The KC Star’s Sam Mellinger writes about how this is the worst season of Salvy’s career:
Sal Perez never saw a ballgame he didn’t want to play, a camera he didn’t like or a joke he didn’t want to make. This is his role. This is his way, sincerely, and without supernatural flexibility and a right arm blessed by the baseball gods and superior hand-eye coordination, you can imagine him being the most enthusiastic schoolteacher in the district.
But he was made to play baseball. Made to lift spirits and swing hard, not always in that order, and if you’re around the Royals catcher, you get the sense he knows his role exceptionally well. Knows when to amplify the Salvy-ness, when a goofy dad joke might have the biggest audience and, of course, when the cameras are on.
...This is the worst season of Perez’s life. He will tell you that. How could it not be? This was always going to be a tough year. So many of his friends are gone, the ones he popped champagne with.
A couple of tidbits about football-player-turned-minor-league-prospect Brewer Hicklen:
- The Star’s Pete Grathoff had video of him jumping over a catcher.
- Eric Longenhagen of Fangraphs profiles the “toolsy long shot”.
Here’s your daily articles from The Athletic. For each subscription I get a kitten for my new yard Cat-a-pult (TM, patent pending).
The latest Q&A with assistant Royals GM J.J. Picollo: On the next steps for Brady Singer and Jackson Kowar, the progress of Nicky Lopez, and news on Charlie Neuweiler, Michael Gigliotti and Kyle Zimmer: https://t.co/pPOHtmPpar— Rustin Dodd (@rustindodd) July 5, 2018
Nicky Lopez grew up outside Chicago, watching his dad mash homers in a sport called 16-inch softball. He’s grown into one of the Royals’ best prospects by doing everything else on the field. A story from Omaha on the patient and steady shortstop: https://t.co/Z3iiqaHiVv— Rustin Dodd (@rustindodd) July 5, 2018
The AP’s Dave Skretta gives the basic AP overview of the Royals quick descent.
The Royals, who were indeed baseball royalty in 2015, are now neck and neck with the Orioles for the worst record in baseball. They’ve traded off their star closer, their best players are struggling and the prospects that might one day raise them from the abyss are years away from joining the club. “The record is what it is. The hitting is what it is. The pitching is what it is,” said Royals manager Ned Yost, who presided over the rebuild that led to back-to-back World Series appearances. “I have to continue to lead. We have to make sure this year has not been a waste.” How did things fall apart so quickly?
BPKC’s David Lesky looks at trade opportunities for Mike Moustakas.
Wherever Moose goes, the return is pretty unlikely to alter the franchise as some may have hoped would be the case back in April. But hey, you never know. Sometimes the secondary or tertiary pieces in a deal turn out to be the best. It’ll be a sad day when the Royals say goodbye to Mike Moustakas…again…but it’s a necessary move and it’s coming.
Authors on the Fansided network ask a pair of questions:
- KOK’s Morgan Vogels asks “Should [The Royals] pursue Dixon Machado?”
- KC Kingdom’s Leigh Oleszczak asks “How are the 2018 Royals so bad?”
Since everything else is coming in twos today, a pair of national listicle stories:
ESPN’s Bradford Doolittle checks in with all 30 teams and then hypothetically trades Manny Machado to each.
Kansas City Royals
Current win forecast: 54.9 (Change from June: -7.9)
Current playoff probability: 0.0% (Down 0.7%)
Current championship probability: 0.0%
Manny Bump: 0.00% title probability | 4.2 wins (third)
Everybody must go. Third baseman Moustakas is the one to watch. His contract is more palatable than that of Machado or Donaldson, which the Royals could leverage to get a little better quality of prospect in return. Merrifield would be a solid get for any team with an infield hole, and Danny Duffy has turned it around after a rocky beginning.
MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan takes stock of AL Central teams:
Hoping to accomplish: Fans can take some solace that the Royals’ front office has the big picture in mind, having already dealt outfielder Jon Jay to the Diamondbacks for two prospects, one of which, right-hander Elvis Luciano, is already Kansas City’s No. 27 prospect per MLB Pipeline. Closer Kelvin Herrera was dealt to the Nationals for three prospects, including outfielder Blake Perkins (Royals’ No. 14 prospect) and third baseman Kelvin Gutierrez (No. 7). Deals such as those were the offseason goal for general manager Dayton Moore, whose mission was to restock the farm system. Add in the five college pitchers Kansas City got among the top 58 picks in the Draft, and the system is definitely on its way to being reloaded.
It’s been a short but busy work week so I’m going to revisit a game from before. Since I’m going to a Final Fantasy Distant Worlds concert this weekend, let’s use one of my favorites songs from my favorite Final Fantasy. It’s “The Dreadful Fight” a.k.a the Theme of the Four Fiends from Final Fantasy IV.