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Royals Rumblings - News for November 7, 2014

Can Raul Ibanez give the same rousing clubhouse speeches in Tampa Bay that he did in Kansas City?

Joy R. Absalon-USA TODAY Sports

Royals Rumblings - News for November 7, 2014

Jeffrey Flanagan writes that Dayton Moore's mission this winter is to keep the pitching strong while replacing James Shields.

"Do we need to make a big splash in free agency?" Moore asked rhetorically. "I don't believe so. We're going to continue to rely on our core of young players to get better each year."...

"It's going to be awfully difficult for us to win negotiations with top-line free-agent pitchers," Moore said. "That's why we have to continue to stock our pipeline and continually try to graduate guys to the big-league level."

There are some curious free-agent options below Jon Lester, Max Scherzer and Shields, who are considered the top-line free-agent starters.

The Royals are expected to kick the tires on over-30 pitchers such as Francisco Liriano, Ervin Santana and, yes, even Jake Peavy, who struggled against the Royals in the World Series but had an excellent second half for the Giants and is the type of fierce competitor Moore covets.

Mike Moustakas is locked in as the Royals third baseman for 2015. EXCITED?

"It would be very difficult to find a better alternative for us than Mike Moustakas at third base," Moore said. "Not that we’d be looking. But he’s definitely our third baseman going forward."

Read more here:

Tony Blengino at Fangraphs looks at just how good the Royals were in 2014.

So what do we have in the Royals? A relatively poor offensive club, with above average team defense – though possibly not as great as suggested by other methods – and slightly above average pitching. Convert everything in the above tables to run values, apply their defensive multiplier, and do some final Pythagorean magic, and the 2014 Royals are an 80-win club, way short of their actual 89-73 mark. Calculating a team’s projected record using this method actually yields very similar results to the Pythag approach, with only a couple of clubs per season breaking materially out of their projected win total range. For the second year in a row, the Royals have broken way out to the upside.

Would the Royals swap Alex Gordon to the Mets for Daniel Murphy and Rafael Montero? This Mets fans thinks so.

The Mets could provide a good match for Kansas City due to their need for starting pitching. The Mets have a lot of young controllable arms in their system, so it appears to be a given at least one will be flipped for a bat this winter. Andy Martino of the Daily News has indicated that a trade of Rafael Montero and Daniel Murphy would probably work for the Royals. The Royals are expected to lose James Shields in free agency this winter, so Montero could slot right into their starting rotation. Murphy would also give them a quality major league hitter in return for Gordon, who is due 13 million dollars in 2015. The swap of Montero and Murphy for Gordon would also save the Royals five million dollars, allowing them to address other areas of need.

Drew Jenkins at Fansided says Alex Gordon is one of the most underrated players in baseball.

How much money that one win above replacement is worth is a bit up for debate, but it is generally agreed to be worth between $5 and $7 million. Even when using the lower end of this range at $5 million, Gordon was worth $33 million of value in 2014, which results in a surplus value of $23 million.

It looks even crazier if you put it in the context of 2011-2014. Using fWAR, Gordon has created $85.1 million of surplus value in that timeframe. Simply put, the Royals are getting an incredible amount of production for a great cost.

The entire Royals coaching staff will return in 2015. Even Pedro Grifol.

Royals bench coach Don Wakamatsu and Raul Ibanez are candidates for the Rays managerial job.

Baseball Prospectus has their Executive of the Year candidates. Not so fast, Dayton Moore.

Alex Rodriguez pees on the floor. What do you expect from a centaur?

The Chiefs are hosting a home game in London. Get the fish and chips ready for the tailgate!

Bill Simmons is trying to get fired.

Vox asks why are peanut allergies on the rise?

Phil Plait at Slate says "Interstellar" is a bad movie with bad science.

Your song of the day is Ray Charles with (Night Time is) The Right Time.