the five, Cain in the six to break up the lefties."
So that meant two lefties, Gordon and Hosmer, followed by two righties, Perez and Butler, and lefty Moustakas. Cain, a righty, was followed by lefties David Lough and Chris Getz and righty Alcides Escobar.
At evening's end, the Royals were celebrating a 4-1 victory from this new lineup.
Would those stats guys get a bonus?
"Not yet," Yost said. "We'll see how it works tomorrow."
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. Kathleen Gier is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.Less