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Royals Rumblings - News for December 21, 2015

Maybe the Royals should make a Star Wars movie to pay for Alex Gordon.

Jamie Squire/Getty Images

Royals Rumblings - News for December 21, 2015

Jon Heyman reports the Royals are still far apart in talks with Alex Gordon.

The Royals have made it a priority to try to keep star left fielder Alex Gordon. But so far the sides appear to have a sizable gap in talks. Word is, the Royals made a four-year offer, but Gordon's camp is believed to consider it a proposal that's too great a hometown discount, and has sent back discouraging words about the initial try. Gordon is thought to seek a deal closer to $20 million annually, but the Royals may view that figure as far too rich for their blood, even with added flexibility. It would be nice to see Gordon, a homegrown player from Nebraska, remain a Royal for life. But at the moment, that seems to be far less than a certainty.

He also mentions the Royals have financial "flexibility" to pursue a pitcher.

Sam Mellinger looks at the anxiety of fans this off-season despite a championship under their belt.

Gordon, if we’re being honest, is not a good long-term investment for the Royals. If it will take five years and an average salary approaching $20 million to get it done, the Royals will make the difficult but prudent decision to let the defining player of their rise go. All other things equal, it’s probably best for both sides if Gordon gets the kind of offer the Royals are incapable of matching. Sentimentality never won a championship...

It’s worth mentioning that opening-day payrolls and year-end payrolls are almost always very different, and that the Royals’ year-end payroll in 2015 was likely $125 million or more with performance bonuses and other additional costs. The Royals almost certainly have the flexibility to begin the season with a payroll of $120 million or more, but even after another playoff run and record attendance they remain a team that requires efficient spending. Anything less than that after a championship will be a tough sell on fans, but every serious examination of the team’s financials has found appropriate spending for nearly 10 years now.

David Lesky picks up on what could be an interesting development for the Royals next season.

I was listening to the Hot Stove Show on 810 the other night, and they had Rusty Kuntz on as a guest. One thing he kept coming back to that I found interesting was discussing Lorenzo Cain moving over to right field in 2016 in an effort to save his legs a little bit. Cain is obviously an elite defensive center fielder, but he’s also an elite defensive right fielder. If he can maintain his offensive performance from 2015, then that translates to right field just fine. If he can’t, well, that could be a problem offensively. To me, moving Cain to right field only makes sense if the Royals either do give Jarrod Dyson a starting role and play him in center or if they find a way to get a true center fielder either by trade or free agency. Based on the free agents out there, it would have to be by way of a trade. I just don’t want to see them go out and get Denard Span or Dexter Fowler with the intention of shifting Cain to right field because neither are even close to the defender Cain is. Dyson is, so that’s why I’m okay with him there.

Pete Grathoff has his nine best defensive plays by the Royals this year.

The Mets will meet with Denard Span to determine his health. The Royals are also said to be interested.

Detroit adds old friend Mike Aviles.

The Athletics sign pitcher Henderson Alvarez, despite Salvador Perez lobbying for him to come to Kansas City.

Brandon Phillips blocks a trade to Washignton, leaving the Nationals to move on.

The Cardinals are still bitter about Jason Heyward leaving them.

Andy Martino of the New York Daily News gives a nice behind-the-scenes peek at the Winter Meetings.

Is a lively ball to account for the spike in home runs last year?

Nick Lampe at Beyond the Boxscore looks at where each team is so far this offseason.

The Chiefs win again and there are seven-week old kids who have never seen a Chiefs or Royals loss.

Are the Carolina Panthers the most improved team ever?

An incredibly detailed map of Europe's population shifts.

A look at Mother Teresa's path to sainthood.

Todd VanDerWerff at Vox gives his 18 best shows on TV right now.

A stoner sloth is trying to convince Australian youth not to use marijuana.

Your song of the day is Neutral Milk Hotel with "Ghost."