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Royals Rumblings - News for January 30, 2024

Can Hunter Renfroe return to form in Kansas City?

Tampa Bay Rays v Los Angeles Angels - Game Two Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images

David Lesky at Inside the Crown questions the Adam Frazier signing.

For $2 million in 2024, it’s easy to see him as a backup. That’s what they gave Garrett Hampson at least, and he’s clearly seen as a depth piece and not someone to play every day. But the fit just doesn’t make sense to me. And it’s mostly because they already have a left-handed hitting second baseman who is inexpensive, can’t really play anywhere else and has had his offensive issues. Only the difference is that the one they have has lit up the minor leagues, has way more power and is probably a considerably better defender at this point in their careers. So what’s the deal with signing Frazier when Massey already exists and is sitting right in front of them?

Matthew Robison at Farm to Fountain profiles Hunter Renfroe.

On to the hitting side, I think Renfroe can be an x-factor for the Royals offense. Combined with the young talent surrounding him, he can be lethal. Everyone in their career has a downtime or season, and everything just kind of doesn’t work out. I believe that was the case for Renfroe in 2023. He could get back to his potential of 25 homers and 25 doubles, and with the Royal speedsters on the basepaths, he could even have more RBI opportunities in 2024.

Baseball America writes about who in each organization might be the top prospect in 2025.

Kansas City’s system is muddled but help is on the way. The Royals hold the No. 6 overall pick in the 2024 draft and the player they choose there is likely to land atop their Top 30 in a year. Mitchell, their current No. 1 overall prospect, might also retain his crown with a strong first full year as a professional. Other candidates include Mozzicato, a lefthander who carved at Low-A before an injury but hit a speed bump at High-A; Ramirez, an 18-year-old backstop who dominated the DSL in his first pro stint and looked excellent at stateside instructional league and Ricardo, the team’s top signee from the international period that opened on Jan. 15, 2024.

Jacob Milham at Kings of Kauffman writes that Ben Kudrna is an underrated prospect.

The budget proposed by Missouri Governor Mike Parson does not include money for the Royals and Chiefs.

The Cubs sign former Royals pitcher Richard Lovelady to a minor league deal.

The Mariners acquire Jorge Polanco from the Twins in a five-player trade.

The Angels sign outfielder Aaron Hicks to a one-year deal.

Who are the top unsigned corner outfielders?

The Rangers are considering free agent first baseman Brandon Belt.

Giants pitcher Ross Stripling is testing out a new “deathball.”

Is home field advantage less of an advantage in baseball?

Sarah Langs looks at the players that could make history this season.

Have the Reds done enough to contend?

Longtime manager Jimy Williams dies at age 80.

Andy Reid says Kadarius Toney will be back at practice despite his rant on social media.

A look at the $2 billion basketball arena being built for the Clippers.

Trash collecting in the oceans may be hurting more than it’s helping.

Why are psychedelics outperforming trauma researchers’ expectations?

Nielsen’s releases streaming data for 2023 and people are tuning in to watch Suits and Ted Lasso.

Your song of the day is A Tribe Called Quest with Check the Rhime.