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Weekend Rumblings - News for January 21, 2017

Esky will be in the World Baseball Classic.

Minnesota Twins v Kansas City Royals Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images

Weekend Rumblings - News for January 21, 2017

David Lesky at Baseball Prospectus Kansas City considers bullpen arms the Royals might add.

That leads me to the bullpen where I think they pick up at least one more arm and maybe two. What’s interesting is that the possibilities are littered with former Royals. Joe Blanton, Luke Hochevar, Greg Holland, Peter Moylan and J.P. Howell all make varying levels of sense. Add in some other arms like Yusmeiro Petit, Sergio Romo, Joe Smith, Vance Worley and even maybe a Jerry Blevins and the options are there. None of these pitchers are a slam dunk to be great, but I think the Royals have a shot to pick up one or two to help bolster a bullpen that right now looks a bit uncharacteristically weak.

Pete Grathoff looks at the key stretches on the 2017 schedule for the Royals.

Sept. 1-17

At Minnesota (Sept. 1-3), Detroit (Sept. 4-6), Home against Minnesota (Sept. 7-10), White Sox (Sept. 11-13), at Cleveland (Sept. 14-17)

When the calendar turns to September, the Royals play 17 consecutive games against Central foes. All four teams are included in the stretch, including home-and-away series against the Twins, who lost 103 games a season ago. There are no off days during this, so this should be a fun part of the season … provided the Royals are still in the playoff hunt

Matt Kanter at KC Kingdom is optimistic on Nate Karns.

Simply put, the Kansas City Royals are getting a cheap (almost league minimum) power arm under team control through 2020. In 2015, his 3.67 ERA was good for 20th in the AL for pitchers with 140+ innings thrown. And while his 2016 numbers don’t sparkle, his HR rate was down and his strikeout rate was up (he averaged over one per inning, better than both Corey Kluber and Chris Sale).

On top of that, his FIP was over a full point less than his ERA (4.05 compared to 5.15), so we can be hopeful that the Royals defense could help pull that number down to where it belongs this year.

Alcides Escobar will join Salvador Perez on Team Venezuela for the World Baseball Classic.

FanRag ranks Salvador Perez as the fourth-best catcher for fantasy baseball.

The Athletics designate former Royals outfielder Brett Eibner for assignment.

Former Royals first baseman Mike Jacobs lands a managerial gig in the Marlins minor league system.

The Dodgers are interested in Rangers infielder Jurickson Profar.

The best and worst of the 2017 Hall of Fame ballot.

Is it time to lift the limit of ten players on the Hall of Fame ballot?

What would baseball look like if it expanded again?

St. Petersburg bans smokeless tobacco at Rays games.

Most of the country is producing no five-star football recruits.

Another Title IX official quits at Baylor because of intimidation.

Scientists are looking for life on a nearby exoplanet.

Nintendo wants players to look at each other again.

The Good Place ended its first season with a brilliant twist.

Your song of the day is Dexter Gordon with Blue Bossa.