Jeffrey Flanagan reports that Clay Buchholz is looking towards a Triple-A rehab assignment:
Buchholz remained in Surprise, Ariz., after camp broke to continue throwing side sessions and simulated games. He is scheduled to get his pitch count up to 60 on Wednesday in an extended spring camp game.
”We’ll get him on a five-day rotation now,” assistant general manager J.J. Picollo said. “Reports we’re getting is he is looking really good. He’s been pitching aggressively, good cutter so far. It’s about just building his arm strength up.”
Buchholz has a May 1 opt-out if he is not on the 25-man roster, so there is some urgency to see how he’ll perform at Triple-A.
Two Dodd articles behind the Athletic paywall:
The Royals' starting rotation has been among the best in baseball. They're sitting at 3-7 after Wednesday's loss. On the glass-half-full optimism (and concern) from a 10-game sample: https://t.co/uQUkUNYpnd pic.twitter.com/SUzyuFpT32— Rustin Dodd (@rustindodd) April 12, 2018
Shohei Ohtani will be in Kansas City tomorrow. I went around the Royals' clubhouse and asked if baseball has missed out on possible two-way players before. The answers included Vargas, Bumgarner and one surprise. Story: https://t.co/rxh6HvrHMN— Rustin Dodd (@rustindodd) April 11, 2018
Craig Brown suggests that Danny Duffy’s days as the Royals’ top starter may be done:
So is Duffy hurt now? As mentioned, he did miss time twice last year, had surgery last October to remove loose bodies from his elbow and experienced shoulder tightness in his last start of the spring. That’s quite a few trips to the trainers room in the last 12 months. Pitching, after all, is an occupation of attrition. Of course, Duffy and the Royals insist he’s healthy. As long as he takes the ball every fifth day, we sort of have to buy what they’re selling. I remain skeptical the Royals would continue to let their lefty take the ball every fifth day without a clean bill of health.
However, that doesn’t mean he’s not losing effectiveness.
Injuries, like age, take their toll. And sometimes those injuries can accelerate the aging curve. Perhaps what we’re seeing at the moment is a pitcher who’s just lost some arm strength. The decline in velocity has been gradual and consistent, and with it the potency of his four-seamer. Duffy’s velocity has deserted him, and at this point, it’s not coming back.
BP’s Jarrett Seidler previews the Sally League, including the Lexington Legends—or the (lone?) bright spot in the Royals farm system.
Leigh Oleszczak posits that Alex Gordon’s contract is shaping up to be the worst in franchise history.
Are we underhyping Shohei Ohtani?
Need more Ohtani content? This great piece at the Hardball Times looks to the Negro Leagues to see who we shouldn’t be ignoring in the two-way star comparison game.
Russell Carleton attempts to explain Gabe Kapler’s management.
Well, at least the Marlins seem to be playing it relatively straight with their terrible attendance numbers.
Elvis Andrus broke his elbow.
Decade-long G-Leaguer Andre Graham had quite the NBA debut.
The Korean Basketball League is kicking out its leading scorer David Simon (probably the same one responsible for The Wire) for being too tall.
The Lower Rio Grande River is one of the most endangered rivers in the country.
Mightn’t Nicolas Cage make a great Joker? Cage-iacs unite.
Governor Greitens sounds like he might be a bad dude.
Spotify Premium subscribers can now add Hulu to their subscriptions for $0.99/mo.
The song of the day is “Don’t Get 2 Close (2 My Fantasy)” by Ween: