The Royals have been plunked 23 times this season. Twenty-three! That is EASILY the most number of HBP in baseball! (Leading the Phillies, who have 18). They have hit a total of 5 opposing hitters. One must be thinking - well, the Royals' pitchers, generally, since 2003, have had far more control than opposing pitchers, right?
In 2007, Between the Royals and their opponents, each side has drawn exactly 50% of the walks in those ballgames.
In 2006, the Royals' pitchers walked 637 men, good for most in the American League. The Royals drew a stunningly low 474 walks. Yet Royals' sluggers were still hit the majority of the time - getting plunked a total of 64 times over the season - 4th most in the AL, compared to the 60 plunkings the opposition received.
Throughout the past five seasons, 2005 was the only year that Royals pitchers plunked more oppositing hitters than the numbers of times the Royals' offense got plunked.
In 2004, Royals pitchers issued 518 walks - 53% of the walks either issued or received by the team. The Royals' offense drew 461 walks - 47%. Yet our hitters were plunked 20 (!) more times than the opposition!
In 2003, it was no better. Despite the fact that our pitchers were (as always is the case) wild as molasses, our hitters were still plunked 9 more times than the Royals' opponents!
Of course, Angel Berroa accounts for a significant percentage of HBP. He was plunked 47 times from 2003-2006.
In total, from 2003-2007, the Royals have been hit by a pitch 301 times. The Royals' notoriously wild pitchers have hit 261 total - that's 40 fewer batters!
Our notoriously wild pitching staff has obviously not been as notoriously wild as our opponents.
Year / Total HBP / Total BB / % walks / % HBP
2007 HBP: (Hitters) 23 85 walks 50% 82%
2007 HBP: (Pitchers) 5 85 walks 50% 18%
2006 HBP: (Hitters) 64 474 walks 43% 52%
2006 HBP: (Pitchers) 60 637 walks 57% 48%
2005 HBP: (Hitters) 63 424 walks 42% 46%
2005 HBP: (Pitchers) 74 580 walks 58% 54%
2004 HBP: (Hitters) 76 461 walks 47% 58%
2004 HBP: (Pitchers) 56 518 walks 53% 42%
2003 HBP: (Hitters) 75 476 walks 46% 53%
2003 HBP: (Pitchers) 66 566 walks 54% 47%
Study the numbers above. Have the Royals developed a reputation as a team that gets plunked, but won't retaliate? The numbers above suggest that it is so. Not that it's necessarily a bad thing. Or is it?