With the World Series behind us, Gerrit Cole wearing Boras gear to his team press conference, and our first snow last night it’s officially the 2019-2020 off season. The Royals started their off season officially making headlines for us this morning announcing the hiring of Mike Matheny as the new manager. The move isn’t a surprise as we all saw this coming.
There will be mixed reactions but I don’t mind the hiring at all. I’ve had the chance to talk with Matheny a few times and I’ve always enjoyed him and his passion for baseball and people. I view managers differently now than I have in the past. Now it is all in the question, “could I play for this guy?” Last year at the ABCA clinics in Dallas, I listened to Matheny talk and was ready to run through a wall for the guy following his post-clinic speech and question and answer session.
The off season is going to bring free agent rumors and signings, the Rule 5 draft, and some trades. The Royals feel like they are close to competing and feel their window could be close to opening. With several offensive pillars in place, they will probably turn their eyes to pitching and leadership this off season trying to get things in order for the 2021 season.
Dozier, Mondesi, Soler, Salvy, and Whit seem to be entrenched and capable of leading an offense to the promised land. Now we just have to get the right fit of players around them. Adjusting to the majors takes some time for guys and I wouldn’t be surprised to see several of Lopez, O’Hearn, Starling, McBroom, and Phillips become a more sure thing next year. Those who don’t will probably move on as the organization keeps working to find the right pieces.
We could have a new left fielder next year or Alex could be back out there. We don’t know yet. I wouldn’t be surprised to see number 4 back in left field, retire, or sign a one-year sweetheart deal with a team like the Phillies, Nationals, or Astros as he tries to win another World Series title.
It looks like Ian Kennedy and Danny Duffy will remain as the pillars in the pitching staff. I would guess that Singer, Kowar, Lynch, and perhaps Bubic will be moving up soon. I’m guessing there will be a few signings like Homer Bailey and Jake Diekman as those have worked out well for us the last few years.
Whatever happens, we promise it will be fun and we’ll bring you the best coverage of the Royals minor leagues that we can. Here’s to the off season!
Image taken from the KC Royals Facebook page.