It might actually be “Bubba Time”

I don’t know what to think anymore. Bubba Starling is now batting .417 this spring with a 1.267 OPS. He has been worlds better at the plate than any other option the Royals have in RF (assuming Soler is the Opening Day DH) and we all know about his track record defensively. The longer Spring Training goes on, and the longer Bubba has success at the plate, the longer I think there’s a chance he could actually break camp with the big league club.

The biggest reason he has a chance is that Brian Goodwin has been freaking awful. Goodwin is batting .048 and doesn’t offer a ton in the way of defense. Goodwin is certainly serviceable, but he actually rates poorly in all three outfield spots throughout his career and would never be confused as “good” defensively. Combine that with a weak bat and you get, well, nothing.

Goodwin is a 28-year old who has been worth 1 fWAR over 502 PA in his career. The hope of him being some kind of asset is probably over. In fairness, Bubba Starling is 27 years old and has never made his big league debut, but you’d be silly to not acknowledge the significantly higher ceiling that Bubba presents for the Royals in RF. If Bubba was even able to post an 80 wRC+, he’d be worth something like 2 fWAR. Brian Goodwin, the owner of a career 99 wRC+, has been worth 1 fWAR in his career.

I said earlier this spring that Bubba would have to go bonkers in order to break camp with the big league club. The Royals would likely have to DFA Brian Goodwin in order to make room for Bubba in Kansas City and you know they probably don’t wanna do that. However, Bubba has continued to be scorching hot and Brian Goodwin has not.

If Dayton Moore and company were EVER going to just say, “Screw it,” for lack of a better phrase, and let Bubba Starling come up and make his MLB debut alongside Kyle Zimmer, it would be 2019. All hope of competing officially went down the drain with Salvy’s injury and this year should officially be about the young guys. I was skeptical early on, but I’m in full blown “screw it” mode now. If the theme of your team is going to be speed and defense, there’s no better candidate to man RF than Bubba Starling. Let Bubba play, it’s Bubba Time.

 

 Photo Credits: Minda Haas Kuhlmann

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6 thoughts on “It might actually be “Bubba Time”

  1. I’m all for cutting Goodwin and giving Bubba his spot. Goodwin was signed last year as a backup when it was clear Paulo could no longer cut it. The team didn’t have any trouble cutting Herrera, I don’t see why they would have trouble doing the same with another underperforming player they took a flyer on. Gore becomes the 4th OF and the logjam clears a bit.

    Phillips and Bonifacio can start their season in AAA to try and figure out how to fix their swings and be ready to come up when/if Bubba goes down with injury. BubbaTime is Now!

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  2. The pick between Bubba and good one is an easy one for me. Goodwin has already had his chance and has proven not to be the answer at any of the stops he’s made including the one with the Royals. Bubba has had no opportunity and should be given one just to see if he can produce. Keep the revolving door in motion for Bubba, Phillips, and Bonifacio.

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  3. All you fools jumping to all these decisions because of spring training results crack me up. Goodwin has a career ops of .769 in the big leagues. Starlings career minor league ops is under .700. Dont be totally shocked to find out starlings is a poor man’s Mitch Maier when the games start counting and big league veterans start trying. Yes starling is supposedly a great glove, but his bat is way behind Goodwin’s…. Despite what this two week sample size of meaningless baseball says.

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    • Did you forget that Goodwin played for the Royals last year? I’m basing my opinion more on that than two weeks of spring training games. Why was he available? Sometimes it’s good to look at more than a single stat to make an evaluation.

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  4. I agree that Spring Training stats don’t mean much. Bubba comes in the second half of games quite a bit and Goodwin is playing against the starters. Let Bubba start in Omaha and play everyday while Goodwin gets 150-200 ABs to prove himself before a DFA.
    If Goodwin still deserves to be DFA’d, then we can discuss if the Royals are better with RF Starling / DH Soler or RF Soler / DH Schwindel.

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