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Royals Rumblings - News for February 1, 2022

It’s Bobby Witt, Jr. season.

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Kansas City Royals v Seattle Mariners Photo by Ralph Freso/Getty Images

Royals Rumblings - News for February 1, 2022

Keith Law of The Athletic ranks his top 100 prospects, with four Royals making the list and Bobby Witt, Jr. ranked #2.

This was as close a call between the top two prospects that I can recall having, probably since my No. 1 and 2 were named Mike and Bryce before the 2011 season — and having Witt second here is no slight to him....

It’s possible the Royals would move Witt Jr. to accommodate another shortstop, but I see his future on defense as similar to the career so far of Carlos Correa. The majority of scouts thought Correa would outgrow the position, but he has stayed lean and been an above-average defender throughout his major-league tenure. The one knock here, and it is a small one, is that Witt has some swing and miss in his game, with a tendency to get too long and overrotate just a little — something he may very well improve once he has a few hundred at bats in the majors under his belt. Right now, it’s the only separator between him and Rutschman. They both belong in the majors now and both have MVP-level upside.

Alex Duvall at Royals Farm Report has his top 50 Royals prospect rankings.

26 of the players I mentioned on that list were either drafted by the Royals or signed as international free agents. This organization has done a great job of building talent in the minor leagues that is going to allow them to keep some of them through their rookie contracts AND spend money to fill holes on the roster (CF) in free agency when they feel like it’s the right time. This doesn’t even include guys like Maikel Garcia who are legitimate prospects on the 40-man roster and may just not have a spot on the big league roster for a bit. This system is loaded and it’s about to pay huge dividends for this team.

Eric Treuden at Call to the Pen talks to former Royals pitcher Trevor Oaks.

I was in Colorado Springs and we had just gotten back to the hotel from a game. Our manager, Brian Poldberg, gave me a call and let me know I was headed to Kansas City for a doubleheader. I would be the 26th man and start the second game. I called my family right away and told them the news. I actually kind of got the call earlier on in the year. I was still at Spring Training and the season had just started. I think we opened up in Detroit and there was a high probability a game would get snowed out. I was told if it did, I would be flying out that night for the doubleheader the next day. Unfortunately, that never happened, so when I got the actual call, a lot of that shock and initial surprise wasn’t as strong.

The Northwest Arkansas Naturals release their promotional schedule.

Former Royals pitcher Aaron Brooks signs a minor league deal with the Cardinals.

Evan Dreilich at The Athletic writes that owners and players are still far apart in labor talks.

Jay Jaffe at Fangraphs looks at the next five years of Hall of Fame elections.

What active outfielders are Hall of Fame candidates?

Why a WAR-based bonus pool may not work.

Shohei Ohtani will be on the cover of the video game MLB The Show 2022.

A terrific article on Masanori Murakami, the first Japanese player in Major League Baseball.

A vandalized Jackie Robinson marker will be displayed at Negro Leagues Baseball Museum.

A crowded AFC is the new normal for the Chiefs.

Barcelona set to sign Arsenal’s Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang.

Can science fiction wake us up to the climate change reality?

The New York Times buys Wordle for a seven-figure sum.

A Dungeons and Dragons TV show is in development.

Your song of the day is The Pharcyde with Runnin.