Royals lefty was cruising into fifth before allowing walk, go-ahead blast
By Troy Provost-Heron
NEW YORK -- As he walked off the mound and toward the Royals' dugout, Danny Duffy had one fastball on his mind.
For the most part, the left-hander was solid in the Royals' 4-3 loss to the Mets on Wednesday, allowing three runs on four hits over 4 2/3 innings while striking out eight, but a 97-mph four-seam fastball that Mets shortstop Asdrubal Cabrera drilled over the left-center-field wall in the fifth was the difference in his mind.
"I made one bad pitch that really screwed up the whole performance," Duffy said. "I dabbled out there to the best of my ability and left a pitch over, and he nailed it. Even if you go five and dive, that's pretty good to give up one run, but I made a bad pitch and he put a good swing on it."
Before allowing the home run, though, Duffy managed to hold the Mets in check, allowing three hits and a run through the first four innings while retiring seven in a row at one point.
He did, however, have issues with his command, walking four batters while driving his pitch count up over 100.
"[Command] was a little bit of an issue, but not a major issue," Royals manager Ned Yost said. "The thing is, it got his pitch count up a little bit, but I thought he threw the ball pretty well.
"You're not going to be perfect every time you step out there, but what you do is you compete on those days when you don't have your good command, and he sure did that."
Four pitches later, Cabrera gave the Mets the lead with his homer, and then Duffy walked Yoenis Cespedes, ending his outing.
Three Royals relievers combined to throw the final 3 1/3 innings, with Joakim Soria giving up the go-ahead run in the sixth when Mets rookie Matt Reynolds hit his first career home run.
"I want to do more for the guys in the bullpen and I want to do more for my team, and 4 2/3 [innings] isn't going to cut it," Duffy added. "I shouldn't have our late-inning guys [have to think about coming in] in the fifth inning, and I take responsibility for that, 100 percent."
Troy Provost-Heron is a reporter for MLB.com based in New York. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.