Royals Outpost

The heart-felt musings of a Kansas City Royals fan who isn't always right, or logical, but does always care.

7.3.06

Royals Already Without Greinke, Redman

Whew, yet another robust break from the bloggin' action. I've been very thorough in my preparation for the fantasy baseball season this year, and between that and my 9-5 schedule, the ol' blog has fallen by the wayside until now, the early stages of spring--and what is already a riveting World Baseball Classic!

Between two no-doubt homers by David Ortiz off of the likes of Johan Santana and Carlos Hernandez (He's still a prospect, people!) and a ball off the bat of Miguel Cabrera that defied the very laws of physics and bounced off a wall and went UP in the air, the Dominican Republic's 11-5 triumph over Venezuela (don't let the final fool you, it was 6-5 DR going into the ninth inning), really helped woo me toward the WBC. If only the American players cared as bad as Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic's players clearly do, it might be getting more media hype here in the states.

On to the latest KC news. The hot starts of outfielders Kerry Robinson (eight hits in 19 at-bats) and Chip Ambres (.733 SLG in 15 at-bats) have been lost in the shuffle with the departure of Zack Greinke from camp for personal reasons, and most recently, Mark Redman's balky knee that will keep him sidelined until as late as mid-May. Redman's had minor surgery and will soon be on the mend; the Greinke conundrum isn't nearly as simple as operate/recooperate.

Torn cartilage in the journeyman left-hander's left knee is why he is out of the running for the Opening Day (Elarton vs. Runelvys, now). Redman is a guy I like on a personal level, although I can admit he's not as good a fit in the AL. While his 4.85 ERA over 190 innings could have been useful to a team with so little to offer in terms of starting pitching, Redman missing six or seven starts is not much of a setback to the team other than financially.

Greinke missing more than a small handful of starts, on the other hand, is a very serious pinch. The Royals have a bright future in terms of position players, but when it comes to starting pitching, we are a critically-deprived system. Zack Greinke and Denny Bautista are the only arms I consider legit, so even one of them "busting" is a killer blow. What's more, there doesn't seem to be anyone in the front office who has a clue as to when Greinke will be returning. I realize baseball is the last thing on the boy's mind right now--doesn't mean it's not hurting KC to be without him. In my book, he's the most important player to the next four years of Royals' baseball, so we can only hope he can put his situation at home in the very back of his mind and use it as motivation for 2006. Hope all's well, Zack.

Since their 5-5 tie with Texas on March 2nd, the Royals have alternated wins and losses down in the desert, and their record stands at 3-2-1. Being a marginally sane individual, I put about as much weight into spring training stats, wins, and losses as I do into Steve Phillips' in-game analysis. That's very little, for those of you keeping score at home. Health and building stamina is all that I look for in March, and hopefully Redman is the only one too wounded to keep walking at the start of the regular season. Honestly, all I want to see--or rather, not see--are the words "Mike Sweeney" and "iffy back" in the same day.

With the baseball engine firing up, the pistons that are the sluggers, the speedsters, and the studs just beginning to churn, I can guarantee the posting will be much more liberal than once every five weeks. Can't ya just smell the outfield grass, the foul-line chalk? So what if we only win 63, so what if we only win 36?! I can't hardly wait any longer!

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