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Royals Rumblings - News for July 12, 2022

The streak is over. Long live the streak.

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Baltimore Orioles v Kansas City Royals Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images

Royals Rumblings - News for July 12, 2022

Bobby Witt Jr. had a huge doubleheader last night becoming the first MLB player since 1920 to have 6+ hits, 3+ RBI, and 3+ stolen bases in a doubleheader sweep.

Brad Keller reflected on his solid start in game one.

“I feel like whenever you’ve got a good feel for your fastball, you can just go after guys,” Keller said. “Especially on a hot day like today, I didn’t want the defense standing out there too long. I just tried to go after guys. Honestly, strike one was really important today. I felt like I did a pretty good job with that and just staying ahead in counts the whole time.”

Vinnie Pasquantino smashed his first Kauffman Stadium home run.

“I was just happy this one went over the fence and stayed over the fence,” Pasquantino said. “For a second there, I thought the ball might go off the wall … so I kind of sprint for about half a second, and then I realized it’s going to go.”

Whit Merrifield will be in a boot for a week or two with a toe injury, ending his consecutive games played streak.

“It’s unfortunate it had to happen this way,” Merrifield said before Monday’s doubleheader against the Tigers. “I’ve been — lucky is a good word for it in some instances, but I’ve put myself in a good position to play every day physically, mentality-wise. I showed up ready to play no matter the circumstance, whether I was going good or bad. It’s been a long run. I’m proud of it.”

J.J. Picollo talks about the newest acquisitions, outfielder Drew Waters, pitcher Andrew Hoffmann, and third baseman C.J. Alexander.

Nathan Han has facts to know about Waters.

Alec Lewis gets the scoop from scouts.

On a macro level, a couple of scouts wondered what the deal says about how the Royals view their timeline toward contention. Another considered the move might speak to the options in the upcoming draft. As it relates to Waters, whose prospect status began to swell in 2017 when the Braves selected him in the second round, scouts ranged in their evaluations.

One in particular, who has observed Waters’ plus range and arm in the past couple of years, had questions about Waters’ inconsistency at the plate. Another, who saw him play last season, said, “I’m a Drew Waters fan.” One described his potential this way: “He has a chance to be a solid everyday center fielder.”

Kevin O’Brien at Royals Reporter writes that Royals hitter development will be key with Waters.

Craig Brown at Into the Fountains looks at the hitting progress since the change of hitting coaches.

Is rejuvenated a strong enough word? Mercy. This is a different team. Almost 40 points added to the on-base percentage, 70 points of improvement in slugging…They were 23 percent worse than the league average offense and now they’re five percent better? These three hitting wise men are working some kind of offensive miracle.

David Lesky at Inside the Crown considers some trade chatter.

The consensus is that Benintendi is going to bring back a nice chunk, maybe more than a traditional rental because of the interest in him. We’ve heard about the most interest from the Yankees, Braves and Blue Jays, but there’s a pretty strong argument to be made that he also fits with the Red Sox, Rays, White Sox, Twins, Guardians, Mariners, Phillies, Brewers, Cardinals and Padres. That’s nearly half of the league. My question that I really don’t know the answer to is if it’s smart to pair him with someone like Barlow to get a bigger return.

Speaking of trade chatter.

ESPN looks back at the greatest tools drafted by each team and for the Royals, it’s Bo.

Royals scout Kenny Gonzales gave Jackson 80 grades for his power and speed and 70 for his arm, so pick your tool. Nobody believed Jackson would spurn the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, who had picked him first overall in the NFL draft, but Gonzalez knew Jackson was reluctant to sign with the Bucs and willing to play baseball.

The Royals signed him to a three-year, $1 million deal and despite limited baseball experience, he was in the majors that September. His first career home run was a 475-foot blast — still the longest homer ever hit at Kauffman Stadium.

Alex Duvall at Royals Farm Report writes that Royals hitting prospects are flourishing in the minors.

Preston Farr at Kings of Kauffman proposes some potential Scott Barlow deals.

Mets slugger Peter Alonso will be in the Home Run Derby as will Albert Pujols.

MLB writers discuss how the trade market looks with a few weeks to go before the deadline.

Pirates outfielder Bryan Reynolds lands on the Injured List.

Who were the biggest All-Star snubs?

Tampa Bay shortstop Wander Franco needs surgery on his hand and will miss 5-8 weeks.

A look at the potential draftees with famous families.

Four Phillies starters are unavailable for a series in Toronto for not being vaccinated.

David Laurila at Fangraphs asks players who was their most influential teammate?

Dodgers concession workers threaten to strike ahead of the All-Star Game.

Russian bettors fell for a fake Indian cricket league that didn’t exist.

Fantasy football analyst Matthew Berry is leaving ESPN.

How Istanbul became the global capital for hair transplants.

TikTok is full of shady secret advertisements.

NASA releases the first full color images from the James Webb Space Telescope.

Your song of the day is Fugees with Killing Me Softly With His Song.