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Royals Rumblings - News for February 8, 2019

Happy Future Alex Gordon Day!

Alex Gordon #4 of the Kansas City Royals reacts as he runs the bases after hitting a solo home run in the ninth inning to tie the game against the New York Mets during Game One of the 2015 World Series at Kauffman Stadium on October 27, 2015 in Kansas City, Missouri.
This moment will be a statue one day
Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images

Over at Royals Farm Report, Alex Duvall interviewed Daniel Lynch:

Q: What was your, “Welcome to professional baseball,” moment?

DL: “My ‘Welcome to professional baseball’ moment had to be getting shipped off to Arizona right after the draft. It was a hectic couple of days trying to get everything together and then most of the newly drafted guys got out there with really no expectations. It was completely new and all a bit overwhelming at first.”

Also at RFR, Josh Keiser looked at the Royals farm system as a whole while using a lot of gifs.

Fangraphs’s Rian Watt’s take on the Brad Boxberger signing was “The Royals Make a Bad Bullpen Better”:

But what we can say at this point is this: the 2018 Royals had one of the very worst bullpens of the last 20 years, and yesterday they went out and did something about it, despite having no real expectation of winning anything at all in 2019. I still think they could stand to bring on a few more relief pitchers, but in this era in which 30 teams seem to be in competition for the 2022 World Series but only ten or so are in competition for the one this October, there’s at least some consolation in what they did yesterday.

Like last week, Fansided is flush with stories:

It’s that time of year again and we at The Best of Royals Review(TM) can’t wait to celebrate. We’re almost to “one of the most cherished children’s holidays”: Happy Alex Gordon Day!

After Nebraska officially recognized the occasion in 2016, Max was kind enough to collect much of the history of this celebration for us in a single article:

“Alex Gordon Day” is a day of great celebration, typically observed on February 9 to commemorate the birth of Alex Gordon. The day is dedicated to honoring hard work and sacrifice, much in the spirit of Alex himself...

Children traditionally wear glovehats at Alex Gordon Day parties, the headwear commonly associated with the man himself. Cake was once expressly forbidden on Alex Gordon Day, but modern custom has loosened up on that restriction. Still, some orthodox Alex Gordon Day observers will feast only on protein bars for the entire day... Adults will commonly celebrate by engaging in “feats of strength” usually involving crunches and pull-ups. The winner of the feats of strength is typically awarded the opportunity to perform more pull-ups while shirtless.

Two major stories and two minor stories:

1) Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient, Hall of Famer, and first black manager in MLB history, Frank Robinson, died yesterday. He was 83 years old.

2) The Phillies traded a trio of high upside/low floor prospects for J.T. Realmuto. Many think the return for the Marlins was a bit light, especially considering their previous trade posturing.


1) MLB renamed the “disabled list” to the “injured list”.

2) Zach/k Britton renamed “Zach Britton” to “Zack Britton”.

Last week, we briefly touched on two games from Kitfox Games: the Japanese-dating-game-meets-dungeon-slasher Boyfriend Dungeon and demon-sacrifice-management-sim The Shrouded Isle. Then, I went on at length about the bullet hell game with awesome music, Just Shapes & Beats (seriously, go try it on the Switch and/or go buy it on Steam or the Switch - I don’t get any endorsement money, I just want more people to play with when I play online multiplayer so I have someone to save me when I die on a level). Today, I’m going to showcase a few more indie games I enjoyed from PAX South.

After a couple of days at the expo, you really feel the gulf between professional games done by industry veterans or talented newcomers and ones that just don’t have it. Two of the easiest ways to judge was by how intuitive a game was and how original a game felt. One of my favorite games on the floor, Mowin’ & Throwin’, checked both of those boxes. In this wildly fun party game, two teams of two lawn gnomes compete to see who can mow their lawns the fastest while sabotaging the other team. It required less than a minute to figure out most of the game and no one was going to accuse this idea of being derivative. Players who sat down for a couple of games even started forming rudimentary strategies like having one player concentrate of defense (mowing the lawn) while the other leaned towards offense (chucking rocks and grass seed at the other team’s lawn).

There were two party games for the Switch that felt fairly similar to me but were fun in their own way. Each involved quick four player mayhem where you were a small simple object trying to destroy or knock the others off the screen. Bombfest featured cute little wooden toys chucking a variety of bombs, each with different abilities, at each other and the interactive toy environs they inhabited. In Zarvot, which also has a story mode I did not play, you are as a little square that fires lasers and shoots out spikes while trying to avoid other little squares that fire lasers and spikes. Both felt simple and fun and could get some raucous crowds at their booths with competition between friends.

Lastly, and maybe my favorite, was The Rabbit and the Owl. In this gorgeous puzzler, the stages are part light and dark. The rabbit can only play in the dark and the owl can only play in the light. The two have to work together with switches, blocks, wind, etc. to get both players to the end of the level. It’s an elegant game with lovely art direction. Below is the trailer.