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Royals Rumblings - News for March 23, 2017

Arizona Diamondbacks v Kansas City Royals
Let’s get Karny
Photo by Jennifer Stewart/Getty Images

Marcus Stroman led Team USA to victory in the World Baseball Classic championship game.

Eric Hosmer was selected unanimously as All-WBC Team member.

From the champions, tournament Most Valuable Player Marcus Stroman of the Blue Jays (2.35 ERA, six-plus scoreless innings in final), Eric Hosmer of the Royals (unanimous choice) and Christian Yelich of the Marlins were selected. Stroman, as WBC 2017 MVP, joined Japan's Daisuke Matsuzaka (2006 and '09) and the Dominican Republic's Robinson Cano (2013) as MVPs in Classic history.

Nathan Karns was dominant in yesterday’s win over the Padres:

Royals right-hander Nathan Karns, in his first start since winning the No. 5 spot in the rotation, was dominant. Karns went six innings and gave up four hits, no runs and no walks while striking out nine. He threw 72 pitches, 54 for strikes.

"After the last couple of outings went kind of rough," Karns said, "we decided to dial it in early on and we had some success."

Craig Brown assesses the Royals’ newly minted fifth starter, Nathan Karns:

The change is a good pitch. Not as good as his curve, but good enough. And Karns is smart enough to know it’s his third best pitch which is why if you reference the usage table above, you’ll see he has yet to throw it more than 13 percent of his pitches.

Overall, Karns has the stuff that could allow him to pitch above the fifth starter’s slot. If he can get on top of his fastball, the pairing with the curve could be lethal. And as he continues to find the comfort with his change, it can continue to be an effective third pitch. He may never be the guy who can rip through a lineup more than twice, but he’s always been the Royals best option for the back of the rotation.

Looks like it’s time to give someone $200M.

David Lesky weighs in on what’s been going on in spring training, including this on Jason Vargas:

While Nate Karns is the relative unknown in the Royals rotation, I’m most worried about what Jason Vargas will do during the 2017 season. You all know he missed a huge chunk of 2015 and most of 2016 and had Tommy John. He’s a veteran who never relied on elite stuff anyway, so it’s hard to say how he’ll come back. If he’s the Vargas of 2014, the Royals rotation has a chance to actually be pretty good. We just don’t know, though.

What he showed in Scottsdale against the Diamondbacks on Tuesday was kind of what I expect from him throughout the season. He was uneven. By my count, he didn’t locate a fastball where he wanted it until the third inning, but he made it through the first four innings with just one run allowed on a home run to Chris Herrmann. What stood out to me was how good his changeup was, and that’s something that he’ll need to carry with him during the season. It wasn’t always a swing and miss pitch, but it helped him to retire batters on weak contact and eventually set up his fastball to look better than it did in the early going.

He exited in the middle of the fifth after throwing 74 pitches. What concerned me is that by that time, he looked like he was tiring. I guess that’s not a huge deal because there’s still a couple more starts left for him in spring training, but I’d like it for him to not look like he’s on the verge of a blowup with only 74 pitches. The fastball was still sitting around 85-88 mph, but he was definitely starting to wear down. Ultimately, I was satisfied with what I saw, but there are some things that could be problems during the regular season.

Eric Roseberry looks at Lorenzo Cain’s fantasy prospects for 2017.

Episode five of the Star’s Crown Chasers series is up.

Travis Wood is fine with his relegation to the bullpen.

Hasta luego, David DeJesus.

Jeff Zimmerman made his bold predictions for 2017 that we have to be sure to remind him of when they don’t pan out.

Jeff Sullivan takes a gander at what happens when pitchers have to face Noah Syndergaard in the box.

This quote from a New York Times piece about the WBC Championship game should serve as your reminder that Ian Kinsler is probably a tool:

“I hope kids watching the W.B.C. can watch the way we play the game and appreciate the way we play the game as opposed to the way Puerto Rico plays or the Dominican plays,” Kinsler said. “That’s not taking anything away from them. That just wasn’t the way we were raised. They were raised differently and to show emotion and passion when you play. We do show emotion; we do show passion. But we just do it in a different way.”

The Conor McGregor / Floyd Mayweather fight might actually be happening.

Chris Pratt promises that Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 2 is better than Citizen Kane.

Michael Shannon is considered the front-runner to play Cable.

The song of the day is “Samurai” by Joakim.