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Weekend Rumblings - News for July 9, 2016

The Zen of Ned.

Billy Hurst-USA TODAY Sports

Weekend Rumblings - News for July 9, 2016

David Lesky at Baseball Prospectus Kansas City mulls over the trade deadline.

If the Royals can get to the playoffs, I will like their chances because we’ve seen what this team can do. But I don’t love their chances in a one-game playoff with their current starting rotation. Personally, I don’t think it’s worth trading off what little high end talent they have in the system just to try to win one game. Had they missed the playoffs the last two years, I’d say do it. Get there and see what happens. But I see a team that’s been hurt badly by injuries and looks to get back the bulk of a core that has missed a lot of time this year. I’m not saying I’d sell. Not at this point. But I am saying that I don’t think I’d buy. Not heavily at least. Look at what’s out there. Do you think Josh Reddick and Rich Hill make the Royals a contender to make up more than a few games over the final 77? I really don’t. There’s no need, to me, to deal guys who could help this team remain relevant following the exodus of the championship core for the chance to maybe win that one game. We’ve seen first hand how crazy it can be. I do understand the other side of it, but I just don’t agree with it.

Ned talks trees.

Jon Paul Morosi writes the Royals are looking for pitching help.

Kansas City's rotation has accounted for the fewest innings of any in the Majors this season. On the trade market, the Royals are looking for starters capable of giving them innings; they'd love quality, but quantity is the more pressing concern. For now, sources say the Royals are evaluating a number of trade targets who will become free agents after this season; Hellickson is part of that pool, as are Rich Hill, Jorge De La Rosa and Andrew Cashner, who has made one start since returning from the disabled list.

Dayton Moore knows the starting pitching has been a problem.

"An area of vulnerability," Royals general manager Dayton Moore said before the game at Kauffman Stadium. So it’s an area they are striving to address.

"We’re evaluating the landscape of who perhaps will be available," Moore said, noting the market doesn’t figure to feature the dynamic likes of Johnny Cueto and others available a year ago.

"But you never know. Perhaps there will be some surprises." That being said, Moore added emphatically, "I think all of our guys are capable of performing better."

Lee Judge liked that the Royals are aggressive at the plate.

In 2016, the Royals team batting average is .272, but when they put the first pitch in play it’s .387. It’s pretty simple: pitchers want to get ahead in the count by throwing strike one. If they can get that first pitch in for a strike they can begin to expand the zone; aim for the corners and use those secondary pitches.

Take strike one and if the pitcher is any good, you’ll start seeing sliders, curves and change-ups thrown in tough locations to hit. If the pitcher’s not any good, be patient: he’s likely to fall behind in the count and you’ll see more than one good pitch to hit. But when a pitcher is throwing strikes, the best pitch of an at-bat might be the first pitch and Royals hitting coach Dale Sveum has given his hitters permission to hit it.

Hunter Dozier tops the Baseball America "Prospect Hot Sheet."

The Scoop: He got thrown out stealing? What a bum. Seriously, Dozier’s bounceback season hit its peak this week, when he hit nearly .600 and reached base nearly two-thirds of the time. The Royals asked Dozier to cut back his swing a bit and he’s improved as a hitter without losing any power.

Andrew Edwards has replaced Brooks Pounders as Omaha's representative to the AAA All-Star Game.

Clubhouse Conversation talks with Royals prospect Matthew Strahm.

The conspiracy behind the Royals hot dog races.

Raul Mondesi is the only Royals prospect on Baseball America's Top 100 mid-season list at #55.

Former Royals outfielder Carlos Peguero is headed to Japan.

Robinson Cano and Wil Myers are among the participants in the Home Run Derby.

Mets pitcher Matt Harvey will have season-ending surgery.

Who should host future All-Star games?

Three first-round picks have yet to sign with the deadline looming.

A Yankees prospect gets suspended after voicing displeasure to an executive.

Twitter is looking to ink a deal with the NBA and MLS to stream games live.

Jon Bois looks at an NBA without the three-pointer.

Theranos CEO Elizabeth Holmes gets banned from running a lab for two years.

The internet has a crush on Pokemon Go's Professor Willow.

Your song of the day is Coleman Hawkins with "I Want to be Loved."