A lot of news items to catch up on that have happened over the weekend.
- As expected, the Royals placed Kyle Farnsworth on the 15-day DL Friday. Farnsworth is described as having “some small tearing” in his groin. The statment right now from Hillman is that Kyle may not return to the mound for at least a week and maybe longer. I’ll take this at face value since I have no reason to believe otherwise. That said, based on the other “minor” injuries that have led KC players to miss extended periods of time, I wouldn’t be at all surprised if Farnsworth is out for far more than the standard 15-day DL stint. With a roster spot opened up, LHP-Bruce Chen was called up from triple-A Omaha to make a spot start Saturday night. Chen wasn’t awful in his Royals debut and did enough to keep them in the game, going 6.1 IP and allowing 7 H, 4 ER, 0 BB, and 1 HR. In the end a 3 run 4th was all the Pirates needed while the KC offense was MIA yet again. The bats mustered only 7 hits and 1 walk, with Butler and Bloomquist getting 2 hits each on the night.
- Another “big” news story that came out this weekend was Sidney Ponson testing positive for a stimulant during the WBC. You can read the ESPN.com release here, but it’s not even really a “story.” The fact that he received a two year ban from international competition because he was taking a prescribed dietary supplement shows just how far baseball has to go to iron out the kinks in their testing policies. The Royals and MLB knew about Ponson taking the supplement, he disclosed that he was taking it at the time of the WBC testing, and he still gets a two year ban. International competition aside, “Major League Baseball will not suspend Ponson. Under the drug rules he will be treated as a first-time offender and is subject to a medical review and fine.” Give me a break, the world doesn’t operate in black and white and neither should the MLB drug policy. I’m all for cleaning up the game, but let’s inject a little common sense into the preceedings. Ponson’s only mistake was not requesting authorization which he would have received. He should not be treated as a first time offender because he’s not an “offender.” This whole thing strikes me as more ridiculous than the Royals retaining Ponson’s “services” this late into the season.
- Last night the Cleveland Indians dealt IF/OF-Mark DeRosa to the St. Louis Cardinals for 23 year old RHP-Chris Perez and a player to be named later. This is significant because it could be a sign that Cleveland is waiving the white flag on the season. If that is indeed the case, it could serve as insurance that the Royals stay out of the AL Central basement for a 2nd straight season. Click here to get the thoughts of our Cardinals blog Red Bird Rants and here to get the thoughts of our Indians blog Deep Left Field.
- With DeRosa dealt, and the Braves acquisition of Nate McLouth earlier in the season, the trade winds are starting to blow in force. The non-specific Royals related trade stories are starting to pop up as well. Click here for an article about the Royals willingness to deal from FoxSports.com. I warn you in advance that it isn’t exactly earth shattering and is something any Royals fan who loosely follows the team could probably assume. Of course the Royals are willing to deal players that are outside their core. They are a bad team with a ton of holes to fill.
- Along with the non-specific trade rumors circling the Kansas City Royals, one name has popped up on Peter Gammons’ Twitter radar, click here to read about the Mark Teahen to the Mets speculation. Teahen being on the trade market isn’t a surprise, but after the start of the season, I’d be surprised to see the Royals deal him. He has value no doubt, but his value is greater to the Royals if he stays in the organization. Now if the Mets or anyone else wants to give up a close to ML ready prospect, I’d certainly listen if I am Dayton Moore. That said, Teahen is a solid ML player skilled in most aspects of the game. He knows how to approach at bats, he knows how to play intelligent baseball, he hustles, he is able to play average defense at a number of positions, and he is also arbitration eligble and under the Royals control for two more seasons. Someone would have to knock my socks off for me to trade Mark Teahen at this point. Here’s hoping Dayton Moore is thinking the same thing.
- Speaking of our General Manager, I came across this. To say that Dayton Moore lacks vision is a comment lacking in a lot of areas. It is because Dayton has vision that the team is where it is. He has been wheeling and dealing at the major league level trying to catch lightning in a bottle and most of those moves haven’t worked. That part of the argument is true. What this guy fails to recognize is that Dayton Moore has also been building via the draft and Latin America. While doing so, Moore has gotten the Glass family to spend more than ever before on the Royals organization. Dayton had a huge hole to dig out of, but he is indeed digging out of that hole. When he took over, he added another minor league affiliate, added scouting and development staff, and has slowly surrounded himself with some of the best baseball minds MLB has to offer. He led the Royals and Glass family to a record-setting draft, in terms of bonuses awarded, in the 2008 draft and the Royals are finally a legitimate player in the Latin free agent market. That is vision.
- Want proof of the work Dayton Moore has done? Check out this news. Cheslor Cuthbert is a huge deal folks. This is the equivalent of the Kansas Jayhawks getting the Henry brothers to come and play for them. Except of course the minor detail that KU basketball is up and running while the Royals are still building. There is the key word, building. Teams can officially start signing this year’s crop of Latin free agents on July 2nd. Look for the Kansas City Royals to be very active in the market. They probably won’t land any of the most highly touted prospects, but we can expect them to land several of the guys on the next tier. This stuff just didn’t happen under Baird or Herk Robinson. The fact that it is happening now is because of Dayton Moore. By my clock he’s got at least 2 more years to captain the ship before I start questioning his position as Royals GM.
- Finally, Gil Meche has a sore shoulder. I’m not going to worry until he actually misses a start, but it bears watching.
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