Andrew Benintendi’s tenure with the Royals was not optimal.
After Benintendi was transferred from the Red Sox to Kansas City in February as part of a three-team, seven-player deal, he fought during his first spring training in Arizona, which happened to carry over to the regular season.
In his first 15 games as a member of the Royals, the 26-year-old pitched an overwhelming .193 / .270 / .246 slash line, six walks and 17 strikes over with just three additional hits (all doubles), four RBI and three stolen bases 63 record appearances.
During that time, Benintendi – most notably Kansas City’s # 2 hitter – failed to serve a single ball and scored a dismal wRC + of 51 to prove his efforts.
On the morning of April 21, it looked like the previous round one picks were still on their way to the regression that began in the final month of the 2019 season.
But against the Rays that day, Benintendi did something he hadn’t done in a while: make very hard contact, and he did it twice, rolling up a pair of balls in the fourth and eighth innings.
Both balls the left-handed squared went for lineouts, but the fact that he was more than once in solid contact was encouraging – and a harbinger of positive things to come.
Since then, Benintendi has been on the move lately. He hit the base on Saturday with an eight-game streak and undoubtedly put together his best performance of the season so far against the Twins at Target Field.
The Cincinnati native, who finished in seventh place and started in left field for Kansas City, hit the record with two 3-4 home runs – scoring his second and third homers of the season, two RBI and three runs while leading his squad to an 11-3 win over Minnesota.