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Royals Rumblings - News for July 17, 2014

Another off day? Who the heck made this schedule?????

Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports

Royals Rumblings - News for July 17, 2014

Jonah Keri still picks us to win the Wild Card, thanks to Ned Yost scheduling a cupcake non-conference schedule in the second half of the season.

The Royals led the division less than a month ago after ripping off a 10-game winning streak that boded well for their playoff chances, and though they’ve struggled since, the ingredients for a second-half surge remain: a steady rotation led by pennant race–tested James Shields and young righty-lefty combo Yordano Ventura and Danny Duffy; a bullpen with two lethal weapons to close out games in Wade Davis and Greg Holland; and a lineup that’s finally starting to click now that Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas have shaken off terrible starts. With Shields a couple of months away from free agency and ownership apparently willing to add payroll for a playoff push, acquiring a mashing corner outfielder could be in the cards. This might be the clincher, though: 52 of KC’s final 68 games come against teams with .500 records or worse. At the beginning of the season, I picked the Royals to make the playoffs and end their 29-year drought, so after seeing that stat, I might as well stick with it.

Andy McCullough, in video form, discusses what the Royals need to do to make the playoffs in the second half. Amazingly, none of his ideas involve cutting the brakes of the Detroit Tigers team bus.

Close the book on the Melky Cabrera-Jonathan Sanchez trade, the Royals have dealt Ryan Verdugo to Boston for cash considerations.

KC Sports Nation takes a look at the James Shields trade to determine if it was worth it.

It’s a good deal. Myers was Rookie of the Year last year, big deal. What has he done this year? Odorizzi will never be more than a middle to the back end of a rotation guy and Myers will be just above-JAG (just a guy), but nothing special. He may make an All-Star game or two, but wont standout. It sucks to get rid of prospects. But, if you’re smart about it and selective, it can work out. This one worked. Dayton Moore picked the right prospects to trade. You have to give up something to get something. I don’t get how Royals fans can’t figure out that we would have been worse without making the trade. Not that we’re anything special now, but we wouldn’t have been in the hunt this year or last year without the trade.

Remember the mediocre 90s film "Little Big League"? It was almost about the Royals.

Joe Randa does a nice long podcast at Clubhouse Conversation and talks about how he almost went back to Pittsburgh instead of back to Kansas City, and how Allard Baird was almost his coach.

Jim Bowden thinks the Royals could be players for White Sox outfielder Dayan Viciedo, but argues other players might be a better fit.

Royals manager Ned Yost is openly exhausted waiting for DH Billy Butler to produce; the veteran righty has just three home runs and 36 RBIs, which is just not going to get it done for a DH. A Viciedo acquisition might create competition for Butler and even spark him to get it going. Viciedo also could play right field, although he's well below average there.

Keith Law has his write-up from the Futures Game and writes that Royals prospect Christian Binford had the best control out of anyone he saw.

Binford's stuff is just average, but he has some of the best control of any prospect, fringe or better, in the minors, with 12 walks in 89 2/3 innings this year after walking 25 in 135 last year. His command is also pretty good, but it'll have to improve further for him to be a major league starter, given the absence of any kind of plus pitch.

Did you know the last Royals no-hitter was 23 years ago? Bret Saberhagen remembers, because he threw it. Sabes recounts his 1991 no-no.

Are these ten brands that will disappear in 2015? Is one of them Billy Butler's "Hit-it-a-Ton BBQ Sauce"?

THE GENDER BARRIER HAS BEEN BROKEN! A woman has qualified for Mt. Midoriyama on  "American Ninja Warrior."

Jason Segel and David Letterman debate sandwiches. With all due respect Jason, if you have peanut butter jelly on your top five sandwiches list, and you're over the age of seven, you don't know jack about sandwiches.

Your song of the day is dedicated to David Glass's stance on winning. It is Animotion's "Obsession".