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Preview: Yardbarker: Kansas City Royals

Yardbarker: Kansas City Royals

Recent articles about Kansas City Royals


The long goodbye

25 Apr 2018 07:56:26 -0400

It wasn’t supposed to be like this. Not for this player. Not in this city. For this team. Yet here we are. Alex Gordon has become a fringe player for the Royals. He returned to the Royals lineup on Tuesday night, hitting seventh in the order. He struck out looking to close the second, ripped one to the gap in left-center just out of the reach of his old teammate Lorenzo Cain, and flared one to short left (or deep third, depending upon your perspective). He finished the night with a fluke base hit when he rolled one over to second base, only for it to hit the runner, Jorge Soler. (Score that a base hit.) Gordon scored one of the Royals two runs following a couple of productive outs after his double. It was a modest return for a player with what figures to be below modest expectations.  His OPS+ in the small sample of his 24 plate appearances was a meager 18, or 78 percent below league average. It’s nine points lower than the man who was demoted to make room for him on the 25-man roster, Paulo Orlando. Let’s go

Royals can't recover after Kennedy's foot injury

24 Apr 2018 23:25:46 -0400

Royals right-hander Ian Kennedy left Tuesday's game against the Brewers after three innings with a right foot contusion. X-rays were negative. He was hit in the top of the third by a line drive off the bat of Ryan Braun, which went for an RBI infield hit.

Kennedy exits after comebacker off foot

24 Apr 2018 21:33:46 -0400

Royals right-hander Ian Kennedy left Tuesday's game against the Brewers after three innings with an apparent lower leg injury. He was hit in the top of the third by a line drive off the bat of Ryan Braun, which went for an RBI infield hit.

Hammel looks to notch first win against Crew

24 Apr 2018 18:32:45 -0400

Right-hander Jason Hammel (0-1, 3.20 ERA) takes the mound on Wednesday at 7:15 p.m. CT for the finale of a two-game Interleague set against the Brewers at Kauffman Stadium. Hammel matched a career high with nine innings on Friday against the Tigers, and he gave up five hits and two runs while striking out four.

Royals activate Alex Gordon, Salvador Perez from disabled list

24 Apr 2018 16:21:30 -0400

Gordon was placed on the DL April 10 while Perez missed Kansas City’s first 20 games.

Royals activate Salvy, Gordon from DL

24 Apr 2018 14:49:20 -0400

The Kansas City Royals announced today that the club has reinstated outfielder Alex Gordon and catcher Salvador Perez from the disabled list, returning both from rehab assignments. Gordon had been on the disabled list since April 10 (retroactive to April 9) with a left hip labral tear, while Perez had been sidelined since Opening Day with a left knee sprain. To make room on the 25-man roster, the club optioned catcher Cam Gallagher and outfielder Paulo Orlando to Omaha

Indians to sign Melky Cabrera

23 Apr 2018 23:27:32 -0400

The Indians have reportedly agreed to a minor-league deal with veteran outfielder Melky Cabrera. Tenchy Rodriguez of ESPN Deportes Radio first tweeted the news.Cabrera, 33, went unsigned over the just-completed offseason after a poor finish to his 2017 campaign with the Royals. But he had been an above-average offensive performer in the first half of the season and ended with an overall .285/.324/.423 slash line for the year.The switch-hitting Cabrera has turned in quality output at times with the bat, though he has rarely strung together good seasons in succession. In his thirteen total seasons at the game’s highest level, he carries a cumulative .286/.335/.418 batting line with 131 home runs.While the Indians are pacing the AL Central, they have just three players currently sporting above-average overall work at the plate. Cabrera could provide an option as a DH or in the corner outfield, though he’ll surely need some time ramping up before he’ll be ready to join the MLB roster.

AL Injury Notes: Rangers, Royals, Mariners, Orioles

22 Apr 2018 15:45:10 -0400

The Rangers activated center fielder Delino DeShields from the DL prior to their game Sunday and sent fellow center fielder Carlos Tocci to the DL with a bruised left hip. This represents a quick return for DeShields, who suffered a broken left hamate bone March 31 and was expected to miss four to six weeks. Neither Tocci, a Rule 5 pick, nor Drew Robinson effectively grabbed the reins in center during DeShields’ absence. Rangers center fielders have hit a league-worst .148/.242/.193 in 100 trips to the plate, 92 of which have come from Robinson and Tocci. The Royals have promoted right-hander Clay Buchholz from Double-A to Triple-A, per Tony Boone of the Omaha World-Herald. Buchholz will make a rehab start Sunday, his second of the year, and could debut with the Royals as early as next Saturday, Jeffrey Flanagan of suggests (Twitter link). The 33-year-old Buchholz, who missed nearly all of last season with the Phillies after undergoing surgery to repair a flexor tear in his right forearm, joined the R

Royals expect Salvador Perez to return next week

20 Apr 2018 12:20:37 -0400

After a very disappointing start to their 2018 season, the Kansas City Royals are finally getting some good news.Manager Ned Yost confirmed Friday that the Royals are expecting Perez to return next week after injuring himself on the eve of Opening Day. Perez tore his MCL in a freak accident just prior to the start of the season, and it’s more or less set the tone for the Royals, who are a dreadful 3-13. Perez can only do so much, but the backbone of the Royals should at least give his struggling teammates a lift when he returns to the lineup.

Royals OF Alex Gordon to begin rehab assignment on Friday

19 Apr 2018 18:01:37 -0400

The Kansas City Royals could be getting some much needed reinforcements soon.Alex Gordon is set to begin a rehab assignment on Friday, the Royals say. He will be rehabbing at Triple-A Omaha. Both the high level starting spot and the proximity to Kansas City suggests they anticipate a quick return to the big club.Gordon was placed on the disabled list on April 10 with a labral tear in his hip. He was batting just .174 (4-for-23) on the season.Gordon is in the third season of a four-year, $72 million contract and has been a major bust since signing the deal, as his average plummeted to .220 in 2016 and .208 last season. This year does not seem to be getting a whole lot better, but there is still plenty of time for a turnaround.

AL Central notes: Victor Martinez consdering retirement?

19 Apr 2018 14:30:34 -0400

Tigers DH Victor Martinez hasn’t made any formal decisions on his future, but the five-time All-Star at least hinted at retirement following the 2018 season during an interview with’s Anthony Castrovince. The 39-year-old Martinez, who missed time last season due to an irregular heartbeat, talks with Castrovince about the frightening incident when he first felt symptoms during a game — a sensation that was all the more troublesome given the history of heart issues that runs in his family. As Castrovince explains at greater length, Martinez lost his father to a heart attack at a young age, which only serves as further motivation for him to spend as much time with his own children as possible.“Honestly? I’m ready,” the longtime Tigers slugger tells Castrovince. “…I know I left everything in this game. I think the biggest problem for athletes is they don’t know what to do after baseball. That won’t be my problem.”More from the division… The Royals assigned minor league signee Clay Buchholz to Double-A aft

Royals really wanted to face Ohtani

17 Apr 2018 10:30:57 -0400

Monday, Shohei Ohtani and the Los Angeles Angels were slated to face off against the Kansas City Royals. But weather would get in the way of that. And eventually, the game would be postponed altogether.Then Royals players would chime in, starting with Mike Moustakas:“Anytime you get to face a guy who’s that caliber a player, (with) that reputation, obviously you want to go do that. But I think for the way the situation was, I think it was best for everybody involved that we didn’t end up playing the game.”But his first impression remains the same. Moustakas likes what he sees.“Really impressed. He’s got great discipline at the plate, a great eye for the zone. Obviously, he’s got tremendous power, tremendous bat speed. What really stood out to me was his speed. I didn’t know he was that fast, as fast as he is. He’s just a phenomenal baseball player.”And while teammate Whit Merrifield thinks Ohtani is good, he’s not ready to go over the top just yet.“He had a good series against us, squared a couple of balls up

Royals pitcher takes wheel after ice damages bus, injures driver

16 Apr 2018 18:42:47 -0400

A nasty ice storm in Toronto didn’t simply postpone Monday’s game between the Toronto Blue Jays and Kansas City Royals. It also seriously damaged the team bus and briefly caused Kansas City reliever Blaine Boyer to take the wheel.As the bus was en route from the team hotel to the airport, a piece of ice crashed right into the windshield, injuring the driver. Boyer then jumped in to help get the bus pulled over. Looking at the picture there, it is a wonder that nobody (especially the driver) was seriously hurt. It’s also a good thing that everyone on board remained calm enough to get the bus pulled over.That certainly had potential to be much worse than it was.

Shohei Ohtani explains his turnaround from spring training

14 Apr 2018 09:25:10 -0400

Shohei Ohtani’s miserable spring is a distant memory now to say the absolute least, and now he is offering his explanation for the stunning turnaround.After the Los Angeles Angels defeated the Kansas City Royals by the final of 5-4 on Friday night, the two-way sensation gave a funny quote about his colossal improvement from spring training to the regular season. Here is what Ohtani had to say, according to Joon Lee of Bleacher Report. Ohtani went 2-for-4 with a double in Friday’s game. That brought him up to a spectacular .367/.424/.767 slash line on the season to go along with a trio of home runs and 11 RBIs. Ohtani is also a perfect 2-0 so far on the mound with a 2.08 ERA and 18 strikeouts in 13 innings pitched.When you compare that to the 23-year-old’s performance in spring, just a matter of weeks ago, to say that he got better is quite an understatement.

Shohei Ohtani faces defensive shift for first time

12 Apr 2018 23:52:44 -0400

MLB teams haven’t found much success trying to get Shohei Ohtani out at the plate, so the Kansas City Royals decided to try something new on Thursday.The Royals employed a defensive shift on Ohtani for the Japanese slugger’s at-bat in the ninth inning. They moved shortstop Alcides Escobar to the right of second base and shifted third baseman Mike Moustakas towards shortstop. Ohtani hit a grounder to Moustakas and was thrown out, so it’s the possible the ball could have found a hole had they been in usual positions. Earlier in the game, Ohtani drove in three on a bases-clearing triple. He also walked in the game.Ohtani is up to 11 RBIs in just seven games as a hitter. His OPS is 1.183, which is pretty ridiculous considering he’s also been the team’s best pitcher.

Alex Gordon placed on DL with labral tear in left hip

10 Apr 2018 16:42:08 -0400

The Royals announced that they’ve placed left fielder Alex Gordon on the 10-day disabled list with a labral tear in his left hip. Recently claimed outfielder Abraham Almonte has been recalled from Triple-A Omaha to take his place. Kansas City didn’t provide an immediate timeline within its announcement, though manager Ned Yost suggests that the injury may not be as bad as it sounds (Twitter link via Rustin Dodd of The Athletic). Yost said that Gordon will be re-evaluated in five days and could return as soon as two weeks down the road in a best-case scenario.Gordon, 34, inked a franchise record four-year, $72 million contract with the Royals in the 2015-16 offseason. At the time, the left fielder had made three consecutive All-Star teams and been one of the key factors in the Royals’ return to prominence in the American League Central. From 2011-15, Gordon slashed .281/.359/.450 (121 OPS+) and took home four Gold Glove Awards. Baseball-Reference pegged his efforts at 27.2 wins above replacement in that five-y

Royals re-sign Kyle Zimmer

06 Apr 2018 19:05:07 -0400

The Royals have re-signed righty Kyle Zimmer, as Rustin Dodd of The Athletic was among those to report on Twitter. He’ll return to the organization on a minor-league deal.That outcome was just what the Royals hoped for when they removed the talented, but oft-injured hurler from their 40-man roster and ultimately released him. Clearly, no other teams were willing to utilize a 40-man spot to take a chance on Zimmer; evidently, none offered a better opportunity to him otherwise.Zimmer, 26, is still working back from shoulder problems that are the latest in a line of ailments. The fifth overall pick in the 2012 draft, he has shown well when healthy. Zimmer has a 3.54 ERA in the minors, with 10.8 K/9 against 3.1 BB/9, but has compiled those numbers in just 259 total innings.

Royals place Kyle Zimmer on release waivers

03 Apr 2018 13:18:14 -0400

The Royals have placed former top prospect Kyle Zimmer on release waivers, as Maria Torres of the Kansas City Star was among those to report (Twitter links). He had been designated for assignment recently.It is not entirely clear why Zimmer was placed on release rather than outright waivers, but the Royals evidently do not plan to bid adieu if he does clear. Rather, the hope would be to plug Zimmer back in the system — presumably, on a new minors deal — if another club does not elect to put him on its 40-man roster or otherwise woo him with a more appealing offer.The 26-year-old Zimmer has not yet had a chance at making good on his promise owing to a litany of injuries. He has already undergone elbow, shoulder, and thoracic outlet procedures since being taken fifth overall in the 2012 draft.Shoulder troubles again limited Zimmer last year, when he worked to a 5.40 ERA in 36 2/3 innings in the upper minors. But he was long rated as one of the game’s hundred best prospects and has recorded 310 strikeouts in hi

Offseason In Review: Kansas City Royals

31 Mar 2018 17:55:39 -0400

This is the latest entry in MLBTR’s 2017-18 Offseason In Review series.  Click here to read the other completed reviews from around the league.Despite their reported intention to rebuild, the Royals spent much of the offseason courting Eric Hosmer and made more short-term signings than trades that indicated a lengthy re-build is at hand. Kansas City still remains near the top of its payroll comfort zone, however, and looks like a long shot to contend.Major League signings Mike Moustakas, 3B: One year, $6.5 million (includes $1 million buyout of $15 million mutual option) Lucas Duda, 1B: One year, $3.5 million Jon Jay, OF: One year, $3 million Alcides Escobar, SS: One year, $2.5 million Wily Peralta, RHP: One year, $1.525 million (includes $25K buyout of $3 million club option) Justin Grimm, RHP: One year, $1.25 million Scott Barlow, RHP: One year, $650K Total Spend: $18.925 million Notable Minor League signings Ricky Nolasco, Blaine Boyer, Ryan Goins, Tyler Collins, Seth Maness, Cody Asche, Kyle Lohse

Salvador Perez out 4-6 weeks after tearing MCL while carrying luggage

28 Mar 2018 18:21:24 -0400

The Kansas City Royals season is not off to a good start.On the eve of Opening Day, Royals catcher Salvador Perez tore his MCL while carrying luggage, and is expected to miss 4 to 6 weeks of action. Perez isn’t the first ballplayer to suffer a strange off-field fall, and he surely won’t be the last. Still, it’s a strange one, and not particularly well-timed.Perez played in 129 games last season, hitting .268 with 27 home runs. During their most successful years, he had been the team’s iron man, missing a total of just 55 games over the three-year period from 2014 through 2016. It seems he won’t be quite as durable this year.