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Royals Rumblings - News for March 9, 2016

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Bees. Baseball. Battlestar Galactica.

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Royals Rumblings - News for March 9, 2016

The bees were back to disrupt the Royals in their spring training game against the Rockies.

In his Twitter Tuesday, Sam Mellinger doesn't think Wade Davis can be a Cy Young candidate, despite his brilliance.

I have what might be considered a bias here, but I believe that except for a circumstance so rare I can’t think of it, the Cy Young awards should go to starting pitchers. There is just soooo much more value in 220 innings than 70.....

He is otherworldly as a relief pitcher, even better than I thought he’d be when I was being mocked for saying he’d be a very good relief pitcher. But there’s a reason the Royals traded for him as a starting pitcher, and a reason he went to the bullpen only after failing as a starter.

The Royals are pretty set at the MLB level, which gives prospects more time to develop.

"There's definitely pros and cons to each way," Hosmer said. "When I was coming up, my first couple years there wasn't really a veteran presence or veteran leadership going on in here. There were guys helping but all the guys that were supposed to be older guys were two or three years into their careers. "I think that's so cool about the organization now," he said.

"The big league roster in the field is pretty much set, so the young guys that come up, they're able to learn, see how everything is done."

Will Leitch at Sports on Earth predicts the Royals will win 86 games, second in the division behind Chicago.

It's still tough not to be at least somewhat bullish on the Royals, though, if just because this feels like a group of players with complementary skills all peaking at the exact right time. They have a ceiling, but you can't explain away Lorenzo Cain, Eric Hosmer, Alex Gordon (welcome back!) and Sal Perez by saying "October kismet!" These are excellent players who have already secured their place in Royals lore and history. This team just won the World Series, for crying out loud.

There will be no dismissing them here. Uncle! But: The keys to the Royals' success have always been facets of the game that are somewhat unpredictable -- specifically, the bullpen. Wade Davis essentially has to be Mariano Rivera -- not just the best closer, but the best over the span of multiple seasons -- and almost no closer has that sort of staying power anymore. Can Kelvin Herrera be just as good this year? Joakim Soria? Tim Collins? Bullpens fluctuate wildly, even the Royals', and if they get even a slight downtick in that area, the rest of the roster isn't constructed in a way to make up for it.

Grant Brisbee writes that Ian Kennedy is among the most intriguing players in the division.

He allowed 31 homers last year, despite pitching more than half of his games at Petco Park. That's like an impossible Xbox achievement that no one really expects to get. He should be proud, really. But the Royals aren't paying for that. They're paying for what Kennedy can be, what his improved strikeout rate hints at. They're also paying for the durability, sure, but they're mostly paying for what they think Kennedy can be.

Laugh if you want, but first remember that Edinson Volquez was the Game 1 starter for a World Series-winning team. The Royals -- and their defensive wunderkinds around the diamond -- seem to have a knack for finding slightly worn pitchers at the yard sard and restoring them to their former luxuriousness. Even though Lorenzo Cain can't help bring the home runs back in the park, there's no question that an improved defense will help Kennedy dramatically. He's moving from one of baseball's worst fielding teams to one of the best, so this is almost like an experiment in a laboratory setting.

Rany Jazayerli is counting down the top moments of the last two Royals seasons.

The Royals are projected to have the 15th-highest payroll in baseball.

The Orioles sign former home run champ Pedro Alvarez to a one-year deal.

The Braves and Marlins will play a regular season game at Fort Bragg.

A Red Sox prospect breaks his hand in a fight with a teammate.

Former A's prospect Grant Desme left baseball to become a priest.

Jarrod Dyson shows up on this Baseball Prospectus list of the best inside-the-park home runs of 2015.

Tamba Hali returns to the Chiefs, signing a three-year deal.

The Big 12 Tournament begins today, here's your complete coverage.

Could Google one day be your cell carrier?

An entire field of psychology may have been debunked.

Amazon looks to take on Hollywood.

Your song of the day is Blind Melon with "No Rain."