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Royals Rumblings - News for February 19, 2020

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Jorge Soler will be even better in 2020, building on progress he has already made, writes Jeffrey Flanagan.

“He’s a beast,” Matheny said. “Just watching him as a young player in Chicago, there were just a lot of holes [in his swing]. If you made a mistake, he’d make you pay. But we thought we had some spots we could go to on him.

“But to watch that progression for him to recognize those holes and then put a plan together to combat it — I saw last year they would try to beat him [high in the zone], but now he can splash those. I watched in awe last year to see what he could do, especially at The K.

Will Leitch at is high on Adalberto Mondesi, tagging him as a breakout candidate in 2020 in a list of such candidates for all MLB teams:

Royals — Adalberto Mondesi, SS: He led the Majors in triples (10) and stole 43 bases — despite only playing 102 games. Imagine if he played 162.

Kauffman Stadium has new foul poles, in part to accommodate cables for the forthcoming netting.

Alec Lewis’s latest mailbag at The Athletic ($) includes more about Mike Matheny being open to openers:

“I’m wide open to it,” Matheny said. “You’ve got to go club-by-club with it, but we’re talking about the fifth starter. Why would you not take that into consideration?”

Last season, Zimmer and Staumont pitched in that role at Triple-A Omaha and excelled. The option could serve as another way to bide time for the young starters if the Royals feel as if they need more of a mental challenge before reaching the big leagues.

Confidence is the secret ingredient boosting Bubba Starling, writes Hayley Lewis at KSHB:

“Just overcoming those struggles, staying confident. Showing up every day, being positive, being a good teammate,” Starling said. “I think if you take care of those things, you’ll be better on the field. It will just take care of itself.”

Royals Reporter ponders Khalil Lee’s timeline for making it to the Majors:

Of course, while the looping swing can produce majestic, Ken Griffey, Jr.-esque long balls, it can also generate its share of empty swings at the plate. Last year, Lee struck out in 28.2 percent of his at-bats, not exactly a great sign that his contact-tool is Major League ready just yet. On a positive note, Lee did post a walk rate of 11.9 percent and a BB/K ratio of 0.46, which is reasonable considering his high strikeout rate. Lee is a patient hitter and works deep into counts, but it will be interesting to see how his contract and strikeout rates develop as he gains more experience as a professional hitter.

You can watch some spring training games!

The MLB commissioner apologized for calling the Commissioner’s Trophy “a piece of metal.”

Old friend Lane Adams was signed to a minors deal by the Twins.

Oakland A’s fans can no longer hear their team on a radio - all games will be streamed online, only.

The Padres and Red Sox seem to be talking about a Wil Myers trade.

The new boost to minor league pay isn’t enough, writes Rian Watt at FanGraphs.

A peek at the prospects of the Detroit Tigers.

MLB Trade Rumors is hiring.

The Cleveland Cavaliers are making a coaching change.

Rosario Dawson is not straight, though she did not specifically attach a word to her identity. (Multiple outlets are reporting this as “comes out as LGBTQ+,” which misses the point that each of those letters actually mean their own thing, and Dawson is not all of them.)

It turns out, baby meerkats are ADORABLE, per Zoo Miami.

The cute baby animals are a preemptive palate cleanser for the following:

I was called for jury duty on Monday, but was not selected. It was for a murder trial, in the stabbing death of a man whose body was found in a Council Bluffs alley in October. From the opening statements, it sounds like the case will depend entirely on which side’s expert witnesses can persuade the jury that their theory of time of death is correct. The defense said the victim was killed around 7:30 p.m. on Sunday, October 27, at which time the defendant was out of town. The prosecution does not dispute that he was out of town at that time, but they say the murder happened much later, at least 9 p.m., by which time the defendant was back in Council Bluffs. Figuring out time of death is so much harder than the fictitious medical examiners on L&O and CSI make it out to be. There should be a verdict on Friday in this case.

Let’s go back to 1992 for the Song of the Day: Collin Raye - In This Life.