Author Topic: Royals General Discussion  (Read 11961 times)

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  • Jon Carney
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Royals General Discussion
« on: 30 Dec 2011 10:47:15 PM »
I feel like this will be a good place to share some information about the Royals franchise; outlook, needs, ramblings, etc.

To start the new year, the Royals already look quite a bit different than the 2011 version, and that may or may not be a good thing.  We've jettisoned several large, expiring contracts in favor of - well - less expensive alternatives.  Those alternatives may or may not contribute to the Royals in 2012 or beyond, but we're hopeful that the cash saved will allow us to add some names that will absolutely be helpful beyond 2012.

The outlook for 2012 isn't completely bleak.  The Royals have two very good starting pitchers and a great hitter in the lineup right away going forward, and we're hopeful that they'll all be there for the foreseeable future.  The additions made through the trades of Pena, Papelbon, Arroyo, and Hill should help in a big way this year in terms of playing time and should also be of help in the future at least in terms of bench players under team control.

Long term is a real question mark for the Royals right now.  Do we offer LTCs to the obvious candidates on the roster next year?  It really depends on how our younger players progress during 2012.  In a perfect world, the Royals will come at DMB in 2013 with Bumgarner and Price sporting >120 ERA+ along with Minor, Porcello, and - dare I say - Felix Doubront possibly all sporting near 100 ERA+.  In a more pessimistic world, the Royals have several pitchers in the minors who are set to be good bottom of the rotation candidates, but will need to reserve some funds going forward for another top of the rotation starter.  The offense is another story completely.  Outside of Bruce, there's not a whole lot to be extremely excited about at this point.  Hopefully things will change there!

The trading block will always be updated as well, but at this point, we're willing to listen to any offer, but not actively looking to move anyone on the roster.
« Last Edit: 6 Jan 2012 4:44:09 PM by Royals »
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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #1 on: 4 Jan 2012 11:34:27 AM »
Here's a fun question.  Madison Bumgarner obviously sits at the top of the Royals Top 10 Prospects list.  Mike Minor is obviously #2 on the list.  Who's #3?  Blake Swihart?  Chris Dwyer?  Brandon Guyer?  Someone else?

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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #2 on: 4 Jan 2012 1:04:54 PM »
That is actually a really fun question to think about.

Whether you value proximity to the majors, upside, or likelihood to succeed when talking prospects, there's little doubt that Bumgarner is number 1 for the Royals and Minor is number 2.  As you pointed out, Jonathan, after that it gets a little interesting!

Guyer is a guy who is close to the majors (got a cup of coffee last year) and has a great arm along with some power...but despite his strong wOBA and wRC+ he just doesn't get a lot of prospect love.  He's been a little old for his level the last couple years, and probably needs to show at the ML level at this point to prove he's not a bench bat or AAAA type player.  He didn't even crack the Rays BA top 10 this year.  If he can hit at the ML level, he plays, though...because his defense is good enough.

Swihart has a ton of upside as a young switch hitter.  If he can stick behind the plate, then he's an easy choice for number three in the Royals system, IMO.  However, he wasn't really a full time catcher even in HS until his senior year, so there is a LOT of development that needs to happen still.  His bat still works at 3B or a corner OF spot, but it's not the huge advantage it would be behind the plate.  Here's hoping he sticks at C!

Dwyer really struggled in his first full season at AA last year.  I'm very interested to see where he slips to in the prospect rankings, because he was a high riser prior to last year.  This is a big year for Dwyer; he's going to turn 24 around opening day and needs to harness his stuff.  I don't think he's at number 3 for the Royals right now, but a big year in 2012 would be really nice.

Tony Sanchez is probably the only other candidate to be number 3 right now in the Royals organization.  When drafted, it was thought he'd have above average power for a catcher to go along with his average defensive skills.  Those skills haven't really panned out to this point, and Sickels has even graded him at a C+ this year.  He needs to impress in 2012.

If I were grading our system, I would list the top 5 as follows:

1. Bumgarner
2. Minor
3. Swihart
4. Dwyer
5. Sanchez

Guyer might be a close 6 on the list.

What all this really points out to me is that the Royals need to have an OUTSTANDING draft in 2012...with our top two prospects joining the big league club and the possibility that Guyer is a bench bat, there is a real need to replenish.  The nice thing about the system is that it does have the potential to improve.  Cumberland, Sanchez, and Dwyer will all benefit greatly from a rebound year in 2012; and the system does have a couple high ceiling arms that were just drafted and either haven't pitched a full season or didn't sign and went to college.
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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #3 on: 5 Jan 2012 2:39:03 PM »
Right now it's the 23rd-best system according to the league rankings, but the value gap between your team and the 24th-best one is huge; you're in the middle of the pack right now (albeit at the tail end).  The good news is that Bumgarner and Minor are both guaranteed contributors ASAP.  The bad news is that the mid-season update for our rankings is probably going have KC right near the very bottom because of that, even with the influx of drafted prospects; both players will by then have lost their rookie eligibility.  Then again, as you've said, we could see bounce-back years from several of those guys, so I suppose it's too early to call KC a bottom-feeding system JUST yet.

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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #4 on: 5 Jan 2012 3:18:19 PM »
I'm hoping that Loux and Stephenson make up for at least a little of that lost value (is Whitson draft eligible this year?), but you're right...the system is going to take a big hit.  Honestly, that's what the system is for in my opinion...to serve the needs of the big league club.  BUT, it does put me a little on edge to have so little depth there in case of injury.  I'd much rather fill an injury through the reserve roster than sign another player to a ML contract.
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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #5 on: 5 Jan 2012 3:20:58 PM »
You can almost always find a decent short-term stopgap in the free agent trash bin after the season starts.  Especially considering the concern about starting a player's service time clock ticking, it's often better to just grab a crusty veteran for the $0.8M in-season minimum.

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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #6 on: 6 Jan 2012 5:17:48 PM »
I've basically copied/stolen the Braves set up because of how clean and efficient it is.  Please use this all purpose thread for Royals discussion.  I will continue to use the trading block and transaction analysis threads for all pertinent information there.  Thanks!
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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #7 on: 6 Jan 2012 10:00:09 PM »
I'm surprised you aren't sticking Gamel at third base, where his AV rating makes him very valuable.  At very worst, it means choosing Kotchman over Jose Lopez in that lineup.

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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #8 on: 6 Jan 2012 10:05:58 PM »
I was hoping that Gamel would be playing 3B for me, but unfortunately he only received a FR rating there this year.  He may well move across the diamond, but I have Lopez penciled in there right now because of his VG defensive rating there in 2011.

Gamel getting downgraded actually hurts me in a couple areas, as Guzman was rated AV at 1B last year as well, but was PO at both 2B and 3B.  Guzman may end up as my DH.
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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #9 on: 6 Jan 2012 10:52:21 PM »
Yeah, for some reason I'd thought Gamel had gotten an AV rating at third.  That makes a lot more sense, and he's probably between 1 and 2 WAR either at first base or third base.

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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #10 on: 7 Jan 2012 12:28:43 PM »
The other problem is that it's forced me to rethink my Free Agent target list.  I guess it's a good thing that Milwaukee's projections came out before we got too deep into free agency.  This is one of the reasons I would be against altering our setup so that free agency would be completed before ZiPS started releasing projections.
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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #11 on: 8 Jan 2012 1:00:20 PM »
Yeah, for some reason I'd thought Gamel had gotten an AV rating at third.  That makes a lot more sense, and he's probably between 1 and 2 WAR either at first base or third base.

The error rating for guys will determine a lot as well.  I like Soriano's range and arm in LF, but his error rate is atrocious.  Gamel's range is FR at 3B, but his error rating is lower there than 1B, and the same is true for LF.  Regardless, I'll have Gamel and Soriano in the lineup pretty much every day and just do what I can to field the most competent defense I can find.

The only person who's really set in stone at this point in Bruce (assuming he keeps his EX rating in RF).
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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #12 on: 9 Jan 2012 8:40:35 AM »
The other problem is that it's forced me to rethink my Free Agent target list.  I guess it's a good thing that Milwaukee's projections came out before we got too deep into free agency.  This is one of the reasons I would be against altering our setup so that free agency would be completed before ZiPS started releasing projections.

Actually, until DMB itself stopped releasing a projection disk a few years ago, we always completed FA before the projections were available. And it was a much different dynamic - a GMs player evaluation skills played a much bigger role. Now, with the projections based on ZIPs, the projections are mostly available for FA, so it comes down to GMs needing to evaluate what a given performance was worth to them. Prior to that, the GM had to evaluate the player on his own to come up with a likely performance, and then evaluate how much that was worth to him. It used to take evaluation and valuation skills for FA; now it just takes valuation skills. And that's too bad, in my mind.

Scot.
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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #13 on: 9 Jan 2012 9:30:11 AM »
The other problem is that it's forced me to rethink my Free Agent target list.  I guess it's a good thing that Milwaukee's projections came out before we got too deep into free agency.  This is one of the reasons I would be against altering our setup so that free agency would be completed before ZiPS started releasing projections.

Actually, until DMB itself stopped releasing a projection disk a few years ago, we always completed FA before the projections were available. And it was a much different dynamic - a GMs player evaluation skills played a much bigger role. Now, with the projections based on ZIPs, the projections are mostly available for FA, so it comes down to GMs needing to evaluate what a given performance was worth to them. Prior to that, the GM had to evaluate the player on his own to come up with a likely performance, and then evaluate how much that was worth to him. It used to take evaluation and valuation skills for FA; now it just takes valuation skills. And that's too bad, in my mind.

Scot.

I agree 1000 per cent. A couple of years ago I was not aware of the ZIPS site. Kyle Kendrick came out with a low rating, I didn't know that and I claimed a $5M pitcher on waivers (oops). In a perfect world, I would like our season to be based on real life that season stats. I once belonged to a baseball league named Scoresheet Baseball (and Scoresheet Hockey also) and enjoyed them. I dont know how practical it would be for our league and the cost was around $75 per team.

Larry
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Re: Royals General Discussion
« Reply #14 on: 9 Jan 2012 9:46:20 AM »
Scot,
I can see where that would have been more challenging and possibly more entertaining.  I will definitely say that I'm not a fan of the projections being 2/3 done when FA hits. Hopefully, technology will allow a change to be made one way or the other and our season time table wouldn't have to move much.

However, I think the evaluation process is still there...it's just evolved. I spend time elvauating based on my park and division. It's likely not to the same level that you had to evaluate in the past, but it is still there.

Larry,
Do you mean outbid league would function like a fantasy baseball league (real life stats)? I'm not familiar with the league you mentioned, but I'm curious to know more.
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