Kansas City Royals’ fans have a list of wishes for 2020, and consistency in the first base corner office should be checked twice on that list.
Welcome back to Kings of Kauffman’s 12 days of Kansas City Royals Christmas series. Every day leading up to Dec. 25, the team here will take turns coming up with their wish lists for the hometown squad. Today, the wish is for some consistency to finally make it’s way to first base for the Royals.
It’s no secret that the Royals continue to struggle greatly in certain areas around the field. Pitching is a top priority, the outfield continues to be a bit of a round-robin, and first base seems to be a void in the lineup that is an afterthought.
First base was something fans didn’t have to worry about until recently, though. The corner was covered for a good while by Eric Hosmer. Unfortunately, Hosmer left due to free agency after the 2017 season, and the Royals never really replaced him.
Since that time, the team has put up a parade of players, hoping to find someone that sticks. 2018 saw the first round of Lucas Duda in Kansas City. Sprinkle in a few games of Cheslor Cuthbert and some end of the year time for Ryan O’Hearn and it’s understandable why some concern was growing about the first base position.
O’Hearn provided the only hope and confidence in the spot, coming in at the end of the 2018 season and blowing everyone away with his power at the plate. Unfortunately, those hopes were quickly shut down when the 2019 season came around.
2019 brought an even larger assortment of first basemen, Duda (round 2), O’Hearn, Cuthbert, Ryan McBroom, and a short stint of Frank Schwindel. Out of this group, McBroom was the most productive, but he also only saw a few starts at first, most of his time being spent in the outfield.
What’s easy to see from the list of names the Royals have thrown to first over the past two years is that consistency is not a common factor in deciding who will be manning the corner. This is why the wish for day 2 of the 12 days of Royals Christmas is for more consistency at the position.
The first base positional battle was recently covered and focused greatly on Ryan O’Hearn and Ryan McBroom as the two front runners. With recent comments from manager Mike Matheny about how much he likes O’hearn, though, it looks like the young power hitter may get a second shot at taking over first full time.
If this is the case, at least the consistency wish at first may be answered, but maybe next we should ask for O’Hearns bat to return to proper form.
Keep following along as we take turns making our 12 days of Royals Christmas wishlist!