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Royals Rumblings - News for August 18, 2017

This Friday is Sonic-themed

Kansas City Royals v Baltimore Orioles
Photo by Patrick Smith/Getty Images

The Indians and Royals are competing to raise money for local food banks:

Through Monday, August 28, the Indians and Royals will compete to see which fan base can raise the most money for local food banks as part of this year's "Step Up to the Plate" campaign. All donations made through the Tribe will go to the Greater Cleveland Food Bank, while Royals donations will go to the Harvesters Community Food Network of Kansas City.

Old friend Craig Brown finds that the Royals, well, read for yourself but it’s unsurprisingly historic:

The Royals are not only leading the league in swing rate in 2017, they are poised to become the most hactastic team in history. (Or at least since 2002 when swing rate was first recorded. But given the trends, probably history.)

Lorenzo Cain is hot:

Cain has been on fire for Kansas City since the start of August, going 25-for-60 (.417). That continued on the Royals' eight-game road trip, as he went 14-for-33 (.424) against the Cardinals, White Sox and A's by focusing his approach on hitting the ball up the middle.

MLBTR looks at players who could opt out after this year, including Ian Kennedy (and some former Royals like Holland and Cueto):

Kennedy’s results have improved slightly since the last opt-out update, but it’s hardly enough to make it likely that he’ll opt out of that significant guarantee.

The KC Star looked at the Royals new hand gestures and the eight Royals Sonic slams. More about Sonic below (well, different Sonic).

Max Rieper appeared on Joshua Brisco’s new show on 1510 ESPN in Kansas City to talk Royals.

Danny Salazar is back!” proclaims Mike Podhorzer at Fangraphs. Who is Sunday’s pitching opponent? Aw, nuts.

Jered Weaver, former Angel (and, apparently Padre for this year) and brother of Mike Sweeney punching bag Jeff Weaver, retired at 34.

Fangraphs updated their top 100 prospect list for the summer and there is nary a Royal to be found.

Is Yasiel Puig’s new approach about to pay some huge dividends?

CBS looks at the digital divide between owners and players (and their agents):

The ongoing data revolution has obscured a simple fact. With teams receiving improved information, their greatest competitive advantage is perhaps no longer over one another. Rather, the information gulf now resides between the teams and the players -- or, precisely, the players' agents.

I’m pretty sure this was only mentioned in Rumblings comments and not posted. Even if it was (I couldn’t find it), it bears repeating: The Rangers are giving away an on-deck circle mouse pad as part of an Adrian Beltre promotion.

Who doesn’t want to see (cool) nerdy eclipse posters from the National Park Service?

What with the political stories of the past week, I haven’t done a lot of reading on other topics so we’ll dig into some old leftovers classics instead.

I’ve already linked to a couple Wait But Why stories about more high science material. This is my other favorite from the blog, which is a very different tone than those. This one tackles why (we) procrastinators procrastinate and the never ending conflict between the Rational Decision-Maker and the Instant Gratification Monkey.

Sonic the Hedgehog burst onto the scene back in 1991. It was fast, it was fun, Genesis does what Nintendon’t. But in the 25 years since, the fast franchise has never quite been able to keep up. Nintendo has had Mario evolve with the times and drive progress with Mario 64 basically inventing the 3D platformer, Super Mario Galaxy perfected that formula and is one of the best reviewed games of all time, and Super Mario 3D Land is still the best autostereoscopic 3D game ever created. Unless we're talking about the Mario & Sonic at the Olympics series (which has sold over 20M copies: who knew?), the best Sonic has been able to do since leaving the Genesis is Sonic Adventure's 2.5M in sales on the doomed Dreamcast.

So if you cannot seem to escape the 16-bit age, embrace it! The newest entry in the series, Sonic Mania, manages to just be so Sega: unapologetically full of great gameplay and inside jokes, including some hilarious Easter eggs that only hardcore fans are going to get. It has been garnering praise from all corners, like this example from the game’s Kotaku review:

Sonic Mania is a celebration, a digitized block party of blistering speeds and bright worlds. Sega’s decision to hand their famous mascot over to fan creators and artists has paid massive dividends, creating a game that is not just a welcome return to form but a raucous, delightful experience.

Yes, Sega let some independent fans design a Sonic game and it looks great. In light of what will hopefully be a renaissance moment for Sega’s blue mascot, let’s look at Sonic’s very first outing. A link to the Green Hill Zone music can be found here. A replay of the entire Green Hill Zone is our video for today