Royals win, RC gets more photos

Last night, the Royals played another very nice game in beating the Blue Jays, 5-3. Every time Runelvys Hernandez pitches, RC becomes increasingly convinced that the Royals have themselves a future stud in the rotation. For his effort, Hernandez (6.0 IP, 7 H, 3 ER, 1 BB, 2 K) won his career-high eighth game, and he lowered his ERA to 4.34. The only real mistake Elvys made was a first pitch fastball he left up to Vernon Wells, who quickly dispatched it into the left field seats for a two-run HR. Hernandez's control was better than usual, as he threw 50 out of 81 pitches for strikes, walking only one batter. Because of the 98 degree heat, he was pulled after only 81 pitches, but he probably could have gone longer if he had to.

With Kyle Snyder making the start today for the Royals, RC wouldn't be at all surprised if Hernandez drops the appeal of his 10-game suspension and begins serving it tonight. Of course, this raises the question of who the Royals will option back to the minors when Snyder is activated. With 12 pitchers already on the roster, it is certain to be either Jimmy Gobble, Marvin Nunez, or J.P. Howell. Preliminary reports are that Howell will be "sent down," even though he won't go anywhere and will be recalled for his next start in the rotation. Doing so would burn an option on Howell, but the Royals might not have any other choice. Stay tuned.

  • RC staff was all set to begin making phone calls to Kansas City and Arizona in an attempt to discover why RC #4 Royals Prospect Jeffrey Bianchi hasn't played in four games. However, this became unnecessary when we read in the KC Star yesterday that Bianchi has been out with a mild back strain. That's good news, because like a worried mother, RC had imagined all sorts of terrible things happening to Bianchi. Thankfully, it turned out to be something minor.

  • Speaking of RC prospects, we are pleased to introduce our new poll. Rather than us arbitrarily deciding who will take Donnie Murphy's spot on our top five prospect list, we've going to let our readers choose. We've selected five candidates: Luis Cota, Chris Lubanski, Chris McConnell, Kila Kaaihue, and Jonah Bayliss. Vote early and vote often, but please, vote wisely.

    And before you ask, no, we will not entertain Mitch Maier.

  • The breaking news right now is that former Royal and former RC favorite Joe Randa has been traded to the San Diego Padres for pitching prospects Travis Chick and Justin Germano. Randa, who got off to an amazing start in Cincinnati this year, has apparently fetched quite a ransom. Chick has been pretty terrible this season at AA, getting rocked in the Southern League. However, his strikeout ratios are still very good, and the kid throws HARD. Germano is a little older and a little more advanced, and he's put together a pretty nice season at AAA. Both pitchers were ranked as top 10 Padres prospects by Baseball America (Chick #4, Germano #7) before the season, and it's hard to believe that Padres GM Kevin Towers would be stupid enough to give both up for 35-year-old veteran having a fluke season.

    Now that Randa is in San Diego, expect his numbers to drop rapidly, particularly his SLG pct, which has been hovering around and above .500 all year. Some corners of Royals Nation will no doubt whine that the Royals could have kept Randa (a fantasy) and received the same bounty, but pay them no mind. It made no sense whatsover to keep him with Mark Teahen so close, and we can be pretty certain that he wouldn't have put up same power numbers this season had he played half his games in Kauffman Stadium, which has yielded the second-fewest home runs in baseball this year.

    On a side note, perhaps the Royals should start trading with San Diego more often.

  • As a continuation of yesterday's post, we now have more great photos of some Wichita Wranglers, courtesy of Kent Ogle. If you haven't done so, be sure to check them out -- they've been added to that post. In addition, here's a cool photo Kent snapped of Justin Huber:

    We're also expecting to receive some photos from yesterday's Royals game, and we'll post those when we get them.

  • Editor's note: At some point while we were writing the above post, the Royals made Snyder's promotion official, and they opted J.P. Howell to Omaha. As we said, however, don't expect Howell to actually pitch for Omaha, despite what our new friends at Rotoworld say.


    At 7/24/2005 1:41 AM, Anonymous Brian S. said...

    Based upon Buddy Bell's comments on the Royals pre-game show, Howell should actually get a few starts in AAA Omaha. Bell said they sent him there rather than AA Witchita to face the more veteran, more patient hitters of AAA.

    As long as the rotation can stay healthy, I look for Hernandez to continue to appeal for a while and Howell to stay in the minors.

    I'm hoping the Royals can find a taker for Lima's current hot streak--possibly in a waiver deadline deal. However, if the Royals do trade Lima and Hernandez serves his suspension, they are still gonna wind up short in the rotation.

    Maybe they will finally start to stretch Sisco and Wood out in longer middle relief outings and give them a start or two. Otherwise, we're looking at bringing Howell back up before September.

    I'd rather see them protect Howell's arm and shut him down after a few AAA starts. Keep in mind, any pitcher under age of 23 shouldn't be pitching more than 180 innings this season. Howell shouldn't be pitching more than 150 however.

    At 7/24/2005 2:32 AM, Blogger Dave said...

    Brian, After hearing some of the comments after I submitted this post, I think you're right about Howell getting a start or two at Omaha. I'm a little surprised, but not terribly disappointed.

    Of course, I don't know why Hernandez would continue to appeal -- there's little chance the league reduces his suspension, and all the Royals pitchers who are gonna be healthy anytime soon are currently healthy.

    At 7/25/2005 1:14 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Lubanski and Cota are definitely BOTH more well-regarded than Jeffrey Bianchi right now. That guy's had less than 100 pro ABs.

    At 7/25/2005 3:09 AM, Blogger Dave said...

    "more well-regarded" by whom?

    Not Royals Corner, and that's all that matters here! Besides, nothing is set in stone.

    At 7/25/2005 6:56 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Well, the ten commandments ARE set in stone, so to say nothing is.......perhaps a little exagerrated.

    Just teasing of course.

    At 7/27/2005 1:07 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

    By whom? The Royals. I like the Royals Corner. It's a cool site.

    So don't go mucking it up by building an alter to Jeffrey "I've got 100 ABs and then I hurt my back" Bianchi.

    Lubanski and Cota are much better.


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