As we rapidly approach Spring Training, there is reason to be optimistic. We see the players working out in Suprise, conforming to a new team. As a fan, I’m feeling really confident with this 2020 team. It’s good to see the same feeling carries over to the executive level.
At the first full-player workout on Wednesday, new Royals owner John Sherman had this to say this about the team; “This team’s goal to compete for a championship” and that he sees “a lot of confidence in the team. GM Dayton Moore was later interviewed and stated that, “This group is very hungry and feels like they have something to prove”. He also added that there’s an edge in this team that he “hasn’t seen in a few years”. A few years puts us back to around 2017, when the Royals won 80 games. In the past two seasons they have averaged just 58.5 wins.
There is no doubt that everyone in the Royals organization is doing everything they can to throw these 100-loss seasons out the door and get back to being competitive. It’s really nice to see everything coming together. New owner John Sherman has stated he really cares about the baseball side of things of his job. GM Dayton Moore has built a World Series team before and knows when he sees a good team. New manager Mike Matheny has plenty of playoff experience including a 2013 trip to the World Series. It appears the Royals organization is currently in really good hands.
The Royals lineup has many potential All-Stars such as Whit Merrifield, Jorge Soler, Hunter Dozier, and Salvador Perez who is coming off Tommy John surgery in 2019. Adalberto Mondesi, Alex Gordon, and Maikel Franco also give fans reason to be excited. Players such as Nicky Lopez, Ryan O’Hearn, Brett Phillips, Bubba Starling, and Ryan McBroom still have to prove themselves. If a few of them do, we may be looking at a really good Royals lineup.
The pitching staff is where many questions arise. In 2019, the Royals had the 4th-worst ERA in baseball. In the rotation, Brad Keller and Danny Duffy look to be the most reliable arms. Jakob Junis and Mike Montgomery likely have themselves a spot in the rotation as well. There is still a spot up for grabs that could end up in the possession of highly-touted prospect Brady Singer. The 2019 bullpen was bad. They blew many leads and left many fans very frustrated at times. One highlight is that Ian Kennedy was actually a pretty solid closer as he had a 3.41 ERA with 30 saves. Scott Barlow and Tim Hill will likely once again be mostly reliable out of the pen. The return of Greg Holland is a great sight, and if he is even half the pitcher he once was it would be very fulfilling.
All in all, this 2020 Royals team has many solid pieces. Whether it is enough to compete for a playoff spot as early as this season, we will see. Nonetheless, the arrival of Spring Training has us all up on our feet. Friday at 2:05 pm the Royals compete in their first 2020 Spring Training game against the Texas Rangers!
The Royals will be playing their first game tomorrow and there is lots of competition in camp. There are always players that must prove they belong on a major league roster. Especially for the Royals, many players must prove they belong with the next wave ... Read more