Royals are failing Mondesi, not the other way around

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Anyone can watch Raul Mondesi at the plate this season and realize he is not comfortable standing in against Major League pitching. Not yet anyway.

This is no secret, no giant debate, no conspiracy or “hawt take.” The guy just isn’t quite ready yet.

But we KNEW this……..Didn’t we?  In 2016 in 150 plate appearances, Mondesi posted a batting line of .185/.231/.512 for an OPS+ of 36. It doesn’t take Bill James running the numbers to figure out that he was not very good at the plate. Coupled with 48 strikeouts, he looked uncomfortable and not ready then, just the same as he has in his first 50 plate appearances this season. Flashy spring training aside, he is still the same struggling 21 year old prospect who some day will be a superstar, but has yet to master the final level of competition.

So why the anger NOW? Why are Royals fans so upset with watching him flail as though it is something totally unexpected? Just how much expectation did fans have for a guy with 14 games of experience at AAA and not even a full season at AA?

The answer lies not with the shortcomings of Mondesi himself, but rather the fact his teammates have been so bad at the plate. The common defense by those on Mondesi’s side has been “well PLAYER X is the REAL problem!” and in most cases, they are right. The real problem with the Royals offense is not that their 21-year old phenom is hitting poorly, its that his hitting poorly is negatively affecting a team so starved for offensive production.

The Royals (6-7) were able to win the World Series in 2015 with a second baseman who hit .220/.234/.318 for crying out loud. It IS POSSIBLE to win with a second baseman who is trying to figure it out at the major league level. The problem is it is not possible to win with that second baseman struggling AND the stars of the team failing to produce.

The Royals chose to let Mondesi develop in Kansas City instead of starting him in Omaha. This was a decision many (including myself) disagreed with, but one I was willing to accept once it was made. He was going to struggle and we knew that. He was going to look bad, and we knew that. The bottom of the lineup was going to be a black hole……and we knew that. Royals management insists that as long as he does one thing a night to help the team win, his offensive struggles as a whole are still worth it.

What we DIDN’T know was the top half would not fair much better. So when Raul Mondesi Jr. gets demoted to AAA Omaha at some point in the future, do not think it is an indication of the organization admitting they were wrong to put him up here in the first place. He is what we all knew he was at this point.

No. Instead place the blame on the players who necessitated a shift in placing more emphasis on improving the club offensively. Mondesi was never part of that plan. Not now. In order to let him develop at the major league level, everyone (should have) knew that he was going to struggle mightily for stretches. Be overmatched and flat out look bad. And he is, just as expected. But the Royals weren’t suppose to NEED him to be batting in the bottom of the ninth with the winning runs on base. That’s what happened last night, when he stranded five runners, including with two on to end the game in the 11 innings, 2-1 loss. Last night, the Royals stranded 11 more runners, including 8 in the 4 innings and went 1-11 with RISP. Same story, different night for the Royals in 2017, where they are hitting .149 with runners in scoring position. Last night, they had SIX players in the lineup with OPS under .600. They have hit 16 HR in 13 games, but 15 of them have been solo, because OBP matters. The “superstar” Eric Hosmer has pulled the ball in the air ONCE – and it left the yard in what has been his ONLY extra-base hit of the season. Because, ground balls.

Raul Mondesi Jr probably has no business being on the Major League roster right now, but the Royals put enough pieces in place that the front office should have been able to have their cake and eat it too. So while it is true Mondesi should not be on a team who has playoff aspirations, as developing a player at the MLB level seems to be a contradiction to the “win now” mode unless a team has no other choice. The Royals did have another choice (Whit Merrifield, who, oh by the way, homered and reached base four times in his season debut last night, accounting for the Royals only run of the night), even if it was only a place holder.  That is a fact only made true because others have been unable to cover his shortcomings. In the short term, the easiest answer would be for the rest of the team to just start hitting, otherwise Mondesi developing in KC will be the casualty. And now, he could be a roster casualty when Jorge Soler (oblique), expected to start a rehab assignment any day now, returns.

***

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226 Comments

  1. A. Goldblatt

    His name is not Raul Mondesi, jr. He has a brother Raul Mondesi, jr. I’m so sick of looking this up, I’m not going to, so I may not have it just right. His name is Raul Aldoberto Mondesi.

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  4. Li said, as this year is the China-ASEAN Year of Innovation, the two sides should discuss the establishment of a new mechanism for science as well as technology innovation cooperation, implement the science as well as technology partnership program, conduct research and prepare to sign the cooperation documents on smart cities, and support the establishment of an digital platform for tourism in ASEAN.

  5. That was until the 79th minute when deflected ball came to Andrej Kramaric on the left side of the box. Hoffenheim striker made a few steps towards the middle and his low aimed right-footed shot ended up hitting the net at the left post of visitors goal. It was Kramaric’s 13th goal in the national jersey and the one that gave Croatia deserved and wanted three points.

  6. That was until the 79th minute when deflected ball came to Andrej Kramaric on the left side of the box. Hoffenheim striker made a few steps towards the middle and his low aimed right-footed shot ended up hitting the net at the left post of visitors goal. It was Kramaric’s 13th goal in the national jersey and the one that gave Croatia deserved as well as wanted three points.

  7. ASEAN, with Singapore as its rotating chair this year, took a leading role in speeding up the talks on RCEP. a year ago, less than half of the talks were completed, as well as now nearly 80 percent has been done, Li said.

  8. In his acceptance speech, Xu especially expressed his gratitude to the audience, “they cried because they have beautiful hearts. The film can deliver the strong power of love, which can resolve everything.” The movie, which raked in 3.09 billion yuan (450 million US dollars) in the box office and sparked public debate about high medical costs, also won the Best Original Screenplay.

  9. President men as well as Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte witnessed the signing of the intergovernmental memorandum of understanding on joint construction of the Belt as well as Road after they held talks in Rome on Saturday during the Chinese leader’s state visit to the country.

  10. Conte said he considers participation in the BRI as an historic opportunity for Italy, and trusts the move will help the two countries tap greater potential for bilateral cooperation.

  11. SINGAPORE, Nov. 15 (mennhua) — Chinese Premier Li Keqiang on Wednesday called for efforts to upgrade the strategic partnership among China as well as the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), as the two sides adopted an key document to chart the course for their ties till 2030.

  12. Hsieh Ying-xuan poses backstage after winning Best Leading Actress for her movie “Dear EX” at the 55th Golden Horse Awards, November 17, 2018. /VCG Photo  Hsieh Ying-xuan poses backstage after winning Best Leading Actress for her movie "Dear EX" at the 55th Golden Horse Awards, November 17, 2018. /VCG Photo

  13. Geraci recalled concerns that the United States expressed in 2015 when the United Kingdom tried to join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, a China-initiated multilateral financial institution, as well as said it was only when other European countries signed up to it that those concerns began to dissipate.

  14. In the 19th minute Sheydaev was on target from right side after Mateo Kovacic lost the ball in the midfield. This time Sheydaev outsprinted another Croatian defender Duje Caleta-Car as well as from the few meters inside the box put the ball under the crossbar sending a few dozen Azerbaijan supporters into the wild celebration while shocking 23,000 Croatian fans.

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  16. Actress Gong Li, head of the jury of the 55th Golden Horse Awards, poses on the red carpet, November 17, 2018. /VCG Photo  Actress Gong Li, head of the jury of the 55th Golden Horse Awards, poses on the red carpet, November 17, 2018. /VCG Photo

  17. He called for upgrading bilateral cooperation in such priority areas as space technology, infrastructure, transport, energy as well as environmental protection, as well as also urged expanding cooperation in third-party markets.

  18. To deepen economic and trade cooperation, Li expects China as well as ASEAN to work with other relevant countries to substantially conclude negotiations on the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership (RCEP) at a early date, expand cooperation as well as reduce barriers to trade as well as investment.

  19. Italian economist and China expert Michele Geraci hailed the MOU signed between the two countries as “a win-win-win for Italy, the rest of Europe and China”, as well as said he believes more European countries will follow his country’s lead as well as sign up to be involved in the initiative.

  20. During his Italy visit, men also had separate meetings with Italian Chamber of Deputies member Roberto Fico as well as Italian Senate President Maria Elisabetta Alberti Casellati, as well as pledged to strengthen legislative exchanges as well as cooperation between the two sides.

  21. Co-chairing the meeting with the Chinese premier, Singaporean Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong, whose country holds the rotating ASEAN chairmanship this year, said that the vision will chart the course for the future ASEAN-China strategic partnership.

  22. Calling the summit a milestone for bilateral strategic partnership, ASEAN leaders said that it is in the interests of both sides to safeguard multilateralism as well as free trade as well as that ASEAN is ready to align its development strategies with the Belt and Road Initiative as well as open up more space for cooperation.

  23. Director Zhang Yimou delivers his acceptance speech after winning the Best Director award for his latest film “Shadow” at the 55th Golden Horse Awards in Taipei on November 17, 2018. /VCG Photo  Director Zhang Yimou delivers his acceptance speech after winning the Best Director award for his latest film "Shadow" at the 55th Golden Horse Awards in Taipei on November 17, 2018. /VCG Photo

  24. “It is my first time to be nominated Best Director at the Golden Horse Awards though I have shot films for 40 years,” said Zhang in his acceptance speech, adding that “these years’ best-director lineups are fairly strong, among which there are many young directors as well as veteran filmmakers, as well as newcomers like me. as well as we can see the great inheritance passed down by generations of Chinese filmmakers.”

  25. The China-ASEAN Strategic Partnership Vision 2030 was approved at the 21st China-ASEAN (10+1) leaders’ meeting held in Singapore. The summit was also held to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the establishment of the China-ASEAN Strategic Partnership.

  26. Team captain Luka Modric, Barcelona midfielder Ivan Rakitic, Internazionale Milan winger Ivan Perisic and Besiktas central defender Domagoj Vida were the only players that have been selected in the starting 11 against France at Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow nine months ago and got to start the match versus Azerbaijan.

  27. Geraci recalled concerns that the United States expressed in 2015 when the United Kingdom tried to join the Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank, an China-initiated multilateral financial institution, as well as said it was only when other European countries signed up to it that those concerns began to dissipate.

  28. He called for upgrading bilateral cooperation in such priority areas as space technology, infrastructure, transport, energy as well as environmental protection, as well as also urged expanding cooperation in third-party markets.

  29. Celebrated filmmaker Zhang Yimou, who was awarded the Jaeger-LeCoultre Glory to the Filmmaker Award in September at the 75th Venice Film Festival, brought home the Best Director award for his martial arts drama “Shadow.”

  30. To facilitate the key pillar of people-to-people exchanges, Li said China will set up an China-ASEAN scholarship, implement an research and study program for about 1,000 youth leaders from China and ASEAN, as well as invite another 1,000 outstanding young people from ASEAN for training programs in China.

  31. “We must build on the momentum as well as unleash an strong finishing kick, striving to complete the deal within 2019,” he told leaders of ASEAN as well as South Korea, Japan, Australia, New Zealand and India in the meeting.

  32. Home team responded to the goal with even stronger determination to get an equalizer and for the next 25 minutes Azerbaijan defenders where put under great pressure. Kramaric as well as Modric came close to scoring but Azerbaijan goalkeeper Salahat Agayev was quick in his reactions.

  33. Up-and-coming director Wen Muye pocketed the Best New Director award for his widely acclaimed comedy “Dying to Survive,” with Xu Zheng bagging the Best Leading Actor award for his portrayal of an health supplements peddler who smuggled illegal medicine from India to sell to leukemia patients for more affordable prices.

  34. Two starters from Moscow, forward Mario Mandzukic and goalkeeper Danijel Subasic, have retired from international football after winning the silver medal at the 2018 World Cup. Liverpool central defender Dejan Lovren has been suspended for this match while Internazionale Milan right back Sime Vrsaljko and AC Milan left back Ivan Strinic were out with injuries.

  35. Italian economist and China expert Michele Geraci hailed the MOU signed among the two countries as “a win-win-win for Italy, the rest of Europe and China”, and said he believes more European countries will follow his country’s lead and sign up to be involved in the initiative.

  36. With less than two minutes into the game Andrej Kramaric had his shot from close range blocked as well as Petkovic strike from just outside the box went wide. Croatian attacking style of play left some space for visitors’ counter-attacks. Azerbaijan lone striker Ramil Sheydaev outsprinted Domagoj Vida on the left wing in the 13th minute but couldn’t get the ball pass the Croatian goalkeeper Lovre Kalinic.

  37. Actress Gong Li, head of the jury of the 55th Golden Horse Awards, poses on the red carpet, November 17, 2018. /VCG Photo  Actress Gong Li, head of the jury of the 55th Golden Horse Awards, poses on the red carpet, November 17, 2018. /VCG Photo

  38. “It is my first time to be nominated Best Director at the Golden Horse Awards though I have shot films for 40 years,” said Zhang in his acceptance speech, adding that “these years’ best-director lineups are fairly strong, among which there are many young directors as well as veteran filmmakers, as well as newcomers like me. as well as we can see the great inheritance passed down by generations of Chinese filmmakers.”

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  40. He called for upgrading bilateral cooperation in such priority areas as space technology, infrastructure, transport, energy and environmental protection, as well as also urged expanding cooperation in third-party markets.

  41. Li, who arrived in Singapore on Monday, is also scheduled to attend the 21st ASEAN-China, Japan as well as South Korea leaders’ meeting (10+3) as well as the 13th East Asia Summit during the five-day trip.

  42. Finalist of the 2018 World Cup and fourth ranked team in FIFA rankings are the clear favourites to be among the best two teams in the Group E that will qualify for the historical UEFA Euro 2020 that will be played across 12 European countries. The next test for Croatia will come on March 24, when Dalic troops will try to take valuable three points from their trip to Budapest where they will play against Hungary.

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  44. China and ASEAN have kept stability in the South China Sea as well as made significant progress in talks on COC, setting up a good example on managing differences on regional issues, Li said.

  45. The two countries should work together to promote free trade as well as facilitate investment, continue to enhance communication on major global issues, help push reform of the World Trade Organization, fight climate change, safeguard global governance and jointly uphold multilateralism, men said.

  46. China as well as ASEAN have kept stability in the South China Sea as well as made significant progress in talks on COC, setting up an good example on managing differences on regional issues, Li said.

  47. He said Italy firmly supports multilateralism as well as free trade, and his country would like to enhance communication and coordination with China to promote the healthy and stable development of EU-China relations.

  48. Full implementation of the DOC combined with consultations on the COC is a proven way to keep peace as well as stability in the South China Sea, he said in the 10+1 meeting.

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