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Royals bring back Mitch Maier, Roman Colon on minor league deals

The space in which we discuss the Royal futures and pasts of Ryan Jackson, Mitch Maier, Brandon Jacobs, and Alex Liddi.

Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

The Royals have not made a significant move since cleansing the fetid detritus from our Morales/Rios/Volquez-tainted palates with the signing of Kris Medlen, but that doesn't mean they haven't made largely insignificant moves.

Reports roll in of teams lusting over former Royals outfielder Carlos Peguero who seems now to be drawing comparisons to Wily Mo Pena. While those comparisons probably give Peguero more credit than is due as he surely lacks the 80-grade power that Pena possesses, his agents over at Proformance have to be pretty pumped that teams appear to be buying that line. Unfortunately for the Royals, no one bought their "oh, he could totally be our part-time DH and corner outfielder" smokescreen.

Carlos Peguero may have been a 40-man casualty who left the organization after better players were added to the roster, but Ryan "Org Depth" Jackson was outrighted to Omaha. The Plains States breathe a collective sigh of relief, this sigh being mostly the byproduct of hoping that the living members of the Jackson Five--Tito, Jermaine, Marlon, and, of course, Ryan--will kick out the National Anthem each day at Werner Park. Also he plays shortstop, a position which the Royals organization don't really have much in the way of major-league ready depth. Having touched cleat to major-league dirt in 20 separate games(!), Jackson clearly fits the bill of being maybe almost sort of major-league ready. He has after all spent 88.7% of his minor-league career playing shortstop. Consider him 2015's Paul Janish/Pedro Ciriaco, both of whom look to be wearing different uniforms this coming season.

The Royals also assigned Mitch Maier to Northwest Arkansas again for 2015. While the assumption is that Maier will serve as a sort of player/coach'mentor/lover/veteran/orator/arcwelder once again, his letter-writing ability will surely be what the franchise really wants their new camp counselor to instill in his charges. Maier also provides the major-league club with disaster insurance in the outfield and bullpen.

Adding depth at third base and a potential platoon partner for Mike Moustakas in the form of right-handed former prospect Alex Liddi, the Royals unwittingly added a player whose personal and prospect history are both shrouded in mystery. In his age-21 season, Liddi crushed PCL pitching while playing for the Tacoma Rainiers. Playing half his games in a park that favored pitchers over right-handed batters, Liddi still managed a .259/.332/.488 split with 30 dongs hung in 138 minor-league games. Of course, Liddi whiffed at alarming rates in his September 2011 cup of coffee, and after a brief return to form following a June demotion to Tacoma, Liddi's K-rates settle in over 30% at pretty much every stop between then and now.

While Liddi's prospect star is fading to somewhere in the dwarf class of prospect stars, it is his family's flight from the ignominy brought upon them by his grandfather G. Gordon Liddy's place at the heart of the Watergate Scandal that is even more surprising. After the imprisonment of one of the key White House Plumbers, Liddy's children fled to Europe changing the spelling of their surname just enough to blend in to whichever country upon which they settled.

In the case of the "Liddi"s, they landed in the town of Sanremo on the Italian Riviera, where young Alessandro was born, completing what they thought would be a total immersion in their new Ligurian digs. His father Augustine's cover story had plenty of holes. As the story goes, Augustine was obsessed with baseball after moving with his family to Beverly Hills while he was in high school. After claiming to move back to Italy, his father instilled in his son a love for the game, teaching him in his backyard, but his was a love that could only have been born from a childhood spent entirely in the United States with an American father who thought himself such a patriot that his son must love his nation's pastime. Assuming that his paternal baseball activities would be limited to having a catch as fathers and sons have done misty-eyed since the release of Field of Dreams in the year of Alex's birth, Augustine taught his son too well, and eventually Mariner scouts Wayne Norton and Mario Mazzotti stumbled upon their little secret in Taiwan of all places.

It was only after moving to the states and being tracked down by his infamous grandfather that young Alessandro found out about the political misdeeds of his unscrupulous agnostic grandpappy, though Liddi would tell nary a soul of his family's shameful lineage that had seemingly been swept under the rug so effectively.

Liddi's platoon against southpaws at the major-league level has been a non-abysmal .231/.302/.385 slash with a .304 wOBA and 96 wRC+ in a scant 86 PA. Having been the first born-and-raised Italian to step on the field in the majors since Reno Bertoia in 1962, Liddi obviously faced historically weaker competition than nearly everyone else in the high minors and majors. There's theoretically a chance that he may eventually be able to identify pitches and not just crush mistakes, but that's not something that the Royals can assume is even remotely likely to happen.

Back to old buds, Roman Colon rejoins the fold on a minor-league deal, per this tweet:

The 35-year-old right-hander hurled laced orbs for the Brother Elephants last year in Taiwan. He has asked that he be able to wear the Brother Elephants uniform while pitching for Omaha but awaits clearance from the Pacific Coast League brass.

Also mentioned in the above tweet, the final minor move the Royals made was to sign Brandon Jacobs to a minor-league deal. In addition to being Michael Jacobs's son, Brandon Jacobs was the power-hitting Boston prospect sent to the White Sox organization for Matt Thornton. A few short months later, Jacobs was packing his bags once again, this time heading to Arizona as a piece in the three-team melee that ended up sending Adam Eaton to Chicago, Tyler Skaggs back to Anaheim, and Mark Trumbo to Arizona. Somewhat puzzlingly, Jacobs struggled mightily after being dealt both times, despite playing at levels at which he had already logged time.

While some would assume that Jacobs might just hang it up, the toolsy left fielder seems like he will give it one more shot. This seems especially surprising given the hard times his family have fallen upon. With the relaunch of the ___ Meets World franchise on *shudder* basic cable, the hardship that the Jacobs clan are going through couldn't be kept under wraps any longer. The need to go back to the same tired well let the entire entertainment industry know that the fortune amassed on the shoulders of Ben Savage and Danielle Fishel had been squandered on reps in the batting cages and private coaching for Jacobs. Ever prideful, Michael Jacobs--no, not the perma-chawed former Royal "first baseman"--attempted to keep his struggles from the family and the world, but heading into this offseason, he gave his son the "just one more year" ultimatum. If son Brandon doesn't right the ship, he'll be packing his bags and taking the next plane to Burbank, where he will begin to learn the family trade in the television industry.

It has been verified that Brandon Jacobs harbors a mean crush on Topanga.