4.) Defer to Youth Throughout the Season
This dovetails a bit with the previous slide. Fair or not, the veterans on the 2018 team who aren’t part of the franchise’s future should have a short leash. If guys like Gordon or Moss struggle, let Bonifacio and Soler get even more at-bats. On the flip side, let the young guys struggle.
Last year, it didn’t make sense to start Mondesi at a position he wouldn’t be expected to play in the majors. The idea was to get him experience against MLB pitching. That’s fine if the team isn’t expected to compete, which will be the case next season. It wasn’t the case in 2017.
In a lot of ways, the organization and Ned Yost, in particular, need to treat players like Mondesi the way they treated Escobar and Gordon last year.
In a lot of ways, the organization and Ned Yost, in particular, need to treat players like Mondesi the way they treated Escobar and Gordon last year. Let them play through the rough stretches. It builds character and shows you have confidence in them. Sometimes you have to take drastic measures with a prospect like Gordon and Moustakas.
More often, though, the young guys just need to work through their struggles. The aforementioned platoons, while also allowing even more players to get regular plate appearances, gives the manager a chance to see how his players work through adversity. The players who can thrive in a platoon situation are the kind of players you need on your team.
They are willing to do whatever it takes for the team, they are able to step up whenever called upon and they are unselfish players who enjoy their teammates’ success. Those are the guys the Kansas City Royals need to find, and 2018 provides the perfect opportunity.