Royals Rumblings - News for January 13, 2015
Jeffrey Flanagan at Fox Sports Kansas City takes a look back at the Royals "what-ifs".
GAME 4: THE VARGAS AT-BAT
The Royals were up two games to one and seemingly on their way to a commanding 3-1 advantage in the Series as they smacked the Giants with four runs in the top of the third and led 4-1. And pitcher Jason Vargas was up with the bases loaded and two outs. Vargas took a 2-2 pitch inside and humorously lost track of the count and began trotting toward first base, thinking he had drawn a huge walk.
Vargas came back to the plate, sheepishly, and took another pitch on the 3-2 count -- this time he was called out on strikes. But the thing is, the 3-2 pitch was in the same spot as the 2-2 pitch -- a few inches inside, replays showed. What if that 3-2 pitch had been correctly called a ball? The Royals would have led 5-1, and had the top of the order up. Maybe, just maybe, the rout would have been on.
Instead, the Royals didn't score again and got buried 11-4.
Aaron Stilley at Royals Authority takes a look at the Royals Hall of Fame ballot and comes up with a rating system of worthiness.
Kevin Seitzer ∙ 89
Seitz is similar to Fitzmorris in that group of the very best Royals careers that fall just shy of hall-worthiness. My silly hall rating is anything but definitive, but Seitzer has the highest hall rating of any player under 100. He put together four strong offensive seasons between 1987-90, accomplished by hitting lots of singles and doubles and actually taking something called "walks," a foreign concept for most Royals throughout team history. His .380 OBP is best among the 39 humanoids who have 2,000+ plate appearances for KC. That alone is enough to make him a strong candidate for the hall, and I’d be happy to see him elected. But he really only had two truly excellent seasons, and overall probably ranks around the 15th most productive hitter in team history on a counting basis. Very good, but not quite enough in my book.
Hunter Samuels of Kings of Kauffman looks at Yordano Ventura as a contract extension candidate.
One other name I thought of while looking up numbers for this piece was Chris Archer of the Rays. Archer received a six-year, $25.5 million deal in April of last year, after throwing 128.2 innings with a 3.22 ERA in his rookie year. The Rays also have a pair of team options totaling $20 million that could keep Archer in Tampa through the 2021 season.
I’m sure the Royals would love to get Ventura to sign a contract like Archer’s, but Ventura is 3 years younger, and has 50 more innings under his belt than Archer had last year. They are similar pitchers, and I love the Archer deal for the Rays, but I just think it’s going to take more money to lock up Ventura.
Because he has so much going for him, why would Ventura want to sign an extension? If he remains productive and healthy, he’s likely going to make more money in arbitration than the contract would guarantee him, and he could hit free agency a year sooner, when he would be 28 years old. A young, frontline starter on the free agent market gets paid a lot of money. A lot.
The Royals handed out some hardware on their team, naming Lorenzo Cain "Player of the Year", Wade Davis "Pitcher of the Year", and Yordano Ventura "Joe Burke Special Achievement Award." No award was given for the "C. Montgomery Burns for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence."
Who participated in the most percentage of runs for their team? Alex Gordon finished eleventh in the American League last year.
Mark Armour and Daniel Levitt are writing a book ranking the top 25 general managers in baseball history. I wonder if Dayton Moore makes the cut.
Jeff Sullivan at Fangraphs takes a quick attempt to measure team depth.
Here are dates to know for salary arbitration. The Royals have nine cases upcoming.
Should there be a "designated tweeter" in the dugout for team selfies?
The Hardball Times asks how baseball can improve the fan experience.
Why Boston is not going to get the Summer Olympics, despite being the American bid city.
The Ohio State University, a fine academic institution that produces handsome and talented bloggers, is your national champ in football after defeating the Oregon Ducks. Here is your complete coverage of the championship game.
Will dropping cable really save you money? Calculate the cost!
Spiderman in Japan is, as you would expect, completely insane.
Marvel's "Avengers: Age of Ultron" has a trailer.
Your song of the day is the unofficial alma mater for The Ohio State University, "Hang on Sloopy" from The McCoys.