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The Gonzo Lounge>***Official 2021 Royals Season Repository Thread***
ChiefsCountry 12:01 PM 01-07-2021
For all things Royals for the new year.

Free Agent Signings:
Carlos Santana
Mike Minor
Michael Taylor
Ervin Santana

Top 10 Prospects:
1 Bobby Witt Jr., SS
2 Asa Lacy, LHP
3 Daniel Lynch, LHP
4 Jackson Kowar, RHP
5 Erick Pena, OF
6 Nick Loftin, SS
7 Kyle Isbel, OF
8 Khali Lee, OF
9 Jonathan Bowlan, RHP
10 Carlos Hernedez, RHP
[Reply]
KChiefs1 12:33 AM 02-11-2021
Andrew Benintendi, OF
Age: 26

The Red Sox had one of the top outfields in baseball with Benintendi in left, Jackie Bradley Jr. in center and Mookie Betts in right when they won the 2018 World Series.

Now, Betts is a Dodger, Bradley is a free agent and Benintendi has been shipped to Kansas City.

The championship year was Benintendi’s best season, when he put up 4.1 WAR, as measured by Baseball Reference.

His offense dropped a bit in 2019—his OPS fell from .830 to .774—and he was limited to just 14 games in 2020 because of a strained muscle in his rib cage.

At his best, Benintendi provides a leadoff man’s skills and, despite the decline from 2018 to 2019 to 2020, was showing an ability to more consistently impact the baseball. His average exit velocity, hard-hit rate and barrel percentage each improved year-over-year.

The Royals are betting that Benintendi—Baseball America’s 2015 College Player of the Year and the No. 1 prospect in the game entering the 2017 season—can get back on track with a change of scenery. He is under team control for two more seasons.
[Reply]
KChiefs1 12:34 AM 02-11-2021
Red Sox have two players coming from the Royals. This trade is too complicated right now to even try and speculate on specific names, though Brad Keller, Josh Staumont and Scott Barlow came to mind from the Royals side of things.

From an emotional fan standpoint, it’s sad to see him go. From a more objective team-building standpoint, given his recent struggles this could make sense depending on the return, but we’ll withhold judgement until we learn who exactly is coming back.
[Reply]
dlphg9 01:18 AM 02-11-2021
Originally Posted by KChiefs1:
Red Sox have two players coming from the Royals. This trade is too complicated right now to even try and speculate on specific names, though Brad Keller, Josh Staumont and Scott Barlow came to mind from the Royals side of things.

From an emotional fan standpoint, it’s sad to see him go. From a more objective team-building standpoint, given his recent struggles this could make sense depending on the return, but we’ll withhold judgement until we learn who exactly is coming back.
WTF are you talking about? Keller, Staumont, and Barlow aren't going to be in this trade.
[Reply]
duncan_idaho 07:30 AM 02-11-2021
Originally Posted by KChiefs1:
Red Sox have two players coming from the Royals. This trade is too complicated right now to even try and speculate on specific names, though Brad Keller, Josh Staumont and Scott Barlow came to mind from the Royals side of things.

From an emotional fan standpoint, it’s sad to see him go. From a more objective team-building standpoint, given his recent struggles this could make sense depending on the return, but we’ll withhold judgement until we learn who exactly is coming back.

Yeah, there’s no way any of those names are in there.

PTBNL is going to be, at best, 10-20 prospect range and more likely 20-30.

I could see some SP excess - a Zack Haake, for example - headed to Boston.

But it won’t be current big leaguers.
[Reply]
KChiefs1 08:52 AM 02-11-2021
Originally Posted by duncan_idaho:
Yeah, there’s no way any of those names are in there.

PTBNL is going to be, at best, 10-20 prospect range and more likely 20-30.

I could see some SP excess - a Zack Haake, for example - headed to Boston.

But it won’t be current big leaguers.
I hope so...I know everyone is hyped for this trade but I've been keeping track of Lee for awhile & I hate to see him go for 2 years of a declining Benintendi.

Gregg Jefferies comes to mind when I think of Benintendi.
[Reply]
BigCatDaddy 08:59 AM 02-11-2021
Originally Posted by KChiefs1:
I hope so...I know everyone is hyped for this trade but I've been keeping track of Lee for awhile & I hate to see him go for 2 years of a declining Benintendi.

Gregg Jefferies comes to mind when I think of Benintendi.
A declining 26 year old?
[Reply]
KChiefs1 09:00 AM 02-11-2021
Originally Posted by BigCatDaddy:
A declining 26 year old?
Check his stats from 2017 to 2018 to 2019 to 2020.

You think that's an ascending player? You think the Red Sox would have traded him if they didn't think he was declining?
[Reply]
Chiefspants 09:08 AM 02-11-2021
Originally Posted by KChiefs1:
Check his stats from 2017 to 2018 to 2019 to 2020.

You think that's an ascending player? You think the Red Sox would have traded him if they didn't think he was declining?
How many at bat’s did he have in 2020? Don’t really think 2020 is an accurate marker.
[Reply]
KChiefs1 09:12 AM 02-11-2021
Originally Posted by Chiefspants:
How many at bat’s did he have in 2020? Don’t really think 2020 is an accurate marker.
Fine...I just have doubts. We will see very soon. :-)
[Reply]
KChiefs1 09:40 AM 02-11-2021
https://theathletic.com/2381397/2021...bout-the-move/

Royals acquire Andrew Benintendi: Answering 5 questions about the move
by
Alec Lewis

Originally Posted by :
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Here’s how the Royals described what they coveted all offseason:

“We need more on-base guys,” general manager Dayton Moore said in September. “We need more quality ABs from two other spots in the lineup.”

“We’d like to get a left-handed bat in the outfield if we can,” Moore said in November.

“I think a left-handed bat would be very helpful,” Moore said in January.

And there you have the broad explanation for Wednesday night’s news. The Royals acquired Andrew Benintendi from the Boston Red Sox in a three-team deal including the New York Mets. Khalil Lee, whom the Royals drafted in 2016, was traded to the Mets; Franchy Cordero, whom the Royals acquired last season from the San Diego Padres in exchange for left-handed reliever Tim Hill, was dealt to Boston. The Royals included two other players to be named later in the deal but did not have to give up one of their young pitching prospects.

This was a move that mirrored most of the Royals’ offseason activity. Months ago, they pinpointed a target. As time passed, they remained in touch and studied up. They then completed a deal, setting up for a more competitive 2021.

That’s the basic formula for how this occurred, but here are five more questions and subsequent answers on the deal.



Why did the Royals make this move?

To reiterate: The Royals wanted a left-handed-hitting outfield bat — a reliable left-handed-hitting outfield bat. Cordero was an option, but he has dealt with numerous injuries over the course of his career.

And that gets to the more big-picture element of this deal.

A couple of months ago, Moore also said this: “Our mindset is going to be to go out and win every single pitch, every inning, every game. That’s the only way we’re ever going to win another championship. You’ve got to expect to win in all aspects.”

Expecting to win requires reliability, and though prospects Lee, Nick Heath and Kyle Isbel had shown promise in recent years, none was remotely close to as reliable as Benintendi.

“It fits perfectly,” Moore said Wednesday night, mentioning Jorge Soler, Whit Merrifield, Adalberto Mondesi and Salvador Pérez, four players in whom the Royals are confident. “We wanted to add to that group with Carlos Santana, Mike Minor, Michael A. Taylor and now Benintendi.”

What will Benintendi bring to the table?

The 26-year-old has played five seasons in the big leagues. He won a World Series in 2018. And in college at Arkansas he won the Golden Spikes Award. That’s the historical context.

More recently in 2020, Benintendi struggled. He played in 14 games, posting a .442 OPS. A right rib cage strain shut him down in August, ending his season, but those 52 plate appearances did not concern the Royals.

“We believe in the player,” Moore said. “He’s performed at every level. We’re confident he can get back to his accustomed level. He’s just entering his prime, and we know from our information he’s worked his tail off this offseason. He’s in great shape.”

The Royals assuredly view Benintendi’s ability in the context of his entire career. He’s posted a 107 OPS+ in 1,837 total at-bats (a .273/.353/.435 slash line). Among active Royals hitters, only Santana (31.4), Pérez (24.2) and Merrifield (14.1) have higher career WAR than Benintendi (9.8).

Benintendi won’t become a free agent until 2023, meaning the Royals have two seasons of control. The Royals haven’t yet had extension conversations. They want their newly acquired player to get settled first. But, as Moore often says, the Royals will work to keep talented players in Royals blue for an extended period of time.

Where will Benintendi fit?

The Royals’ outfield is finally filled out: Merrifield will play in right field, Taylor will start in center and Benintendi will get the nod in left field, where he’s played 425 career games.

Benintendi has wavered in his defensive production throughout his career. For reference, Alex Gordon, who is inarguably one of the best defensive outfielders of all time, posted a plus-12 defensive runs saved in 2018, per FanGraphs. Benintendi, on the other hand, posted a plus-3. Kauffman Stadium’s depth may challenge him, but again, there’s certain reliability that comes with a player as experienced as Benintendi.

Lineup-wise, it’s conceivable to think Benintendi slots somewhere toward the middle-lower half, considering Merrifield, Mondesi, Soler, Pérez, Santana and Hunter Dozier can all do damage. Another byproduct of this deal: The Royals can allow Nicky Lopez to play his typical Gold Glove-caliber defense and have the confidence he can work through ups and downs at the plate.

What did the Royals give up?

Lee has long been an interesting prospect within the Royals’ system. Similar to Cordero, he, too, has suffered a number of injuries in recent years. He has also struggled to loft the ball, and as competitive as the Royals have seen him, there’s a maturity jump the 22-year-old has yet to clear.

There’s also the fact the Royals have another left-handed-hitting outfield prospect: Isbel.

“We feel really good about Kyle Isbel,” Moore said Wednesday night. “It wouldn’t shock us a bit if he forces his way on this field sooner than later. He’ll get that opportunity as long as he’s producing in the minors and forcing our hand.”

For years, Royals scouts have compared Isbel to Benintendi. There’s a naturalness in the way both players play. Maybe Benintendi bridges the gap for when Isbel is truly ready. Or maybe they’ll play together, given Merrifield is 32 years old.

“There’s room for both of those guys in the lineup someday,” Moore said.

A minimum of two years for Benintendi also allows development time for soon-to-be 18-year-old Erick Pena.

What does this mean for where the Royals are in their competitive window?

“We believe we can win,” Moore said Wednesday night.

He wasn’t talking about 2022 or 2023 or beyond. No, he was talking about this year. About the season that is slated to begin April 1.

That’s why the Royals signed Santana, an on-base machine who has won an American League pennant. That’s why they added Taylor, who can roam the swaths of grass in center field and has won a World Series. That’s why they added Minor, who has MLB playoffs experience, and Greg Holland, too. This move was simply an extension to that.

“He’s a proven talent,” Moore said of Benintendi. “He’s been a part of the playoffs. He’s a proven winner. He gets on base. He does a lot of things you need players to do in your lineup if you’re going to win.”

Asked about the influence owner John Sherman had on the move, Moore said they had detailed conversations throughout the process. Sherman was supportive, as he so often has been. Within the answer, though, Moore delved deeper into the current psyche of the organization, which was cemented by Wednesday night’s move.

“This is a winning culture,” he said. “We have a terrific manager. We have an unbelievable fan base that expects us to put a competitive team on the field. We’ve won World Championships. We’ve been to back-to-back World Series. We’ve proven as a group that we can accomplish some very special and unique things. … We just focus on what we do, not what anybody else has done or done in the past.”

[Reply]
KChiefs1 09:49 AM 02-11-2021
Originally Posted by dallaschiefsfan:
Didn't see that anyone had posted this yet. Four in the top 100. Three in the top 50.
https://www.baseballamerica.com/rank...100-prospects/

Bobby Witt (#16), Daniel Lynch (#25), Asa Lacy (#37), Jackson Kowar (#95)
Keith Law's Farm System Ranks:
Originally Posted by :
15. Kansas City Royals

The Royals’ investment in college pitching in the 2018-20 drafts is really paying off, as they’ve remade a system they’d all but strip-mined to win a World Series and another pennant in 2014-15. They’ve also added a handful of very high-ceiling position player prospects to the system in Bobby Witt Jr. and Erick Peña, both signed in 2019. The real test of the system will be how some of their players who struggled in 2019, like Nick Pratto, MJ Melendez or Khalil Lee, bounce back after a year focused just on development at the team’s alternate site.

[Reply]
siberian khatru 10:00 AM 02-11-2021
Originally Posted by KChiefs1:
Fine...I just have doubts. We will see very soon. :-)
https://insidethecrown.substack.com/...drewbenintendi

Originally Posted by :
Benintendi was the seventh overall pick in 2015 out of Arkansas and spent all of 151 games in the minors before debuting at 22 in August of the next season. He hit well, but retained rookie eligibility so he was the top prospect heading into the next season and had a commendable rookie year before breaking out in 2018, hitting .290/.366/.465 and playing a tough left field very well.

The beginning of his 2019 was rough. He kept fouling balls off his right leg. And the end was tough due to an oblique injury. But it took a brutal September to bring his numbers down that year. He was hitting .283/.357/.459 at the end of August and then proceeded to hit just .141/.243/.219 the last month. Of course, then he played in only 14 games in 2020 and hit .103/.314/.128. Yep, he had just four hits and only one extra base hit. So his last 35 games have been brutal.

It was another injury that plagued his 2020 season, a rib injury that ended his year on August 11, which was obviously just a couple weeks after the season started in the 60-game schedule. So what does this all mean for him going forward?

To me, the biggest thing is that if he’s healthy, there’s very little reason to assume he’s anything but the guy who hit .282/.358/.451 before the oblique injury derailed his 2019 season. Is there a reason to assume he’ll stay healthy? Well no, obviously not, but before the injury, he found himself getting better and better contact every season. His barrel rate was improving as was his hard hit rate and his xSLG was rising every season.

[Reply]
Prison Bitch 10:06 AM 02-11-2021
I’m afraid DM overpaid for “grit” again.


OTOH, he’s brought in 4 vets this winter that are all upgrades from their predecessor. For a 28-32 team that wasn’t all that bad last year......THERE’S A GLEAM!
[Reply]
KChiefs1 10:16 AM 02-11-2021
Originally Posted by siberian khatru:
https://insidethecrown.substack.com/...drewbenintendi
Ok...I'm trying to convince myself this is a good trade for the Royals.



[Reply]
bsp4444 10:31 AM 02-11-2021
Who’s playing third base this year?
[Reply]
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