The Royals haven't had an identity in awhile. There's a chance they have one in 2023.
Mr. L, Bottom line: Would Dozier still be sucking up a roster spot, let alone a starting position, if he batted left?
David, I’m ALL aboard the bullpen train this year. All aboard that ship. They will be good. They will be good in a way that I don’t think the offense or starting pitching will be yet. Everything to do with depth. Everyone looks good in spring when “hopefully” everyone is healthy. But everyone is playing the top guys right now. That rarely happens come July and as the season progresses. I’m not pooping on the offense. I think they will be an average unit this year with some real potential to be above that with the young guys. But we have somewhat unproven on top of unproven depth on offense. Anything can happen there. Starting pitching, I know you like Bubic, and Lynch, and these talented players. And I’m fascinated with them in the experiment they are running this year. But it’s also hard to keep selling these guys as the solution if they struggle again this year. Basically, this is a long winded way to say I believe in the bullpen, think I believe in the offense for the most part, believe a little less in the starting pitching….which will come up to a 73-76 win team. But then when I pull myself out of the spring roses….I look at the roster and it is a lot of the same guys as last year. At least they have made this year interesting for not expecting to be competitive. But its spring, what the hell, I’ll believe for now in a semi competitive team.
Doggone it! I had been enjoying the telecasts SO MUCH! But then last night Hud showed up. We all knew it was coming but it's still annoying as hell.
My hope would be that the Royals have enough guys with successful seasons that they feel justified in going out and spending some money on SP for 24. The problem with the starters isn't so much depth as it is the quality. Singer is the only guy who is likely to be a #2 or better starter this year, much less two years from now- and they haven't extended him yet. Barring a miraculous turnaround from Asa Lacey, or Jon Bowlen fulfilling the potential he showed prior to TJ, they have some depth guys in Heasley and Zerpa and little else. So that is 8 guys you can hand the ball to and have a chance. 7 of them are 4-5 starters in good MLB rotation. Lyles is ok. Greinke is 40+. Are Lynch and Bubich any good? Time to find out. If not, the Royals have to fix their SP this off-season with FA.... and that is assuming a lot of what we hope will happen offensively does. The Royals seems to do a good job of finding arms for the bullpen. One of the few things they've done well consistently this decade and that falls far short of off setting the failure to develop front of rotation starters.
Inevitably someone or multiple someones in the rotation will go down. Bubich will be in the rotation at some point. If both Heasley and Zerpa get a lot of starts, it probably won't be a good winning pct for the Royals season.
Ah, spring, when flowers bloom and hope is in the air . . . I'd like to think otherwise, but this could all be an Arizona mirage. We won't really know anything until we've seen 30 or 40 regular season games. On the identity of the '14-15 Royals, I'd add a couple things to your description. One is speed, with Dyson, Cain and Gore. The other, which does not get mentioned enough in my opinion, is DH. Both seasons, the Royals essentially had one guy whose whole job was DH. In 2015, it was Billy Butler, who was really good. And in 15 it was Kendrys Morales, who was out of the world: .362 OBP, 106 RBIs, led the team in doubles, tied with Moose for lead in homers. I feel like he is largely forgotten now, probably because he was not with the Royals for very long, but I think he was the 2015 offensive MVP for sure.
I'd still move Witt to third and put Lopez back at short and leave him alone then keep Massey at second. It's almost a can't miss situation. Lopez will bounce back offensively and is by far the best defense shortstop on the team and one of the best defensive in the league. Witt is not. I don't think he ever will be. I think he'll make a be 3rd baseman than shortstop. I can understand them wanting dozier to make it at 3rd but I don't think it's going to make a difference if they use him or move Witt to 3rd. I do believe that with Witt, Lopez, and Massey the infield will be much better than dozier, Witt and Massey. I think the latter combination will be pretty bad defensively.
I, contrary to many, have always loved HUD on tv.I like his enthusiasm and I think he really knows the ins and outs of the game of baseball. But, last night it seemed like he didn't want to be there. He seemed wasn't his usual self. Also the beard did nothing for him. Monty is the one who I think really brings a broadcast way down. No more Monty, please.
Have you heard from sources if they are refusing to move Melendez off catcher because that is what he wants? I’m kinda done with the Melendez at catcher thing and I think I was done with it by the end of last year. Chances are he’s not quite as bad as his numbers showed last year. But I felt like I got sold a bill of goods on his defense last year by the Royals. He wasn’t any good with the eye test and his metrics backed that up. I really think he is a solution in the outfield…at least with the bat side. And I know we’ve gone over this…but part time at either isn’t a good solution to me. I’m just curious if this is all to appease Melendez or just trying to keep his value its highest….to which point I’d say his value was highest before the entire league got to see his defense at catcher…but maybe everyone else already knew already at that point. I just don’t quite understand the thinking on this one. Role with Fermin in my eyes.
For me, the last two weeks of spring training is where you get the best look at your team before the season. Pitchers stop experimenting with new pitches and start pitching more like they will during the season. Starters of all types play more each game.
This year is tough with so many players at the WBC. For the Royals team it may work out better so the new coaches can evaluate the talent in the system. For us fans, it's hard to judge what you have.
Great piece Mr.L. I have one quick question. Is there any chance we see Gavin Cross any time this season. Boy, does he have a good looking swing or what!!!!!!!
I don’t care if they lost 2 games yesterday. I’m still drinking the kool aid!!!!!
Spring Training Champions!!!
Great article David, Are you worried any about the rotation & lack of depth there if one or two go down with an injury? The bullpen would possibly get stretched thin if any starters can’t go very deep into a game
What is the status of Jake Brentz? Is he recovered from last year's arm injury?
If the Royals need to clear some roster space, which reliever do you think is most likely to be traded?
What is the status of Jake Brentz? Will he pitch for the Royals sometime later this year?