Notes: Greinke looks to feed on emotion
Right-hander's enthusiasm is translating into results thus far
TORONTO -- Every manager wants his players to perform well. But sometimes the interest is more personal than professional. On Tuesday, Kansas City skipper Buddy Bell said he felt that way about the evening's starting pitcher, Zack Greinke.
Having been around baseball for decades, managers like Bell know it is often a humbling game, one in which batters who don't execute seven times out of 10 are still considered successful.
But as the players get hung with wins and losses, the stats are harder on the pitchers. Few starters would expect to lose seven of 10 games and keep their spot in the rotation.
"Sometimes you wonder why you play this game because there's so much failure involved," said Bell. "That's why you have to be so mentally tough. The guys who are really successful are the ones who are tough mentally and able to deal with the failures and always strive for perfection."
Greinke went 5-17 in 2005, so he knows humbling. But Bell roots for the young right-hander because he knows what Greinke went through last season as he struggled to find his passion for pitching.
"The thing with Zack more than anything is that he seems to be enjoying what he's doing," Bell said. "For him personally, that's all I want for him. It's hard to do anything professionally unless you're right personally.
"I'm happy that he feels the way he does now. I just hope it continues. There's no reason that it can't."
Bell admits he feels right along with his players when the rooting interest gets personal.
"That's the fun part of my job and the tough part of my job as well," he said. "You just wish you could do more for them."
Dotel's return delayed: Reliever Octavio Dotel is one of three pitchers at the Royals' Spring Training complex in Arizona. He's working his way back from a strained left oblique muscle.
Dotel had been expected to throw this week but that has been pushed back, Bell said.
"Best case scenario, he won't be back until the 20th," said Bell. "He hasn't really had a setback, we just rearranged his schedule to be a little bit more cautious."
The other two injured hurlers are Luke Hudson and Scott Elarton, who both have shoulder soreness. Each is set to throw 50 pitches on Wednesday.
In need of relief: Odalis Perez only lasted 1 1/3 innings on Monday, forcing the Royals to use four relievers the rest of the way.
Jason Standridge worked 2 2/3 innings while Ryan Braun worked a pair. Bell said he'll try to give Standridge the night off to recover on Tuesday.
"He could probably throw to a hitter or two but we'll probably stay away from him," he said. "Everybody else is pretty well-rested."
Down on the farm: Omaha starter Ben Hendrickson was hammered, giving up six runs in the second as the Royals lost 8-6 in Round Rock, falling to 1-4. The good news? Billy Butler and Graham Koonce slammed back-to-back home runs in the third and Mike Aviles went 3-for-4 with a double.
In Wichita, the Wranglers dropped a 6-3 decision to San Antonio. Jason Cromer took the loss, giving up three runs in 3 2/3 innings. Craig Brazell, Mike Stodolka and Jace Brewer all had two-hit games. The Wranglers are 2-2.
On deck: It'll be a battle of southpaws when the Royals wrap up their trip to Toronto on Wednesday. Kansas City will send out Jorge De La Rosa (1-0, 1.29) while the Blue Jays counter with Gustavo Chacin (0-0, 4.50). Game time is 6:07 CT.
John Peak in an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.