Yost moves run producers to top of lineup

Yost moves run producers to top of lineup

KANSAS CITY -- The Royals need some run production and manager Ned Yost is turning to his power hitters for help. Before Thursday night's matchup with the White Sox, Yost moved Alex Gordon back to the leadoff spot, with Eric Hosmer, Salvador Perez and Billy Butler rounding out the top of the order.

"The four guys at the top of the order are our run producers and when they're producing, we're doing OK. Generally, when they're not, we're struggling," Yost said. "It's four guys we have a lot of confidence in and as soon as they get back on track is when we'll get back on track."

The sooner, the better since the Royals had lost four straight games and seven of their last nine while scoring three runs or fewer in eight of them.

"They've all been out of their approach here lately, swinging at pitchers' pitches instead of sitting and waiting for a pitch that they can drive," Yost said. "It just gets them refocused on what they are trying to accomplish every time they step into the box."

In the same nine-game stretch, the Royals batted just .217 (66-for-304) and a measly .118 (9-for-76) with runners in scoring position.

"There's not a lot I can do," Yost said. "These guys have to go out there and produce, but the one thing I can do is put them in a different spot, give them a different mindset, and see if that gets them going. Every once in a while they just need something to get them going, just a change or something to get them going a little bit. I'm hoping this will get them all going."

Kathleen Gier is an associate reporter for MLB.com. Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.