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Power numbers an issue for the Royals so far

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HOUSTON -- The truth about the Kansas City offense's true nature likely lies somewhere between what manager Ned Yost believes about its potential and the weak slugging numbers on display through 11 games.

"I don't really care about the power numbers," Yost said. "We've got guys who can hit home runs."

The Royals haven't backed their manager up, at least not yet, hitting just one home run in their first 356 at-bats and tallying only 111 total bases during that span. Entering Tuesday's game in Houston, Kansas City's .312 slugging percentage is last in the Majors by 21 points, and only two Royals -- Salvador Perez at .472 and Alex Gordon at .450 -- would crack the top 100 individually in the statistic.

Cleanup hitter and DH Billy Butler's slow start has been particularly noticeable, with the slugger failing to record an extra-base hit en route to a .154 slugging percentage in his first 11 games.

Despite power numbers traditionally being low during early April's chilly evenings, Gordon said there's no hiding from the lack of production.

"The weather, slow starts -- that's just excuses," he said. "We're just not hitting for power where we should be. You're aware of it, but you can't change your approach. The extra-base hits and home runs come by swinging for hits, not a specific kind of hit."

The Royals might meet their match for offensive futility in Houston, though. The Astros lost a pair of 1-0 games against Texas last weekend and are the only team with fewer hits this season than Kansas City.

Scores like that may not be uncommon for KC this season, because the power woes have translated to the scoreboard. Through two weeks of the season, the Royals are last in runs scored with 32.

Chris Abshire is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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