Weekend Rumblings - News for April 10, 2015
Kansas City Star beat writer Andy McCullough answers questions in his mailbag.
Q: Do Royals think it is likely that one of Medlen/Manaea/Finny/Zimmer/Almonte challenges for a rotation spot by mid-year?
1. Brandon Finnegan: He already impressed the big-league staff with his poise last October. Now Finnegan returns to the minors, chastened by a rough debut spring training, but committed to developing as a starter. He showed the three-pitch blend with Texas Christian University en route to the College World Series. His slider can be hellacious, and Finnegan showed enough confidence in his changeup to best Jacoby Ellsbury with it in his first big-league encounter.
As long as he stays healthy, Finnegan will almost certainly contribute to the big-league staff this season. He pitched in the World Series last year. He could start a playoff game this time around.
Craig Brown resurrects the term we all came to love last year: Royals Devil Magic.
It’s as if 2014 never ended. We are suspended in time, just before the clock strikes midnight on December 31, 2014. In sweeping the Chicago White Sox for their first three wins of the new season, the Royals proved they haven’t lost their touch from last October.
The Royals polished off the Sox in myriad ways. They won the blowout (Monday), the comeback (Wednesday) and the pitching and defense special with the timely hit (Thursday). They say there is more than one way to skin a cat and likewise, there is more than one way to win a ballgame. The Royals provided three days of evidence of that.
Paulo Orlando's story is a great one, and one of the better feel-good stories of the young season.
He talked about his major league debut at age 29. He talked about his upbringing in Brazil. He talked about his teammates' joy for him.
Everything he talked about, he did so with patience and purpose -- traits easily attributed to the outfielder who spent 1,017 games in the minor leagues before debuting in the majors. Then, one sentence reminded the onlookers how different Orlando's life was from a typical big leaguer.
"I want to check my phone now and see the news in Brazil," Orlando said.
The Royals could be a dangerous team, says Ed Moore of Kings of Kauffman.
If this gameplay works, then the Kansas City Royals will no longer be the beloved Cinderella team that nearly won a World Series: They will be the most feared team in the American League with an arsenal of tools to pick apart any rival. If what we have seen in this very minute sample size carries for six strong months, then the Royals will be the most complete team in baseball. Move on over, Washington Nationals.
Other items of interest
It looks like Game of Thrones the HBO show will run out of source material soon, making an interesting quandary.
Here's an interesting take on racial segregation in terms of where people live.
Your photo gallery for the week involves window dressings in Soviet Europe. Where are all the Royals signs????
GoPro video from space. No further comments.
Hilary Clinton is officially running for president. I'm not sure anybody is surprised, but you never know.
Your weekend piece is Jean Sibelius' famous symphonic poem Finlandia, premiered in July 1900.