Alec Lewis provided a rundown of Kansas City’s “hitter-heavy” international draft class:
Wilson Betemit Jr., RHP, Dominican Republic
This name will ring a bell. Indeed, Betemit is the son of the former Royals (among other teams) infielder. Betemit Jr. was also a middle infielder growing up. As he aged and the Royals’ coordinator of their Dominican Academy, Victor Baez, saw Betemit’s arm, he suggested the Royals put him on the mound.
The Royals watched Betemit for a year, evaluating how he looked in games. They saw the potential of the arm and an understanding of how to pitch.
“There’s baseball blood there,” Francisco said.
In his newsletter, Craig Brown takes a look at the free agent lefty bats who are still on the market:
The top of the left-handed-hitting outfield free agent class (feels like we should have an acronym for this. But it’s probably just as exhausting to write LHBOFFA all the time.) is now one Jackie Bradley Jr., late of the Red Sox. And with that distinction comes great responsibility. At the start of the winter, FanGraphs projected two years and a contract between $18 and $20 million. Major League Trade Rumors had two years and $16 million. Had this been the case, these terms would’ve been right in the Royals’ wheelhouse. Now, they feel extremely low.
Again, take this with a grain of salt because estimating free agent contracts is not one of my strengths, but it seems like Bradley Jr. should be entertaining offers of at least three years and $45 million. As I’ve previously written, the Royals should be able to afford a contract like that; it just doesn’t seem to fit in with their current fiscal plan. The free agents they have signed this winter are for two years and under $10 million AAV. These are affordable deals that don’t handcuff the payroll in the future.
The Royals are checking out Spencer Patton:
Free-agent pitcher Spencer Patton recently threw a bullpen for teams, and scouts and team executives came away impressed. Among the teams with interest: Braves, Royals, Angels, Giants, Rays, Rangers.— Robert Murray (@ByRobertMurray) January 26, 2021
Patton was a 24th round Royals draftee, and made it as high as Triple-A Omaha in 2014. (Check out the mustache he sported throughout Omaha’s playoff run!)
The Phillies signed their star catcher J.T. Realmuto to a big contract, making him the highest-paid catcher in the game.
Infielder Marcus Semien is off the board, as the Blue Jays signed him to a 1-year deal.
Also signing yesterday was shortstop Freddy Galvis, who signed with Baltimore.
MLB will be setting up a pre-draft combine that is free of cost to any player invited.
Former Norfolk Tides manager Ron Johnson, who also managed for the Omaha Royals in 1998-99, died of complications from COVID-19.
Following the revelation that zero players from the latest class of eligible players would be inducted into the MLB Hall of Fame, Curt Schilling requested that his name be removed from consideration in 2022.
A rundown of the developments in the possible delay of Spring Training.
The village of West Jefferson, Ohio, hung up signs honoring Dodgers pitcher Caleb Ferguson, who is from there. Small town folks: who is the most famous person from your town?
If you saw a horse with a phone number on its coat, would you call it? This person did!
Ok. I went for a walk and saw a horse with a mobile phone number written on it. So I called the number: pic.twitter.com/Q8RdgqYaYJ— Stuart Laws (@thisstuartlaws) January 25, 2021
A man started posting “rubbish” portraits of pets as a joke, but people keep buying them. Those sales have raised £50,000 for a charity that helps unhoused people.
[CW domestic violence] A heads-up ticket booker for Disney recognized a call for help disguised as a call for Disney tickets.
Superstar gamer Ninja gave an interview wherein he advised parents to eavesdrop on their kids while they game, to catch them if they’re contributing to any hateful speech that often flies around during streams.
You can listen to some audiobooks on Spotify now.
Instead of a Reddit question, I’m going to pass along a question from MSNBC host Chris Hayes: “Alright, parent check-in: how are your kids holding up right now, emotionally, scholastically, socially?”
SOTD: Brand New - The Quiet Things That No One Ever Knows.