Kyle Zimmer can provide the boost the bullpen needs

ZIMMER

After the Royals fell to 2-5 with a dismal offensive performance in a 2-0 shutout on Monday – the Royals first Home Opener shutout since 1971, the Royals sent down a man who shouldn’t have even made the roster, Terrance Gore, to NW Arkansas after he made his only appearance of the season pinch-running for Salvador Perez in the ninth inning. Another roster move came down yesterday, with the struggling Matt Strahm sent to Triple-A Omaha. After his performance through the first week, his demotion should come as no surprise. He’s 0-2 with a 47.50 ERA and 7.50 WHIP so far in 2017 (1.1 IP in 3 appearances), after dominating hitters in 2016 to the tune of a 1.23 ERA, 1.09 WHIP in 22 innings last year. Command has been a major issue, as has twice as many walks this year. “I just need to stay on top of the ball,” Strahm said after Sunday’s loss, where he walked two in a row for a literal Astros walk-off in the 12th inning. “I see the problem, but I need to correct it.” Manager Ned Yost said [Read more...]

Just cancel the season

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It's a matter of minutes before the Royals will take on the Twins in the third game of the season-opening series. But, after losing the first two games by a combined score of 16-2, walking 18 batters, allowed two 6-run innings and registering just seven hits (.122 AVG), they might as well not even play today. Or the rest of the season. Just, shut it down. As the seasons first series comes to a close, we reflect back and observe the first two games offering up what seemed like closure. It is true that they signaled the beginning of the 2017 regular season, but they just as definitively ushered in the swan song of a dying era. With a crashing thud, the Royals managed to dash the hopes and dreams of fans and front office alike. With not one single aspect of the club operating as it should, (sans "Bury Me a Royal" Danny Duffy's performance) the players have begun their victory lap much as a retired player far past his prime waves to the crowd before his final game. While the legend is [Read more...]

Projecting the 2017 Kansas City Royals

MooreYost

Like every year during the Royals Golden Age other than 2015, Vegas and any other notable outlet, has projected the Royals to finish in third or fourth place in the AL Central and below .500. Despite that, let’s make no mistake about, the Royals are contenders in 2017. After the Royals traded Wade Davis, we wondered if the Window to Win was still open. Then, Yordano Ventura tragically died and something happened – its like the Royals decided it was time to go all in. They signed Brandon Moss and former Cubs pitchers Jason Hammel and Travis Wood. They’re going for it! All part of the original core, Eric Hosmer, Mike Mosutakas, Lorenzo Cain and Alcides Escobar could be gone after this year, but even if none of them return, the Royals are in much better shape in 2018 then we all anticipated at this time a year ago. But, for now, in their last year together, the Royals are primed to contend. How? Last year was a disaster for the Royals. Everything that could go wrong, did. But, despite [Read more...]

Are the Royals REALLY interested in Brett Lawrie?

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According to ESPN Analyst Jim Bowden, the Royals are one of a handful of teams to express interest in free agent second baseman Brett Lawrie. Royals fans most notably remember Lawrie from his brush with the team in 2015 when he slid hard into second base and took out Alcides Escobar. Yordano Ventura then retaliated the next day by drilling Lawrie with a fastball. Lawrie then went on to criticize the Royals players and fans alike following the incident, galvanizing him as a villain in the eyes of Kansas City forever. This is of particular note if for no other reason than the Royals have had more of a personal reason to dislike Brett Lawrie than of the typical "bad apple" types discussed as possibilities to fill holes in the past. Kansas City fans genuinely dislike the guy. Which is why this news seems particularly strange given that the Royals front office has seemingly been very keen on building a team around chemistry and clubhouse character. They have made it a point to make it [Read more...]

Predicting the Royals 25-man roster

MooreYost

It’s now March, but we're just four games into Spring Training and more than a month from Opening Day, but it’s not too early to start thinking about what the 25-man roster will look like. Like the year before it, and the year before that, most of the roster is already set. That’s what good teams do – they don’t have a lot of holes to fill. There’s always a chance that someone could Rey Fuentes themselves onto the roster. The last couple spots will be tough and good players will not make the team. Comes with the territory when you’re a contender. And make no mistake, the Royals are, despite Vegas handing them the second lowest win total in the AL Central (nothing new). After the Royals traded Wade Davis, we wondered if the Window to Win was still open. Then, Yordano Ventura tragically died and something happened – its like the Royals decided it was time to go all in. They signed Brandon Moss and former Cubs pitchers Jason Hammel and Travis Wood. They’re going for it! All part of the [Read more...]

Forever Royal: Remembering Yordano Ventura

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At first we were in shock. Then when we mourned. Together. That’s what this city does, and that’s what the Chiefs and Royals do for this city – it brings us together. It’s what makes Kansas City so special. It’s not some transient population who only cares about their teams if they’re winning. The teams actually matter to this city. And, we care. As Danny Duffy, who recently signed a 5-year, $65 million contract extension, once said, “We win as a city and we lose as a city.” We lost as a city, when Yordano Ventura tragically died in a car wreck in his native Dominican Republic, Jan. 22. He was just 25 years old. “He was so young and so talented,” GM Dayton Moore said. “He always brought a smile to everyone he interacted with. We loved Yordano. We loved his heart.” As many of you know, the details are still sketchy, at best. We know it was foggy. It was the time of morning when nothing good happens. According the reports, he was out “celebrating.” You can figure out what that [Read more...]

Dyson for Karns is a win for Royals, but he’ll be missed

KANSAS CITY, MO - OCTOBER 5:  PLAYER # of the Kansas City Royals ACTION during Game 3 against the Los Angeles Angels on Sunday, October 5, 2014 at Kauffman Stadium in Kansas City, Missouri. (Photo by Amy Stroth/MLB Photos via Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** PLAYER1;PLAYER2

Friday, the Royals traded outfielder and soon-to-be free agent Jarrod Dyson to Seattle for pitcher under team control through 2020 in Nathan Karns. So, what there’ not to love about the trade? I guess him not being in a Royals uniform any longer is about the only thing not to like about the trade. Dyson was nothing special. But the former 50th Round Draft Pick who spent 10 years in the Royals organization and the guy who brought “that what speed do” to Kansas City, meant a lot to the Royals. A fan favorite and one of the strongest locker room leaders, he hit .260/.325/.353 in seven seasons in Kansas City. The speedy left-hander who led the Royals in WAR in 2016 and is the fourth-most successful base stealer in over the last 50 years with an 85% success rate (however that rate is slowly declining – 81% in 2016 after 87% from 2010-2015 – as his legs are not getting any younger). Despite just 1,901 plate appearances over the last four years, he has the sixth-highest total BsR score from [Read more...]

Vegas has spoken: Royals face long odds to win it all in 2017

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After a disappointing 2016 campaign that saw the Royals finish a mediocre 81-81, fans in Kansas City have tempered hopes that 2017 might be the season that gets this team back on track. Much of the thinking is the Royals were simply out of gas after two straight seasons of reaching and eventually winning the World Series. With the goal having been achieved, it would be natural to find it hard to carry on the same motivation the following year, thus the simple explanation for the Royals decline. There were, of course, many more reasons than just that. Disappointing performances from many offensive players. A decline in the Royals other worldly bullpen and of course the inability to find a capable fifth starter. The question now of course is can the Royals over come these deficiencies in the upcoming year after losing even more pieces this offseason after the departures of Edinson Volquez, Wade Davis and Kendrys Morales? Can this core of players once again play at a level more on par [Read more...]

Royals Roundtable: Is the “window to win” still open?

MLB Photos: Kansas City Royals

We’ve heard over the last year or two that the Royals “window to win” is open through 2017, then it will suddenly close as most of the current core leaves and Dayton Moore tears it down, to build it back up, again. Awe, the life of small market baseball. But, after an 81-81 2016 – a year in which the Royals were unable to cash in on their highest payroll in franchise history, riddled with injury after injury, the Royals are in a tough spot. Despite losing Kendrys Morales and his 30 HR and 93 RBI, and Edinson Volquez, the salary is again at its peak. The Royals are facing salary restrictions/limitations – no chance to add anything major in free agency AND arbitration raises due to go along with several members of the core (Lorenzo Cain, Mike Moustakas, Wade Davis, Danny Duffy, Jarrod Dyson and Eric Hosmer), in addition to Jason Vargas, with expiring contracts, one has to wonder if the window to win actually closed in 2016? The Winter Meetings have came and went, and so has Wade [Read more...]

How the New CBA Affects the Royals – new QO Rules, International Cap

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It was announced late Wednesday that Major League Baseball and the Players Union have agreed on a new Collective Bargaining Agreement. Amid several rumors and speculations leading up to the final product, it remains mostly in tact from the previous CBA. Some changes of note include the increasing of the Luxury cap and a restructure in the penalties for going over the cap. Beginning in 2017, teams will begin paying luxury taxes on payrolls over $195 million. A number that certainly should not have any impact on the 2017 Royals. They have also placed a cap on the amount teams can spend on international spending at $6 million. ($5 million being reported by some sources). While the Royals have been active in the international market in the past, they have never been lavish spenders, so this may actually be to their benefit, if anything. With the Royals having a number of free agents coming up at the conclusion of the 2017 season, one particular area of interest was the topic of draft [Read more...]