I’ve noted a lack of content a lot this month but this is the most sparse Friday yet. Then again, I suppose this won’t get any better in the offseason.
Even though he is already 21, the Royals think that Duarte has a solid future and could possibly end up in a rotation. Duarte could also end up as a solid option out of the bullpen. I think he’ll open next season at Lexington before moving up to Wilmington and possibly NWA by the end of the year. I hope he gets a chance to start so we can see if he can be a viable starting pitcher but this will slow his movement though the system. With the sudden depth of starting pitching in the lower levels, he could move quicker in the bullpen than the rotation. Honestly, it wouldn’t surprise me if the Royals decided to move him quicker and start him at a higher level. Duarte is still a long way from the majors but could find him self there sooner rather than later.
The Star’s Pete Grathoff picked up some Lorenzo Cain quotes about the postseason-bound Brewers:
“I’m big on having a good mix in the clubhouse of younger guys and older guys,” Cain said. “Guys that have done it before and guys that are just getting a chance to experience it for the first time. I just try to rub off on those guys as much as I can just to let them know what I’ve been through as far as postseason.
He also reported on the Royals minor-league awards:
A second straight outstanding season at the Royals’ top minor-league affiliate earned Schwindel the Royals’ Class AAA Omaha Player of the Year award for the second year in a row. The Royals announced their Minor League Players and Pitchers of the Year for all of their affiliates Wednesday.
Finally, hit a home run and get free season tickets. That might be worth coming out to the K just to watch:
On Nov. 1, eligible season-ticket holder will have the chance to go on the field at Kauffman Stadium and take swings at five pitches from a pitching machine. Hit a home run and the fan will win his or her seat for the 2019 season (capped at $10,000 in value). Helmets and wood bats will be provided, so aluminum bats won’t be used. However, a “proxy” can take the swings for the season-ticket holder.
OMD stole my only Royals story for today from The Athletic about Bill Duplissea. It is clear that he is saving up his Athletic Referral Bucks (ARBs) to best my bidding price on their exclusive “One Romantic Night with Nick Cage” auction.
Jeff Passan looks ahead to the free agent class this offseason. The Royals are mentioned exactly zero times.
Listicles? You bet!
Jason Martinez at MLB Trade Rumors looks at “American League Closer Turnover”:
Kansas City Royals | Royals Depth Chart
Opening Day 2018: Kelvin Herrera
September 2018: Wily Peralta
Future Outlook: Soon after Herrera was traded to Washington in mid-June, Peralta emerged from the closer committee to become one of the unlikeliest ninth-inning success stories of 2018. It hasn’t always been pretty, but the 29-year-old has 13 saves in 13 chances and a 9.5 K/9 rate.
After getting booted from the Brewers’ rotation last May, he had a disastrous 11-appearance stint as a relief pitcher (17 1/3 innings, 23 ER, 28 H, 15 BB) before getting designated for assignment in late July. He signed a Major League deal with Kansas City this offseason, only to be designated for assignment again and outrighted to Triple-A. He returned to the Majors one day before the Herrera trade and picked up his first MLB save eight days later.
Peralta has a $3MM club option in 2019, which could very well be exercised. Even if it’s not, he’s remain under team control for one more season via arbitration. While he’s been better than anyone could’ve anticipated in his current role, his 22 walks in 31 1/3 innings serve as a red flag that will likely keep the Royals from locking him into the job next season without some form of competition.
Royals: Whit Merrifield
Merrifield has emerged as one of the most dynamic offensive weapons in the league. He’ll likely win his second straight stolen-base title, and he has a chance to lead the AL (maybe even the Majors) in hits. All that athleticism shows up defensively as well, as Merrifield has turned into a premier super-utility man, ranging from center field to second base to first base. He’s a manager’s dream because of his versatility.
Next week, The Best of Royals Review (TM, patent pending) returns!
Of course, for October playoff baseball, we will be using Royals playoff threads because, well, those were awesome. Then we’re back into traditional “Best of” territory in the offseason.
I’m not going to be able to check in on the thread so don’t burn the place down while I’m away. Of course, that means we’re going to revisit an old game for a new song.
We’ve talked about Final Fantasy 7 at length and I’ve mentioned the Distant Worlds concert series. We’ll put those two things together with a recording of a Distant World performance of “Opening and Bombing Mission”: