Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Kansas City Royals 2008 Preview

2007 Record: 69-93, 5th (last) in AL Central

Key Losses: P Billy Buckner, DH Mike Sweeney

Key Acquisitions: OF Jose Guillen, P Ron Mahay, P Brett Tomko, P Yasuhiko Yabuta

Projected Rotation
1. Gil Meche
2. Brian Bannister
3. Zach Greinke
4. John Bale
5. Brett Tomko
CL: Joakim Soria

Rotation Grade: C Meche has turned out to be a good free agent signing for the Royals, who shelled out lots of loot but in return got a veteran guy, who pitches lots of innings, posted a sub-4.00 ERA, who would have won way more games with offensive support . Bannister and Greinke both have great stuff, but don't really have any real body of work to speak of. Not to mention that whole bizzare "social anxiety" issue that sidelined Greinke for the whole 2006 season. John Bale and Brett Tomko are not good 4 and 5 starters, and are sure to cost K.C. games when they face the punishing batting orders that other AL Central teams have.

Projected Lineup:
1. CF David DeJesus
2. 2B Mark Grudzielanek
3. 3B Alex Gordon
4. RF Jose Guillen
5. Mark Teahen
6. DH Billy Butler
7. 1B Ross Gload
8. C John Buck
9. SS Tony Pena, Jr.

Lineup Grade: C- Even if Alex Gordon has his breakout season, and the Royals get what they paid for from Jose Guillen, this lineup is weak. Their leadoff man does not get on base well (.260 AVG last year), their DH is an extreme liability on the basepaths, and the 7-9 hitters are generally weak. This lineup is not built to rake like others in their division.

2008 Prediction: The Royals seem to be moving in the right direction after so many years of futility. They have gone out and made some moves in free agency, albeit questionable ones, and have some talent emerging from their farm system. Unfortunately, the Royals are in the toughest division in baseball, so they have a long way to go before they are legit contenders for a division title or even a wild card berth into the playoffs.

Projected Finish: 72-91, 4th or 5th in AL Central


Young Knuckleballer said...

4th or 5th?? Who is this team going to beat?

Young Cicero said...

maybe the Twins