David Lesky at Inside the Crown wonders if there is another reason free agent hitters don’t want to come here.
I haven’t talked to anyone about this, so this is just me thinking out loud, but sometimes that’s what this spot is for. But I think the Royals hurt themselves (shocker) in two ways to be able to attract players to come play for them. I’ve written about the bad team tax and that’s very real, but I think more than that, I wonder a little bit with offensive players if the way they talk about Kauffman Stadium is a deterrent. All we hear from everyone is that the stadium is a graveyard fo hitters, but the reality is that it isn’t. It’s a graveyard for home runs. And even that isn’t exactly accurate.
By park factor, Kauffman Stadium ranked 11th in runs scored, fifth in hits, second in doubles and eighth in triples in 2022. That’s obviously out of 30 parks. It’s actually kind of a great place to hit. It’s just not a great place to hit home runs.
Kevin O’Brien at Royals Reporter reacts to the Mike Mayers signing.
A big issue for Mayers last year was that he didn’t use his cutter as effectively as he did in 2020 and 2021. After his cutter posted a usage rate of 24.2 percent in 2020 and 30.3 percent in 2021, according to Savant, it dropped to 8.3 percent in 2022. Granted, the pitch only generated a K rate of 4.5 percent in 2022, which was an 18 percent decrease from the previous year.
MLB Pipeline lists a breakout prospect for each team.
Royals: Tyler Gentry, OF (No. 8) Gentry showed decent skills in 2021, but knee injuries limited him to only 44 games at High-A. Much healthier in 2022, the former Alabama star was even more productive this summer as he led Royals farmhands in average (.326), slugging (.542), OPS (.965) and wRC+ (152) over 108 games at High-A and Double-A. Anything close to that level of hitting next year should get Gentry a chance to perform in KC.
Jordan Foote at Inside the Royals doesn’t want to see Mike Moustakas back in KC.
Mike Gillespie at Kings of Kauffman grades Bobby Witt Jr.’s season.
Arizona sends outfielder Daulton Varsho to Toronto for catcher Gabriel Moreno and outfielder Lourdes Gurriel Jr.
The Giants add free agent outfielder Michael Conforto and reliever Taylor Rogers.
The Phillies sign reliever Craig Kimbrel to a one-year, $10 million deal.
The Padres and Marlins have interest in Johnny Cueto.
Who are the most improved teams of the off-season?
What is the top gift item on each team’s wish list?
Eno Sarris at The Athletic looks at the best pitches of 2022.
NFL Sunday Ticket is leaving DirecTV for YouTube TV.
Hollywood is filled with “nepo babies” - kids of famous parents.
Your song of the day is Stevie Wonder with What Christmas Means to Me.