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Royals Rumblings - News for February 10, 2017

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Duff is back on Twitter, doing good things.

Cleveland Indians v Kansas City Royals Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images

Royals Rumblings - News for February 10, 2017

Sam Mellinger writes that the Royals did a good job navigating a brutal off-season.

Nothing is certain except the fact that baseball is unpredictable, but as the Royals enter what is likely their final season with most of their championship core together, it’s hard to see how they could’ve done much better this offseason.

“I feel better about this group of players than I did going into the 2014 season,” general manager Dayton Moore said. “More trusted performers, more experience, and players that know how to win and appreciate what’s at stake.”

You do not need to be reminded that the 2014 season went all the way to Game 7 of the World Series, the breakthrough on the Royals’ path from trash to trophies.

Jeffrey Flanagan writes that this is an important year for Eric Hosmer.

"There is still a ceiling there," Moore said recently. "There is still potential for growth. But we know that he is the type of player that can carry a club."

And that's what the Royals may need from Hosmer this season: to be a difference-maker.

Hosmer's performance dropped dramatically after that MVP performance in the All-Star Game. From July 20 on, Hosmer hit .217 with a .286 on-base percentage and a .665 OPS. No one could pinpoint the issue, including Hosmer.

"Just one of those things that happens in baseball," Hosmer said after the season.

Danny Duffy talks about returning to Twitter, to help out the community.

“I just kind of feel that it’s almost irresponsible to not use the platform that you have if you use it for good,” Duffy said. “I’ve come a long way from three or four years, tweeting every 30 minutes about something. My sole purpose for Twitter is just to use it to try and help the community and be an advocate for Kansas City in things that improve the city.

“I care about this place so much, it’d be a shame to not use the opportunity to spread the word on things that are constructive....

“I’m just going to tweet out stuff that will help out. Back then, I would have argued with a fifth grader. I’m 28 now. I’ve seen a lot, I’ve learned a lot. There’s nothing but positivity coming out of me now.”

Jim Bowden at ESPN gives the Royals a “B-” in grading each team’s off-season.

They will continue to try to sign or trade their remaining four potential free agents, with Escobar the most likely to be re-signed before free agency.

Their best under-the-radar move was the pickup of power bat O'Brien from the Diamondbacks. He will compete for playing time at DH, and if he can make some adjustments with his swing and close some holes, he could be a surprise power producer this season. The tragic death of Yordano Ventura left a huge void in the Royals' starting rotation that will be difficult to fill, but they're nearing a deal with veteran Jason Hammel that should help them at least fill those starts and innings.

David Schoenfield at ESPN tries to predict All-Star rosters way too early.

This is tricky because Royals fans have stolen a couple All-Star starting nods in recent years, including for Eric Hosmer last year and Alcides Escobar in 2015. ... I’ll give them Perez again for his fourth straight All-Star start.

Pecota contradicts PECOTA.

Fox Sports Kansas City will air three of Yordano Ventura’s most memorable starts today.

Clint Scoles at Baseball Prospectus Kansas City takes a look at the Alec Mills trade.

Former Royals pitcher Jeremy Affeldt will broadcast Giants games this year.

The Nationals and Red Sox will play an exhibition game at the U.S. Naval Academy.

Pitcher C.J. Wilson retires to open car dealerships and race cars.

Jeffrey Loria has a handshake agreement to sell the Marlins for $1.6 billion.

Is the Major League ace an endangered species?

Travis Sawchick at Fangraphs has ideas on how teams can innovate.

Charles Oakley says he was kicked out of the Knicks game for no reason.

The Big 12 is withholding a quarter of Baylor’s revenues until institutional changes are made.

The myth of Apple’s great design.

Americans are driving less, but not walking more - they’re just staying home.

We know a bit more about the plot of season two of Stranger Things.

Your song of the day is The Cult with She Sells Sanctuary.