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Royals Rumblings - News for May 7, 2019

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Can’t always blame the bullpen.

MLB: Game One-Tampa Bay Rays at Kansas City Royals Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports

The Royals lost again last night, but like Craig Brown said yesterday, you can’t always blame the bullpen.

Scott Barlow has been a revelation, retiring the first batter he’s faced 8 out of 11 times, including on Sunday when he entered the game with the bases loaded in relief of starter Brad Keller. Had Yost made the wrong call in that situation, we wouldn’t even be in the position to lament Kennedy’s bad luck in the tenth. Barlow whiffed three, including the two batters he faced with the bases loaded and now sports a 12.3 SO/9. That works.

Rustin Dodd over at The Athletic KC writes about the Royals historic triples pace ($).

The club entered Monday with 19 triples in 35 games — or 0.54 per game. Shortstop Adalberto Mondesi leads all of baseball with six triples and Whit Merrifield is right behind him with five. Together, Mondesi and Merrifield have more triples (11) than all but two teams in baseball, the Rays and the Rockies. Separately, each player has out-tripled more than half the teams in the league.

Over at Royals Farm Report, I previewed five prospects that could be in line for an early promotion.

5.) Josh Dye

Looking for the next Richard Lovelady in the Royals system? Josh Dye may be your answer. The funky left-handed reliever currently owns a 0.92 FIP (2.30 ERA) in 15.2 IP at Lexington, with 15.51 K/9 and just 1.72 BB/9. Dye dominated the Carolina League for 5 innings in a pinch at the end of 2018, and appears to be close to the Carolina League once again. The Royals front office will want the Wilmington Blue Rocks to continue winning in 2019, as they like their cores to make playoff runs, and Dye could go a long way in helping ensure that Wilmington makes the playoffs this year.

Also at RFR, Jordan created a convenient place for you to keep up with all of the pitchers that the Royals drafted in 2018.

Zach Haake’s 1.73 ERA. A gleaming example of the uselessness of pitcher Wins and Losses, the 22-year old righty has opposing hitters flailing without much success so far this season. In a recent interview with Royals’ beat writer Rustin Dodd, J.J. Picollo compared Haake’s fastball to Noah Syndergaard and Brandon Maurer. Whichever it may be, he’s got it working.

Glenn Sparkman is back with the big league club, potentially long-term.

Yost said that Sparkman is dealing with the thing almost every young pitcher faces -- that is, trusting that the stuff that got him to the big leagues is good enough to keep him here.

“These are young guys learning their craft,” Yost said. “Our guys continue to work at it and stay focused on it. It’s not something you’re going to learn in a year or two. It takes a long time to be able to get consistent in your mechanics.”

MLB.com’s mock draft has KC taken Bobby Witt Jr. #2 overall.

Kansas City is focusing on the top tier of four players as well. Witt, a potential five-tool shortstop, is the front-runner as of now.

Nicky Lopez is doing everything he can to reach the big leagues ($).

Lopez, a fifth-round pick in 2016, knows he’s close to achieving that dream. He knows because Royals general manager Dayton Moore said so at the end of last season.

“He’s got great personality,” Moore said of Lopez during spring training in Omaha. “He’s a fan favorite. Our players adore him. The coaches love putting his name in the lineup. He plays with energy. He has a lot of fun. He’s got talent. He’s got ability. We think he’s got a chance to be a part of our middle infield in the very near future.

Scott Barlow continued his impressive run out of the bullpen last night.

Dozier and Mondesi both hit impressive home runs last night:

This is an interesting story over at The Athletic about some disfunction in the Marlins franchise ($).

That dispute was not an isolated incident for Denbo, 58, a longtime mentor and confidant of Marlins CEO and former Yankees great Derek Jeter. Denbo has transformed the organization with his brusque and at times overbearing manner, and he remains a polarizing figure in his second full season with the Marlins, eliciting strong loyalty from those who support him and strong enmity from those who do not.

“I’ve never encountered someone in baseball — or in life, honestly — who seemed to go so far out of their way to treat other people badly, to the extent where you think, ‘Why would anyone do this?’” one former Marlins employee says.

The Cincinnati Reds had a game delay due to a swarm of bees.

“I don’t know if the umpires were joking – they didn’t know who I was,” Dietrich said. “So I got the shirt unbuttoned and the chains popped, I think they got a clear idea it was 2-2 out there wranglin’ ’em up.”

Cody Bellinger is no longer going to play first base for the Dodgers.

An injury update on some high-profile big leaguers.

Pablo Sandoval did it all for SF yesterday.

Identifying one quick fix for all 30 teams ($).

George Strait announces rare concert in Kansas City in January of 2020.

Is Schlitterbahn on its way out of KC?

President Trump awarded Tiger Woods with the Medal of Freedom.

Some teachers are leaving the US to teach abroad.

US accuses China of reneging a trade deal.

On this day in history in 1915, the British ship Lusitania sinks off the coast of Ireland.

Your song of the day is “Living and living well” by George Strait, to celebrate The King’s return to Kansas City.