Royals Rumblings - News for March 19, 2020
Jeffrey Flanagan looks at where roster battles stood when spring training was suspended.
But interestingly enough, Kansas City also had kept right-hander Brady Singer, the team’s No. 2 prospect per MLB Pipeline, in camp. And Singer was scheduled to make at least one more start in Spring Training, suggesting that the Royals were seriously considering him as the No. 5 guy. That plan likely would have included having Singer stay in extended spring training to be stretched out if the season had begun on schedule. Kansas City has not been enslaved to roster manipulation in the past, meaning that even though having Singer join the rotation that early in April would have chewed up a year of his service time, the Royals are more concerned about winning now.
Alec Lewis has a discussion comparing the Royals to the Tigers rebuild.
The club believes they’re closer than even experts might think. It’s not just pitching prospects Brady Singer or Jackson Kowar or Daniel Lynch or Kris Bubic, each of whom has continued to surpass expectations in talent and performance. It’s also Austin Cox, Jonathan Bowlan, Jonathan Heasley and others. The Royals selected all of these pitchers in the 2018 MLB Draft. The first four competed in big-league spring training. Organizationally, the Royals have spoken about 2021 as the year they’d be more aggressive. By then, prospects such as Bobby Witt Jr. could be coming down the pipe, opening a window for contention as early as 2022 or 2023 — if the club’s starting pitching prospects continue to progress.
He also writes about some of Rex Hudler’s zany baseball cards.
Clint Scoles at Royals Academy profiles outfielder Nick Heath.
One of if not the fastest player in baseball he has legit 80-grade speed that can be implemented on the bases and in centerfield giving him superb coverage area. The reads off of the bat still need work but in the short term his speed can make up for any mistakes, closely resembling Jarrod Dyson’s early days. Unlike Dyson, he doesn’t have a plus arm but it’s not a negative as much as it’s an average tool making the entire defensive package plus in a prime defensive position.
Maikel Franco is one of 30 players looking for a comeback season, writes Bill Baer at NBC Sports.
Franco showed flashes of greatness in Phillies, occasionally going on a tear where he carried the team with his bat. Consistency was his issue. Over six years in Philadelphia, Franco batted .249/.302/.431 and peaked at 25 home runs in 2016. Despite the juiced ball, Franco posted a .705 OPS with 17 home runs last year. The Royals are hoping a change of scenery helps him turn things around.
Jordan Foote at Kings of Kauffman projects the Opening Day starting lineup.
Ken Rosenthal (subscription required) writes about the things MLB will have to re-work with the union, like service time, incentives, arbitration, and vesting options.
MLB is considering skipping the draft and international signing period this year.
How much do playoffs odds change in a shorter season?
Baseball could look for creative solutions to deal with a bizarre situation.
Giancarlo Stanton expects to be ready for the season.
Tigers prospect and Kansas City-area native Joey Wentz has Tommy John surgery.
The Athletics have reached out to a coronavirus patient to throw out the first pitch on Opening Day.
Freddie Freeman and Jason Heyward make large contributions to coronavirus relief
Some ideas on how the NCAA could re-schedule the College World Series.
Why Brockmire is the dystopian baseball comedy we need right now.
When the Stanley Cup Finals were cancelled due to a pandemic.
The Italian soccer league Serie A is hoping to resume play on May 3.
An easy chart to show why coronavirus is worse than your average flu.
Playboy magazine seems to be shutting down for good.
The specs for PlayStation 5 are surprisingly different from Microsoft’s Xbox Series X.
Your song of the day is Stealers Wheel with Stuck in the Middle With You.