KC Royals: Brad Keller and the rest of the 2020 rotation predictions

KC Royals, Brad Keller, 2020 Rotation Predictions (Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images)
KC Royals, Brad Keller, 2020 Rotation Predictions (Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images) /
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Kansas City Royals, Danny Duffy
KC Royals, Danny Duffy (Photo by Eric Espada/Getty Images) /

Danny Duffy has been a part of the KC Royals rotation for a few years, and it’s likely he will continue to see starts unless he continues to regress.

Danny Duffy is one of the few KC Royals that remains from the World Series team. If only he could find his form from seasons like 2014 through 2017, there would be no question that Danny Duffy would be at the front of the Royals rotation.

While it’s likely Duffy will remain a starter, he has struggled the last few years and has seen some regression in terms of production. Duffy was once a decent starter for the Royals, showing some inconsistency, but regularly eating some innings, keeping his ERA around or under 4.00.

Since 2018, though Duffy has seen his ERA rise to 4.88 in 2018 and 4.34 in 2019, and has seen less control with his walk rate increasing from past years and his strikeout rate slowly decreasing. One cause of this may be due to injuries. Duffy has struggled at times to stay healthy, and though he has still managed to put together some innings, he has seen time on the injured list in the past few years.

In 2019, Duffy’s strikeout rate decreased, but saw improvement in most of his other stats. His ERA, though still high, was getting closer to that 4.00 mark, his walks decreased, and he ended the season on a high note.

Duffy went back and forth most of 2019 and in August he saw himself back on the injured list after giving up 8 runs in 4.2 innings. When he returned though to start a game on September 1st, Duffy started to look like his old self.

Duffy Managed 30.1 innings in September over 5 starts, giving up 8 earned runs, finishing with a record of 2-0, striking out 25 and held an ERA of 2.37. Of course, this is a fairly small sample, but it looks as though Duffy may have finally started to figure it out.

Whether or not Duffy can continue the form the team saw in September remains to be seen, but because of his past with the Royals, it warrants another look for him in spring training and creates a likely possibility he will start the season in the rotation. If he continues to struggle, he may be another case of a veteran trying to regain some steam in a bullpen role.