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Royals Rumblings - News for December 17, 2018

What grade would you give the Royals’ off-season so far?

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Dayton Moore looks at the product on the field he has constructed. Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images

Royals Rumblings - News for December 17, 2018

Jim Bowden at The Athletic hands out off-season grades for each team so far.

The Royals signed center fielder Billy Hamilton to a one-year contract which will dramatically improve their overall outfield defense. In fact, with Gold Glover Alex Gordon in left, Hamilton in center and Brett Phillips in right, one could now argue it’s the second-best defensive outfield in the AL, behind only the Red Sox. The Royals also continue to reduce payroll at the major-league level as they build up their emphasis in scouting and player development.

Grade: C-

John McCarty at KC Kingdom likes the upside of Sam McWilliams.

The Royals chose a tall right handed pitcher in Sam McWilliams in the Rule 5 draft. Control issues (3.6 walks per nine innings last season at AA) and a knack for giving up home runs (13 in 100 innings at AA in 2018) have hindered his progress. However, his development of a change up to go with a fastball and slider made him an attractive option to take a flyer on for a Royals organization stuck between competing and rebuilding.

Alex Duvall at Royals Farm Report looks at comps for McWilliams, and compares him favorably to Brad Keller.

As you can see, McWilliams has a pretty significant edge on Keller in the K/BB department, and in inducing swings and misses (SwStr%). Keller did a better job of limiting HR and inducing ground balls, but part of that can be attributed to the fact that McWilliams is 6′ 7″ and has a different pitching style.

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Manny Machado will visit the Yankees and Phillies this week.

Wilson Ramos heads to the Mets on a two-year deal.

The Nationals sign Matt Adams.

The Red Sox are penalized for going over the luxury tax threshold, including having their draft pick moved back.

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Craig Edwards at Fangraphs reports that the standard reliever contract is back.

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