Royal Rumblings - BBWAA, Bullpen, Moose, Guthrie

Ed Zurga

A little of this and and little of that.

Last week, I was going to run this article and just a few minutes before I published it, the Royals signed Guthrie. I figured the following information could wait a week. Since then, I have added a bit on Guthrie's injury chances.

End of Year Awards

Two weeks ago, the the BBWAA released their list of award recipients and for the first time since 2006, not one Royal received a vote for any award. Zip. Nodda. Truthfully, maybe 2 Royals possibly deserved a vote, Billy Butler and/or Alex Gordon.

Butler won the team's triple crown with 29 HR, 107 RBI and a 0.313 AVG. He was by far the best hitter on the team. Gordon, on the other hand, was the second best hitter. Besides swinging a nice bat, he was phenomenal in the outfield. At the end of the season, he accumulated 5.9 fWAR which was good for 6th in the AL. I was a little surprised he didn't get one vote, especially not a token one from the KC voters.

Speaking of the KC voters, here is how each of the 2 writers voted in the 4 contests.

Writer Affiliation 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th 10th
MVP










Bob Dutton Kansas City Star Cabrera Trout Cano Beltre Fielder Price Verlander Jones Hamilton Encarnacion
Jeff Passan Yahoo! Sports.com Trout Cabrera Beltre Cano Verlander Jones Hamilton Mauer Hernandez Fielder
Cy Young










Sam Mellinger Kansas City Star Verlander Price Hernandez Weaver Rodney




Joe Posnanski SI.com Verlander Price Weaver Hernandez Sale




Rookie of the Year










Rustin Dodd Kansas City Star Trout Darvish Cespedes






Terez A. Paylor Kansas City Star Trout Cespedes Darvish






Manager of the Year










Bob Dutton Kansas City Star Melvin Showalter Ventura






Nicole Poell Kansas City Star Melvin Showalter Washington






Thoughts

  • Again, it would have been nice if one of the MVP voters would have thrown Gordon a bone.
  • As a whole, I really couldn't could see any glaring issues besides Nicole Poell voting for Ron Washington for Manager of the Year.

Royals' Bullpen Outdone by Colorado's Bullpen

Early in the season, the Royals bullpen was on pace to throw the most innings ever. With the addition of Guthrie to the rotation, the number of relief innings dropped. They did end up with the most relief innings in the AL (561.1 IP, 2.2 IP more than Minnesota). Also, the Royals were able to stay below the team record of 577.2 innings in 2006.

Finally, a nice big shout out to the Rockies who crushed the previous high by almost 60 innings.

Rank Team Year Inning
1 Rockies 2012 657.0
2 Rangers 2003 601.3
3 Mariners 1977 599.3
4 Padres 1977 596.0
5 Rangers 2007 592.0
6 Nationals 2007 590.7
7t Athletics 1997 586.7
7t Marlins 2007 586.7
9 Astros 2003 581.3
10 Royals 2006 577.7
11 Giants 1984 577.0
12 Reds 2002 574.0
13 Rangers 2008 572.7
14 Angels 1980 572.0
15 Padres 2009 571.7
16 Indians 2001 569.0
17t Pirates 2008 567.7
17t Reds 2001 567.7
19t Mariners 1996 567.0
19t Tigers 1996 567.0
21 Red Sox 2000 566.3
22 Orioles 2011 565.7
23 Reds 2003 563.3
24 Cubs 2006 562.0
25t Royals 2012 561.3
25t Indians 1993 561.3

Mike Moustakas loves the outside part of the plate

A couple of weeks ago, I looked at how Moose's batting mechanics where leading him to hitting a high number of infield popups. Some readers wondered about he handles non-inside pitches. Here are for Moustakas swings where he swung at pitches down the middle of the plate and outside.

Middle High

Middleup_medium

Middle Middle

Middle_medium

Outside High

Outup_medium

Outside middle

Outmiddle_medium

Moose definitely has a smoother swing when attacking outside pitches. He will need to make some adjustments if he wants to handle inside pitches the same way he handles outside pitches.

Guthrie - Is he hurt also?

Once Jeremy Guthrie was signed, I looked at his injury index. The injury index looks for slight changes in a pitcher mechanics late in a game which can be indications of an injury (introduced here). Here is a chart of his injury index and fastball speed over the past three years.

Forjeff_medium

He was relatively healthy in 2010. Over the course of 2011, he got more and more inconsistent. In 2012, he was OK, until he imploded on June 12. The main factor that set off the huge spike in the injury index was a significantly inconsistent release point.

Here is his release points over the first 4 innings of the game. Only one point stands out.

Release14_medium

Now, here is his last inning pitched that day.

Release5_medium

He was all over the place. His release points varied by over a foot in the horizontal and vertical directions. He was then moved to the bullpen and later traded to the Royals. Once with the Royals, his injury index drop, but it was not great. Unlike Santana who saw his fastball speed drop as his injury index increased, Guthrie's average speed stayed relatively constant.

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