A surprising stat hurt the Kansas City Royals in disappointing Game 2 loss to Oakland

The Kansas City Royals struggled to contain the Oakland Athletics for the second consecutive night.

This time, the Royals issued a few costly walks, and it resulted in a 5-1 loss on Wednesday night at Oakland Coliseum.

Royals starter Cole Ragans issued consecutive walks in the third inning. The Athletics took advantage as both runs came around to score. Oakland sluggers Miguel Andujar and Brent Rooker each recorded RBI singles.

Later, the Athletics strung together two additional runs in the seventh. Rooker struck again as he added his second RBI against Royals reliever John Schreiber.

Athletics second baseman Zack Gelof sealed the victory with a solo home run off Royals reliever Dan Altavilla.

In total, Royals pitchers issued seven walks in the game. That’s more than double their season average, which sat below three entering the game. KC ranks No. 16 in the majors avoiding walks, which is an emphasis of the team’s “Reign the Zone” approach.

Meanwhile, KC’s offense was silenced early. KC registered eight hits, but it didn’t amount to much on the scoreboard. Royals star Bobby Witt Jr. accounted for the lone offensive production.

Witt laced an RBI double down the left-field line in the fifth inning. It was his 20th double of the season as designated hitter Nelson Velázquez scored.

However, the Royals failed to build any momentum. Oakland starter Luis Medina picked up his first win of the season after allowing one earned run in 5 ⅔ innings.

Ragans took the loss. He allowed two earned runs and struck out seven batters. Additionally, he surrendered four walks, which resulted in the early deficit.

KC dropped to 41-34.

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Here are more notables from Wednesday’s game:

Dan Altavilla exits with injury

Altavilla left Wednesday’s game in the eighth inning. He walked off the mound with the Royals training staff after grabbing his side.

The Royals replaced him with fellow reliever Chris Stratton. He was able to avoid further trouble in the eighth inning as the Royals trailed by four runs.

Altavilla pitched two-thirds of an inning before departing. He allowed the solo homer to Gelof and threw 10 of 20 pitches for strikes.

What’s next on the KC Royals’ schedule?

The Royals conclude their three-game series against the Athletics on Thursday afternoon. KC will send right-hander Seth Lugo to the mound in the matinee game.

Lugo leads the American League with 10 wins. He owns a 2.40 ERA and recently picked up his 50th career victory in his last start.

The Athletics will start right-hander Mitch Spence. He is 4-3 with a 3.95 ERA this season.