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Royals Rumblings - News for April 16, 2018

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Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim v Kansas City Royals Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images

Royals Rumblings - News for April 16, 2018

The Royals aren’t panicking after a slow start, writes Rustin Dodd.

These are the day-to-day woes of a struggling team that is struggling. To this point, the Royals have avoided the kind of frustration that can eat at a clubhouse. The room has remained upbeat, players say, as the season is still young. Whit Merrifield, who made his first career start in center field on Saturday, said the team was “in good spirits.”...

“It’s pretty understood,” Merrifield said. “Guys are in a good place. We know we’re going out there, we’re putting in the work. We’re playing hard, and we’re doing things that we think we need to do to win.”

Colby Wilson at Baseball Prospectus Kansas City gives the sad truth on Blaine Boyer.

Last year, Boyer threw 384 fastballs, averaging 94.2 mph. The year before, 92.8 on 573 pitches. The fastball might be washed, kids. The fastball doesn’t come back for 36-year olds unless MLB decides to suspend PED testing and if that happens, we’ll get my beautiful son Jorge Bonifacio back in the lineup and I won’t care what Blaine Boyer is up to anyway.

Should you (wrongly) think, “Well, Boyer has other offerings, just throw less of the fastball,” I’m here (rightly) to correct you. Boyer’s breaking ball may be one of the most hittable pitches in baseball. Here are the locations for balls in play off Boyer’s breaking offerings this year. They’ve averaged 90.4 exit velocity. Seven have gone for hits—that .500 average is fourth-worst in baseball.

Lee Judge is back with the Star, giving a guide to defensive shifts.

Yost has said he doesn’t want to call this an experiment, but he’s willing to get out of his comfort zone and give an increase in infield shifts a “wholehearted try.”

It’s still very early in the season, and so far the Royals’ shifts appear to have helped them at times and hurt them at others. But the club’s analytics department believes if the team sticks with the program, shifts will pay off in the long run.

The Royals and their fans are about to find out if that’s true.

Wednesday’s Royals/Blue Jays game will broadcast exclusively on Facebook with former pitcher Jeremy Guthrie on the call.

Salvador Perez homered in his first rehab start for Northwest Arkansas.

Fans were not happy with the way the game was postponed on Sunday, but it may have been MLB’s fault.

Here’s what a Mike Moustakas home run in the snow looks like in slow motion.

An oral history of the Royals/Red Sox game following the Boston Marathon bombing.

Mike Moustakas (Royals third baseman): I don’t even know the words to describe how I felt. It was an unbelievable feeling to watch him talk and watch the city rally around the Red Sox…. All I remember is being there and feeling how sports could heal in times of need.

Royals players reflect on the legacy of Jackie Robinson.

Alex Gordon will be inducted into the Nebraska High School Sports Hall of Fame.

Bartolo Colon was perfect for seven innings last night.

The six wildest decisions made by Gabe Kapler in his first two weeks as Phillies manager.

The Orioles are a team in upheaval, writes Ken Rosenthal.

Mike Matheny’s bilingual skills have been a huge asset for the Cardinals.

Preston Tucker’s hot start may delay Ronald Acuna’s debut with the Braves.

Does Alex Rodriguez regret not signing with the Mets?

Jackie Robinson’s dream was to see African-Americans infiltrate the managerial ranks, but has enough progress been made?

A youth baseball coach planned to bean a female player to get her to quit.

Are Gregg Popovich’s rude answers to the media getting old?

Let’s smash every mock NFL draft together.

Western tourists begging for money in foreign countries has become a status symbol of sorts.

NASA is about to launch an exoplanet-discovering telescope.

A man has his ban at a hotel lifted after an incident 17 years ago involving a suitcase of pepperoni and seagulls.

The Netflix documentary Wild, Wild Country is a microcosm of a messy world.

Your song of the day is Talking Heads with Wild Wild Life.