KC Royals News: Whitey Herzog, power rankings, injuries

There's plenty of Tuesday Royals news.
Focus On Sport/GettyImages

Almost four years have passed since I last wrote at length about Whitey Herzog, one of the best, if not the best, managers ever to lead the KC Royals. The "White Rat" never won an American League pennant, and consequently never skippered Kansas City in a World Series — getting to and winning the Fall Classic had to wait until he managed the Cardinals — but no other manager in franchise history has won as many division championships as Herzog, and he made so much of teams well-assembled for the artificial surface and spacious outfield of Royals (now Kauffman) Stadium.

Fans can, and will, long debate who among Herzog, Ned Yost, or Dick Howser, each who succeeded with different Royals players and rosters, is the best to ever manage the Royals. That I made a case for Herzog, detailed his stellar career, and called for the retirement of his number in that last lengthy piece I wrote about him, reflects what a believer I was in Herzog and how important I will always consider him to be to the franchise.

The Royals may, and should, someday retire Herzog's Number 24. But it will unfortunately be posthumously if it happens — sadly, the man who in 2010 took his well-deserved place in the National Baseball Hall of Fame and is a member of the Royals Hall of Fame, died Tuesday at age 92.

Baseball will miss him dearly.

Some uncertainty still surrounds Michael Massey

While the Royals received some good news Monday about Salvador Perez, who was injured during Sunday's loss to the Mets, when second baseman Michael Massey will return to the club isn't as clear.

MLB.com reports that the minor league rehabilitation assignment Massey's been on since April 5 will continue. Although he's slashing .409/458/.636 with six RBI in five games at Triple-A Omaha after going hitless in one appearance with Double-A Northwest Arkansas, Massey will remain with the Storm Chasers as they kick off a six-game road series at Nashville tonight.

Don't look for his stay in the minors to last much longer, though. That he's swinging the bat so well suggests he'll be back soon.

Kansas City soars in power rankings

The Royals, who at 11-6 are the talk of baseball and trail American League Central Division-leading Cleveland by only a half-game, are suddenly near the top of MLB.com's power rankings. Released Monday, the latest ratings have Kansas City in sixth place, up 12 places from last week. That the club ranks so high really isn't that surprising given its vastly improved pitching, better offense, and solid defense.

More KC Royals News