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Royals Rumblings - News for December 6, 2022

Let’s make a deal!

MLB: Winter Meetings Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports

Anthony Castrovince talks to J.J. Picollo about free agency.

“You know the dollars are going to be challenging,” executive vice president and general manager J.J. Picollo said on Monday. “We tend to be more of a later-market team. So, I think that’s going to be more of how this pans out.

“But we are engaged with a couple of guys right now that we think are just good fits for the team. And if that doesn’t work out, then definitely we will be more in the later market.”

He also notes John Mabry is no longer on the coaching staff and adds some changes in the front office.

Paul Gibson will be the senior director of pitching performance, spending more time with the big league club than he did in the past. Mitch Stetter will be the director of pitching performance, covering day-to-day coordinator duties monitoring Minor League rotations and pitch counts while also staying involved in strategic elements.

Nate Adcock, who scouted for the Royals last year, will be the assistant director of pitching performance, focused on the Spring Training planning, then the Draft and player development. And Justin Friedman will be the assistant manager of pitching performance, focused on pitch design.

Lynn Worthy writes about what the Royals might be looking to accomplish at the Winter Meetings.

Starting pitching candidates should be the Royals’ biggest area of need this winter along with bullpen depth and a veteran hitter.

Of course, proven starting pitching almost always comes at significant cost. Meanwhile, Picollo has indicated that the club isn’t likely to spend big this winter.

The Royals weren’t ever going to be realistic bidders for elite starters such as Jacob deGrom, Justin Verlander or Carlos Rodon.

But non-top tier starters have also begun to come off the board in recent weeks, and some of those price tags have also been relatively steep. Contracts signed by Zach Eflin (three years, $40 million), Mike Clevinger (one year, $12 million) and Matthew Boyd (one year, $10 million) indicate the high demand for starters, even those not among the elite level.

Picollo was on MLB Network Radio.

Kevin O’Brien at Royals Reporter reacts to interest in MJ Melendez.

It could signal that Melendez could be due for an even bigger breakout in his sophomore season, especially with the shift going away (somewhat) in 2023. Melendez had the sixth-highest pull rate (44.9 percent) of Royals hitters with 100 or more plate appearances a season ago, and his BABIP (.258) was the third-lowest of that group as well.

It may seem easy for the Royals to trade away Melendez for an established starting pitcher, especially since he struggled so immensely defensively behind the plate in his rookie campaign.

The signs are hinting though that Melendez could be an even bigger force offensively for the Royals next season.

Mike Gillespie at Kings of Kauffman wonders if the Royals will be active this week.

Diamond Sports, which runs Bally Sports Kansas City, votes to block parent Sinclair Broadcasting from day-to-day operations.

The Phillies sign shortstop Trea Turner to an 11-year, $300 million deal

Justin Verlander is heading to the Mets on a two-year, $86 million deal.

Clayton Kershaw returns to the Dodgers on a one-year, $20 million deal.

The Twins will consider trading batting champ Luis Arraez to get frontline pitching.

General Manager Brian Cashman signs a four-year extension with the Yankees.

Pitcher Rick Porcello announces his retirement.

The Rays have a development partner and release new stadium renderings.

Where labor issues stand one year after a work stoppage.

How should teams set their outfield defense?

Soccer star Cristiano Ronaldo will sign with a Saudi team for $200 million per season.

Who could sign Baker Mayfield after he was let go by the Panthers?

We can now use cells from dead people to create new life, but should we?

How the new Wordle editor is ruining Wordle.

The best TV shows of 2022.

Your song of the day is Swing Out Sister with Am I The Same Girl.