3 things sure to happen with the KC Royals this season

(Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports)
(Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports) /
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KC Royals, Brady Singer
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Brady Singer will develop, refine and use a third pitch for the KC Royals in 2022.

Even casual followers of the Royals know Brady Singer has pitches he keeps well-hidden behind his slider and sinker. He has a changeup he clearly seems uncomfortable with, and a four-seam fastball he throws so rarely—1.6% of the time last season, according to Baseball Savant—that it really can’t be accurately characterized as even a fourth pitch.

For now, the same is the case with Singer’s changeup. Savant shows he went to it just 2.3% more than he did the four-seamer, a rate that simply doesn’t merit anyone calling it a true third pitch.

The lack of a reliable No. 3 stalls Singer, holding him back from realizing the remarkable potential the club detected when it grabbed him in the first round of 2018’s amateur draft. He’s 9-15 with a 4.62 ERA in two big league seasons, and his disappointing 5-10, 4.91 effort last year certainly would have been better had he possessed a good third pitch.

We’ve said all of that here before, and even suggested the club should send Singer to the minors if he won’t develop a third pitch in the majors. It bears repeating, though, because the third pitch discussion isn’t a dead horse…at least not yet.

The Royals have been patient, perhaps too patient, with Singer, and probably know it. But they write the checks and ultimately call the shots.

He’ll find a third pitch this season.