Part II: New Year’s Resolutions for the Royals
Matt Kelsey took the top 10 most popular resolutions here, and applied them to the Royals. After reading his list, I have decided to add 5 items to it (because I was too lazy make any resolutions for myself, and it is easier to make resolutions for a struggling organization). Below are my 5:
11. Resolve to give fans a look into the future
Royals fans need something to be excited about this season. One place to start is its rich farm system. Widely regarded as the best in baseball, the talent in the minors includes the likes of Eric Hosmer, Mike Montgomery, John Lamb, Jake Odorizzi, and Mike Moustakas. The fans, having endured losing season after losing season, should see some light at the end of the tunnel with a few of these guys getting their proverbial ‘cups of coffee’ with the big league team. Some of these prospects might just play their way onto the roster, like Mike Moustakas, arguably the Royals most Major League ready prospect – which leads directly into number 12.
12. Resolve to avoid a Moustakas mistake
Mike Moustakas is the future of this Kansas City Royals’ team. To call him up too early might be a little bit of history repeating itself. The once proclaimed George Brett reincarnated – Alex Gordon – jumped straight to the Major Leagues from double A. If the Royals are smart about Moose, they won’t repeat the same process as they did with Gordon. The Royals should take a conservative approach and let him see approximately 150 triple A at-bats, and play into the month of June before allowing him to step on Kauffman Stadium soil. Using this formula, 2011 could be the year of the Moose.
13. Resolve to finish better than 27 games back in the division
The 2011 Royals are not going to be contenders, that is a well-known fact. The starting rotation boasts Luke Hochevar, Vin Mazzaro, Kyle Davies, and Sean O’Sullivan. The key to success starts with pitching, and quite frankly the Royals do not have it. The brightest spot for the pitching staff is the closer, Joakim Soria. With a less than impressive lineup supporting the cast of mediocre pitchers, the Royals will need some help to finish better than last place. All of that aside, the Royals could overachieve this year and turn a few heads with its stockpile of young talent. This resolution hinges on a lot of luck and a lot of energetic leadership from the talent waiting in the Minor Leagues.
14. Resolve for higher attendance
Last year, the Royals attendance ranked 23rd out of 30. While not terrible given the fact the team was out of contention by July, fans supporting the Royals can certainly do better. Losing Zack Grienke to Milwaukee certainly does not help this cause. It needs a “face of the franchise,” someone marketable, and someone the Royals can sell to the fans as being worth the price of admission. Could Luke Hochevar live up to his draft position and become that face for the pitching staff? Perhaps Soria? Billy Butler does not exactly fit the bill for the position players but he is the Royals only suitable “face” and will have to do for now. The advertising and marketing staff members have a tough challenge in front of them, because the Royals need someone they can use to convince a casual fan to attend some games at The K this season.
15. Resolve to find some pitching
Can the Royals really rely on Luke Hochevar to be its ace this season? Losing Bruce Chen to free agency and releasing Brian Bannister are not necessarily massive losses, but this team has got to find some suitable pitching to remain competitive in the division. Another problem last year was middle relief pitching. Finding the right mix to get to Soria in the ninth inning could prove to be a difficult task with Robinson Tejada, Gil Meche, Jeremy Jeffress, and Dusty Hughes. A resolution to find some pitching from anywhere will be a beneficial endeavor for the Royals this year.
Agree or disagree with any of the resolutions? Feel free to comment below.
One thought on “Part II: New Year’s Resolutions for the Royals”
Marketing the 2011 Royals will not be an easy task. Soria is not guaranteed to pitch on any particular day, Butler is solid, but not yet a superstar. I think Royals fans are sick of hearing about the ’85 Champs. Maybe it is time to celebrate the first Royals playoff team, the ’76 Western Division Champions. With Whitey in the hall last year, he should be able to stop by and Brett is usually available.
As for the team on the field, the bullpen will probably be a strength this year. Tim Collins looks like he is ready for the show. Meche and Tejada were solid last year and Soria is Soria. Some of the minor league talent (albeit the B list talent) may be ready to make a move. Everett Teaford might make the team out of spring training.
And Alex Gordon will dominate.