8/17/2014 9:30 P.M. ET
Royals prospect Zimmer makes season debut
By Dick Kaegel and Jackson Alexander / MLB.com
KANSAS CITY -- Right-hander Kyle Zimmer, the Royals' first-round pick in the 2012 First-Year Player Draft, made his season debut on Sunday.
Zimmer's first action came for Rookie League Idaho Falls against Missoula, where he started the game and faced the first three batters. He allowed one hit, one walk and retired one hitter before departing in Idaho Falls' 4-1 win.
"He was excited to be out there and felt great," Royals assistant general manager J.J. Picollo said. "Zim was 96-98 [mph] and threw a couple of good curveballs. Everything was down in the zone. The hit he gave up was on a curveball. He threw 11 pitches."
On May 27, the Royals announced that their No. 2 prospect, according to MLB.com, would miss six-to-eight weeks with an injury to his right lat.
The club had hopes of Zimmer pitching at the Major League level this year after an impressive 2013 season. Zimmer recorded 140 strikeouts in 108 1/3 innings across two levels last year, and ended the season at Double-A Northwest Arkansas by logging a 1.93 ERA in four starts.
Guthrie weathers delays to nail down victory
MINNEAPOLIS -- Royals starter Jeremy Guthrie had pitched through 3 1/3 innings when rain delayed Sunday's game against the Twins. Play was held up for 54 minutes, often long enough to cause a pitcher to end his day.
The veteran Guthrie, however, came back and finished seven innings to get credit for the Royals' 12-6 victory.
"He does that as well as anybody, he's done that before," manager Ned Yost said. "Our timeline with young guys is 45 minutes. With our older guys, it can be an hour to an hour and 15 minutes. But Jeremy, it just seems like anytime we have these kinds of days, he's on the mound."
Last year, Guthrie weathered a similar delay at New York, the third time he'd done it that season. He has a plan for such interruptions.
"I threw a couple of small innings, about 12 pitches. I think I did two of them," Guthrie said. "I sat down for about 20 minutes, stretched and then did seven warmups, and 12-to-15 pitches."
Guthrie remembered doing about three simulated innings last year at New York, which also resulted in a victory.
"I should be a rain delay All-Star," he said at the time in New York.
The trick is for Guthrie to throw enough to stay loose and not cool down during the delay. The warm weather in Minneapolis undoubtedly helped as well.
"I wasn't surprised he came back because he was throwing in the cage," catcher Salvador Perez said. "He was throwing every 15 minutes, keeping loose. We wanted to get him at least five innings so he'd get the win."
Guthrie did that plus two, finishing with a total of 100 pitches.
"Just to be able to maneuver through that made it a great day for us," Yost said.
Yost prides himself on tracking threatening weather on Internet sites and is rarely wrong with his predictions about playability of games. On Sunday, he kept going from the dugout to his office to check the radar "for peace of mind."
Toward the end of the game, he didn't like weather patterns he saw heading toward Minneapolis.
"All this stuff is firing up. That could be tornado-type stuff in Nebraska," Yost said, pointing to the screen after the game. "That's borderline purple. It's all firing up."
Yost didn't want another delay at the end. He wanted to wrap up the win and head back to the hotel.
"We needed to get those last three outs," he said.
Reliever Kelvin Herrera got them for him.
Dyson gets call over Cain against lefty Milone
MINNEAPOLIS -- Royals manager Ned Yost made an unusual lineup move for Sunday's game against the Twins' starting pitcher, left-hander Tommy Milone.
Yost used left-handed-hitting Jarrod Dyson in center field instead of right-handed-hitting Lorenzo Cain.
Solid reason: Milone has actually been hit better by left-handed batters (.274) than righties (.263) in his career.
"He's kind of a poor man's [Tom] Glavine," Yost said. "Eight-eight miles an hour, sinker away, changeup, and is really good at it. Real good changeup and lefties kind of take that changeup away a little bit. Lorenzo's 0-for-9 against him lifetime and after four punchouts last night ..."
Cain had four strikeouts in four at-bats in Saturday night's 4-1 loss to the Twins.
Milone was making his first start at Target Field for the Twins after being obtained from Oakland for outfielder Sam Fuld at the non-waiver Trade Deadline.
As it turned out, Milone lasted just 1 1/3 innings and gave up seven runs in the second. He walked Dyson the only time he faced him.
• The Royals' 12 runs on Sunday matched their season high. They won, 12-2, on Aug. 3 at Arizona.
• Billy Butler is on a six-game hitting streak in which he's 9-for-25 (.360). And he's hit safely in 12 of his last 13 games at a .393 (22-for-56) clip with 10 RBIs.
• Perez's home run gave him the team high of 15, one more than Mike Moustakas.
• Of Alcides Escobar's 42 RBIs this season, 13 have come against the Twins.
• Josh Willingham's home run for the Royals was his 35th at Target Field, most by any player all-time at the park. All but two were hit for the Twins.
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. Jackson Alexander is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.