As I mentioned on my sports reports this morning, former Lincoln Southeast and Husker star Alex Gordon along with Luke Hochever of the Kansas City Royals were on their winter caravan through Nebraska yesterday.
The Royals are hosting their Fan Fest this weekend in Overland Park, Kansas, and even though there are still 28 days before pitchers and catchers report, both Gordon and Billy Butler who split time between KC and the O-Royals are heading down to Arizona at the beginning of February to get a head start of the season.
When you talk to Royals’ fans, you get the same type of response. “We need Alex and Billy to come around if we want to get this moving in the right direction.”
Fans are right, but remember it is a team game and while these two could be the future of this organization, I’ve liked the moves the team has made around them.
They went out and added Coco Crisp to centerfield. That adds some more speed and perhaps a better bat than Joey Gathright. David DeJesus can move to one of the corner spots. It potentially opens up a trade for Mark Teahen who had been rumored to go to the Cubs earlier this offseason.
The Royals then went out and got Mike Jacobs, who put up career numbers for home runs last year with Florida. KC is banking on his power to help protect Jose Guillen who last year was the team’s really only deep ball threat.
With the addition of Kyle Farnsworth along with Ron Mahay, the poses a great righty-lefty setup role to get to Joakim Soria who had a 1.60 ERA with 42 of 45 save opportunities.
Gil Meche, Brian Bannister, and Hochevar to join Zach Greinke could provide an even better rotation than last year if Bannister can bounce back from his sophomore slump, if Hochevar gets his command down and Meche gets off to a better start.
Things are looking up for this team. Lots of optimism as we head to Spring Training.