We have now eclipsed the one month mark left until the KC Royals pitchers and catchers will report to Surprise, Arizona in an effort to prepare to retain their 2015 crown. While there is just less than a month until February 19th, when pitchers and catchers report, there is just a little over two months until the April 3rd Opening Day game against the New York Mets.
Every KC Royals fan will remember the last time that they saw the Mets logo on their television screen; perhaps it was the mound logo that was being trampled by Royals players celebrating their victory, or it could have been on the hats of the sullen Mets players as they sit in the dugout witnessing the celebration taking place on their home turf.
Whatever it may have been, those blue mesh hats with the orange “NY” logo on the front will make another cameo on opening day as the Royals take on the Mets in a World Series rematch to open the season. Televised on ESPN, Royals fans will anxiously await their defending champions to show promise of another great season while Mets fans look for redemption after the embarrassing 3-1 World Series beatdown issued by Kansas City back in October and November.
What will Royals fans likely see from their time once the defending world champions take the field on that April evening? Lots and lots of familiar faces will be jogging onto the field to open up the game, started Yordano Ventura is likely to open up the season for the Royals as the #1 starter. First baseman Eric Hosmer, shortstop Alcides Escobar, third baseman Mike Moustakas, left field Alex Gordon (oh yes!) in left field, LoCain in centerfield and the World Series MVP Salvador Perez behind the plate will all set foot on the light graced field at Kauffman Stadium.
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With Ben Zobrist leaving the American League and Alex Rios becoming a free agent, second base and right field will likely be decided during spring training. According to manager Ned Yost, Omar Infante will be under siege by Christian Colon for the second base job and Paulo Orlando and Jarrod Dyson will likely split time in right field until a definite starter is decided (if that ever does happen).
Ryan Madson‘s presence in the bullpen will be replaced by the familiar face of Joakim Soria and the starting rotation will now boast the long hair and red beard of Ian Kennedy (likely as the third starter in the rotation).
Royals fans will anxiously await the return of their beloved team; Dayton Moore has done more than enough this offseason to retain the attention of every team in baseball as Kansas City is poised to make another run at the AL Central crown and beyond.
Position Player and Starting Rotation Predictions:
1B: Eric Hosmer
2B: Omar Infante
SS: Alcides Escobar
3B: Mike Moustakas
C: Salvador Perez
LF: Alex Gordon
CF: Lorenzo Cain
RF: Paulo Orlando
1st Starter: Yordano Ventura
2nd Starter: Edinson Volquez
3rd Starter: Ian Kennedy
4th Starter: Kris Medlen
5th Starter: Chris Young
7th Inning Man: Kelvin Herrera
8th Inning Set-Up Man: Danny Duffy
Closer: Wade Davis