Royals Rumblings - News for October 5, 2016
Darin Watson at Baseball Prospectus Kansas City looks at why the Royals offense fell off so much this year.
Those strikeouts became a big deal with two outs and runners in scoring position. Last year, the Royals hit .278/.356/.430 in 725 plate appearances in that situation. They struck out 98 times, or 14% of the time. The league averaged .235/.332/.381 and struck out 21% of the time. That was a big advantage for the Royals.
And it went away this year. In 671 plate appearances with two outs and runners in scoring position, the Royals hit .245/.319/.393. They struck out 138 times, or 21% of the time. The league averaged .235/.328/.384 and struck out in 22% of those plate appearances. The Royals were basically league average in that important spot, but for an offense that struggled to score runs via home runs (despite hitting more home runs this year, the Royals still finished last in the league in that category), that wasn’t good enough.
Rustin Dodd writes about how the Royals will try out Cheslor Cuthbert at second base in the instructional leagues.
As a rookie, Cuthbert showcased a nimble athleticism at third base, making a handful of tremendous plays and diving stops. For a stretch, he filled in adequately for Moustakas. Yet according to the most respected defensive metrics — including Defensive Runs Saved and Ultimate Zone Rating — Cuthbert still graded out slightly below average at the corner infield position. His arm was inconsistent at times. His range, according to the metrics, was worse than Moustakas’. Some of this, perhaps, is not a surprise. Rival evaluators grade Cuthbert’s overall speed as somewhere between average to below average. Which means Cuthbert will have to prove that he has the range to play second base.
Bernie Pleskoff at Today’s Knuckleball gives a scouting report of Hunter Dozier.
He made such vast improvement in his overall game this season that he was invited to participate in the 2016 All-Star Futures Game in San Diego.
Playing for the U.S. Team, he was probably the most impressive hitter for power during the showcase batting practice session before the game. He hit some tremendous bombs and caused a great buzz among those of us hanging around the batting cage. In the game he went hitless in one at-bat as a substitute third baseman.
Lee Judge looks at why the Royals fell short of the playoffs this year.
Royals players thank the fans for supporting them.
What on earth was Buck Showalter thinking last night not pitching Zack Britton?
The most painful way each playoff team could lose.
Here are post-season predictions from SB Nation writers.
Astros GM Jeff Luhnow regrets not doing more at the trade deadline.
Marlins manager Don Mattingly couldn’t take Barry Bonds anymore.
What the 2016 strike zone looked like.
Tim Tebow will play in the Arizona Fall League.
A response to the professors in USA Today that think baseball players are getting too fat.
John Kruk is leaving ESPN.
This terrific article explores the bat-flipping phenomena in Korean baseball.
Should teams end the practice of rookie hazing?
The San Diego Chargers claim their proposed football stadium will pump $2 billion into the local economy.
Is Bob Bradley the perfect fit for Swansea City?
Was the explosion of a SpaceX rocket the result of sabotage?
Five domain name battles from the early days of the internet.
Your song of the day is The Urge with It’s Getting Hectic.