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Royals Rumblings - News for July 7, 2023

Sadly, the Royals snapped my 8-week Thursday unbeaten streak last night (they’re down 5-1 in the 7th when I put this in the queue so maybe they could come back)

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Kansas City Royals v Cleveland Guardians
Profit from his struggles! Learn how in today’s Rumblings! (Sort of)
Photo by Ron Schwane/Getty Images

Anne Rogers with literally the only Royals stories yesterday from what I dub an “official” Royals news outlet - i.e. someone paid to regularly write about the Royals.

She talked with the Royals about their draft plans:

This is Royals scouting director Danny Ontiveros’ second year running the Draft, after years of sitting next to current vice president of player personnel Lonnie Goldberg, who is still involved heavily in Draft operations. Ontiveros drafted Gavin Cross last year with the No. 9 overall pick out of Virginia Tech...

This year is a strong Draft class. Louisiana State teammates Paul Skeenes and Dylan Crews are projected to go in the top two. At No. 8, the Royals’ pick will depend a bit on who falls to them. But in mock drafts, Kansas City has been linked largely to college bats, like Virginia catcher Kyle Teel — the Royals have strong scouting presence in the Virginia area — shortstops Jacob Gonzalez (Mississippi) and Jacob Wilson (Grand Canyon) or third baseman Brayden Taylor (Texas Christian).

“Without giving away too much, I can tell you that I think the strength in this Draft, or at least the top half of the Draft, is probably going to be more bats,” Ontiveros said. “I think it’s pretty equal with college and high school position players. There are also some high school pitchers with really good upside.”

She also had an update on Royals injuries:

RHP Zack Greinke (right shoulder strain)

Expected return: Late July

Greinke, who exited his start on July 4 against the Twins with right shoulder discomfort, returned to Kansas City a day later on the IL to undergo further examination, which revealed a mild shoulder strain.

All signs indicated that the IL stint was more precautionary than anything for the 39-year-old, and because of the All-Star break, he’ll likely miss just one start. (Last updated: July 6)

Speaking of the Draft, we’ll slide this listicle in here. Eric Longenhagen at Fangraphs has his Mock Draft where he breaks players into tiers

7. Cincinnati Reds

Pick: Kyle Teel, C, Virginia

8. Kansas City Royals

Pick: Noble Meyer, RHP, Jesuit HS (OR)

9. Colorado Rockies

Pick: Rhett Lowder, RHP, Wake Forest

This is the area where the non-Skenes college arms should start to go. Teel and Lowder are in the mix at seven if the Reds can’t somehow buy a high school bat down to this pick like they did with Cam Collier last year. Similar to Oakland, the Reds have two more picks in the top 45 and the depth of the high school hitters in the draft arguably gives them incentive to take a slot college guy here and then multiple high-upside risks later on. But they took a ton of high schoolers last year and then punted on a second rounder (Justin Boyd) to fit everyone into their pool, so I consider them a better bet to get creative here than Oakland.

Noble Meyer’s range seems to be between here and Miami. The Royals have taken prep arms this high before. Texas high school catcher Blake Mitchell and Illinois high school outfielder Dillon Head have also been mentioned with them, though the Head interest may be at their next pick. Teams put Colorado with college arms. Lowder is here in this scenario, though GM Bill Schmidt was also seen at late Chase Dollander and Hurston Waldrep starts (and in to see high school infielder Colin Houck). Buzz more recent to mock publication indicates Dollander might be slipping, so if not Lowder, I’d put Waldrep here.

Jonathan Mayo at MLB also has an updated mock draft.

8. Royals: Noble Meyer, RHP, Jesuit HS, Portland, Ore. (No. 8)The Royals have definite interest in Meyer, the best high school arm in the class, and Mitchell’s name gets mentioned here in what would likely be a below-slot deal. From the college ranks, there’s some thought that Teel, Wilson and Dollander could be in play. High school shortstop Arjun Nimmala could be a fit here.

A high school arm? Yuck.

KCUR, KC’s NPR station, has been trying to cover the Royals more lately. For instance, they had the story about the Urban Youth Academy and the labor negotiations. This week’s story talks about attendance and compares the Royals to their cross-state rivals (and the rest of baseball):

The Cardinals rank second in attendance to this point, averaging more than 41,000. They trail the Los Angeles Dodgers, who have averaged a gargantuan 48,000 fans this season so far.

The Royals have drawn the third-worst average attendance so far this season to Kauffman Stadium. Through 40 home games, the Royals averaged just over 16,000 fans per game. The only teams the club has outdrawn are the Miami Marlins, who historically have poor attendance, and the Oakland A’s, who are in the midst of a fan boycott amid a planned move to Las Vegas.

Off to the blogosphere.

David Lesky finds hope in Alec Marsh:

But in a season where you’re looking for something you can dream on, the stuff we saw from him is something you can dream on. He found himself on the swing and miss leaderboard on Baseball Savant. That’s fun. The 15 total whiffs were tied for the second-most in a game by a Royals pitcher this season. It’s sort of put up or shut up time for Marsh, who is now 25 even though he only has about 250 professional innings under his belt. He needed to get to the big leagues and show something. Is he a starter long-term? Maybe! It’s nice to have something to hope about.

Darin Watson at U.L.’s Toothpick writes about Gaylord Perry’s time with the Royals:

As you probably know, the only Royals cap on a Hall of Fame plaque is found on George Brett’s. Perhaps in a few years Zack Greinke, Carlos Beltran, or maybe even Salvador Perez will join him. But the Royals have employed a few eventual Hall of Famers over the years, mostly in management positions (two of the team’s first three skippers, Joe Gordon and Bob Lemon, would be inducted for their playing exploits; general manager John Schuerholz was inducted mostly for his work in Atlanta, with his part in building the 1970s-80s Royals a strong secondary consideration).

Three players have finished up Cooperstown-worthy careers in Royal blue after building up their credentials elsewhere: Orlando Cepeda joined the team in late 1974 as a free agent but hit just .215/.282/.290 in the last 117 plate appearances of his career. A few months later, the Royals signed Harmon Killebrew, who had just been released by the Twins but wanted to keep playing. I don’t think anybody thought about the “three true outcomes” then, but Killebrew struck out 70 times, walked 54, and hit 14 home runs for the Royals in 369 plate appearances, meaning over half of his PAs ended without a ball in play. But he only hit .209 on balls in play, resulting in a .199 average overall in his final season.

The third one was a pitcher, signed by the Royals 40 years ago this week. After a decade-plus with the San Francisco Giants and six seasons split between Cleveland and Texas, Gaylord Perry was bouncing around a bit at the end of his career. He had gone from Texas to San Diego, where he became the first pitcher to win the Cy Young Award in both leagues, back to Texas, then to the Yankees, Braves, and Mariners. He had picked up his 300th win as a Mariner in early 1982 and was still mostly effective that season, going 10-12 with a 4.40 ERA, which might not sound great but was good for a 97 ERA+, meaning he was slightly below league average. For a pitcher on a bad team in a hitters’ park, not terrible.

Blog Roundup:

Lastly, I feel like this gets its out spot and segues us into the next section. KC Kingdom, another Fansided site for the Royals, essentially went dark towards of the end of last season. However, every so often, someone puts up an article that’s transparently an ad to get you to sign up for a gambling site. I couldn’t help but chuckle at yesterday’s: How Royals Fans Can Profit From Jordan Lyles’ Struggles

How about another look behind the scenes?

Remember back in January (of course, nobody does) when I did an OT on “what it’s like to write a Rumblings”. This time I’ll give a little peek under the covers of what it’s like to be on the Masthead. No, not in the way that like Max or Matt or Jeremy do - that would require like real work and stuff. I just mean the stuff that comes into my inbox because I have an email address that advertisers scrape off the masthead.

Spoiler: I have an email account that I use specifically for Royals Review.

Disclaimer: This is a bit fictionalized because I want to protect the innocent and not so innocent. Oh, and to not get us sued. I did leave some of the bad grammar in for humorous effect, but, in those cases, the other wording has been changed. This is for bad comedy and even worse educational purposes only.

I subscribe to a number of Royals blogs and newsletters so my Royals Review folder looks like this:

David Lesky from Inside the Crown

Craig Brown at Into The Fountains

David Lesky from Inside the Crown

Craig Brown at Into The Fountains

David Lesky from Inside the Crown

WordPress: Buy something, will ya?

David Lesky from Inside the Crown

Craig Brown at Into The Fountains

David Lesky from Inside the Crown

Google: We noticed a new sign-in to your Google Account on a new device.

David Lesky from Inside the Crown

Check out the notifications you have on Twitter!

David Lesky from Inside the Crown

Craig Brown at Into The Fountains - SOS from Craig: I can’t keep up with Lesky! This team is killing me

David Lesky from Inside the Crown - I AM VICTORIOUS!

Beyond that, you get a surprisingly high amount of paid content offers. What I mean by that is we get cold call emails that say they’d love to “guest post” on RR. I believe this translates to “we want to post an ad on your platform, disguised as a news or analysis article”. It usually looks pretty spammy, the English isn’t great, and it’s the type of thing where you wonder just how legitimate the site is that they want to link back to.

Here’s a sampling of that:

what is guest post price on this site (

The link will be related to sports betting/casino sites.

If you have more sites to offer please give prices.

I can pay you $5 per post are you agree.

I particularly like when this is at the top of my email message. It lends a real air of authenticity to the proceedings:

Be careful with this message. The sender hasn’t authenticated this message so Gmail can’t verify that it actually came from them.

And my favorite:

Note : Article must not be any marked as sponsored or advertise and we can only pay paypal.

Those are, by far, the most common thing I get that isn’t from David, Craig, Gmail, Twitter, or WordPress.

I also occasionally get someone who is doing market research about an article I linked to or does PR for a person I linked to. Those usually look something like “Thank you for talking about (subject blah) in one of your posts. Could you provide us with your viewership stats for our client so we know the reach of our fluff piece?”

I’ve even had a couple where it was something with a similarly named product. After linking to an article about, say, Royals pitcher Jack Daniels, I got an email that basically said “We saw your article about Jack Daniels, link to us and promote our alcohol”. It didn’t seem to matter that it was about about the pitcher not the whiskey. The Royals may drive people to drinking, but Jack Daniels never played for them. Hm... I know he’s dead, but that .535 OPS at a corner outfield spot is awfully tempting.

A couple of times a year, I get offered a book to review. Honestly, this is something I feel I should take advantage of. However, I never learned to read anything beyond children’s books so they’re out of luck.

Similarly, bobbleheads. I swear - that industry is larger than it has any business being. A couple of different companies hit me up a couple of times a year whenever they’re releasing a Royals or even Kansas City-adjacent bobblehead. Honestly, I don’t mind the emails and some are quite cool, but bobbleheads aren’t my jam. Also, I don’t feel right basically promoting a product as a writer for Royals Review. I mean, I guess when I write about anything from roller coasters to decades old cartoons to Asian baseball, I’m technically promoting something. But it seems a bit more naked and transparent if I’m just writing an article that’s basically “buy this product” as opposed to something I’m passionate about.

I occasionally get someone wanting to “hire me away” and do content creation for them. Usually with the vague promise of a big payday but nothing substantive in writing and, when I Google them, I find they’re backed by $50K in venture capital. Jokes on them. I work for Pop-Tarts.

Finally, here is a reward for everyone that has emailed me over the past 3 years (ok, aside from the personal ones - that are great and I try to respond to those): 1 story that has made it through the filter and is now featured on Royals Review’s Friday Rumblings. Dozens of people will see it! Dozens, I tell you!

In the email, they said “If you think this guide could resonate with your audience, feel free to share at your leisure.” While it’s not really timely, compared to when they sent the email, it did say “at [my] leisure”. So, today, I present this infographic link to you: “Comparing Hot Dog and Beer Prices at Baseball Parks”.

Let’s revisit the SNES and SimCity.

Originally I talked about it back in 2017.

Then we revisited it in 2021 right before I reached Megalopolis for the first time (yay!)

This time, it’s the Capital Theme (50K to 100K people):