Let’s look to the minors with Clint Scoles at Royals Academy. He names his Minor League Player of the Year: Kris Bubic.
The strikeouts were a sight to behold with the first year full season pitcher leading the entire minor leagues with his 185 regular season strikeouts. That total is a number that a Royals pitcher hadn’t seen in 19 years with Ryan Baerlocher striking out 193 in 166 innings in 2000 with Charleston in the South Atlantic League and Wilmington in the Carolina League. The bulk of those strikeouts coming in Charleston. Still, Bubic’s 185 was the second-highest total over the last 25 minor league season in the Royals system and easily the highest mark during the Dayton Moore era. With one more playoff start coming Bubic has a chance to eclipse the 200 K mark between regular season and playoffs before getting ready to start at Double-A next year to begin the push to the only K that matters.
He mentions that Foster Griffin and Tyler Zuber are going to Dominican Winter ball. In that story, he features a photo from one “Minda Haas Kuhlmann”. That name sounds familiar. Just another site with an RR doppelganger. He also reports on the Idaho Fall Chukars playoff run.
If you have your “The Athletic” subscription handy, Jayson Jenks, the Seattle beat writer, writes about Ewing Kauffman
Ewing Kauffman bought the Royals because he loved KC. He refused to spend money on buildings because he liked investing in people. He paid for college for kids who couldn’t afford it, and when he died and sold the Royals, he gave the money to charity. https://t.co/AN14CrvjLb— Jayson Jenks (@JaysonJenks) September 12, 2019
Want more Athletic action (and we want more clicks)? Nate Taylor mentions the Royals in this story about the Chiefs so I figure I can use it.
New story. The Chiefs’ specialists — Harrison Butker, Dustin Colquitt & James Winchester — received an assist from the Royals. The trio prepared for Oakland’s unique playing surface Wednesday by spending some time inside Kauffman Stadium. https://t.co/wd8taAVoWq— Nate Taylor (@ByNateTaylor) September 13, 2019
MLB.com’s Jim Callis predicted the Top 10 prospects a year from now. Not bad. Not bad at all.
3. Bobby Witt Jr., SS, Royals (No. 8)
He’s a five-tool player with baseball IQ and makeup that’s just as impressive as his physical ability -- and some scouts say he’s the Draft’s best shortstop prospect since Alex Rodriguez.
A site I’m not familiar with, Ballpark Digest (author Zack Spedden), suggests “Pending Royals Sale Could Fuel Talks of New Kansas City Ballpark”. It’s a decent overview of what most Kansas City sports fans already know about the stadium situation.
Not Royals related, but Kansas City baseball related: the Kansas City T-Bones paid some money to Wyandotte County and Kansas City, Kansas. It was only $50K of the $760K owed in back rent and payments, but it got them an extension to stay in the park and work on a sale of the team.
Need your Fansided fix?
- KOK’s Ryan Sikes continues to churn out articles at an impressive pace. First, he has a “Prospect Q&A with outfielder Brewer Hicklen”
- He suggests the “Team should pursue Kyle Schwarber in trade”
- He also observes “MLB Pipeline high on Bobby Witt Jr”
- At KC Kingdom, Cullen Jekel slideshows “2020 free agent options, Part II: Batters”
I’ll let you track down your own listicles this week.
There was a lot of noise around a particular topic this week: home runs.
They’re making headlines again this week because MLB set a single season record on Wednesday. Jonathan Villar’s home run against the Dodgers (Oriole highlight of the season?) was number 6,106 for 2019, besting the old record from 2017.
Below are just some of the notable records cataloged by Sarah Langs in the aforementioned article above:
Seattle would go on to homer in 20 straight games total, setting a record for the most consecutive games with a home run to start a season.
The Yankees would go on to post a 31-game home run streak, surpassing the prior record of 27 straight games.
The Twins broke the single-season home run record for any franchise when they hit their 268th on Aug. 31, passing the 267 the Yankees hit last year. But New York hit six on Tuesday night to tie Minnesota at 276.
The Yankees hit 74 home runs in August. Before that, no team had ever hit more than 58 in a calendar month.
Pete Alonso and Jorge Soler have already set their teams’ single-season individual records for home runs.
In May, there were 1,136 home runs across the Majors. That set the record for most home runs in a calendar month, surpassing the 1,119 from August 2017. That record stood for a grand total of a month before June broke it, with 1,142. Then August smashed it again with 1,228.
ESPN’s Dan Mullen discusses a number of other records:
The 2017 season saw 17 teams with at least 200 home runs, the most in a single season in MLB history. There have already been 18 teams to hit 200 HRs this year. We’re on pace to have 23 teams hit 200 homers this year.
Five teams -- the Dodgers, Twins, Yankees, Padres and Astros -- have already set their franchise mark.
Both the Twins and Yankees have blown past the previous single-season mark for a team (267 by the 2017 Yankees) and are in a back-and-forth battle to end 2019 with the title.
There’s also a remarkable chart in that article that shows the days with the most home runs in MLB history and 4 of them are from this year.
R.J. Anderson at CBS Sports looked at multi-homer games:
To wit, there were six multi-homer games on Wednesday, giving the league 414 for the season. That’s the most ever recorded in a single season, and is 18 more than the previous high set in 2017 (396).
Prior to 2017, there had been more than 350 multi-homer games in a season just once -- that back in 1999, at 362, which was around the peak of the so-called Steroids Era.
Additionally, the next three-plus-homer game will be the 22nd of the league season, tying it with the 2001 edition for the most in a campaign.
Want some other stories around sports?
This one’s even home run related. Apparently, Cameron Maybin hugs a teammate after each home run.
Shohei Ohtani is a bit of a card.
Ronald Acuna Jr is getting close to the 40/40 club. He hit the 35/35 mark last night with his 35th and 36th steal and also smacked his 39th home run. Just a reminder of who is in that club:
He sits just one homer and four steals away from joining Alfonso Soriano (2006), Alex Rodriguez (1998), Barry Bonds (‘96) and Jose Canseco (‘88) as the only players with a 40-40 season in big league history.
And then there’s this. It’s basketball related, but, well, let’s just see if anyone actually reads the links in Rumblings.
Finally, I really wanted to pick apart the Switch’s SNES library offerings from last week and pick an SNES game but I’m falling asleep at the keyboard so we’re revisiting Monster Hunter. This is the theme of the main monster for Monster Hunter 4, the Gore Magala: