Pitchers (11) -- John Bale, Brian Bannister, Jimmy Gobble, Zack Greinke, Ron Mahay, Gil Meche, Nunez, Ramon Ramirez, Joakim Soria, Brett Tomko and Yasuhiko Yabuta
Catchers (2) -- Buck and Tupman
Infielders (7) -- Billy Butler, Alberto Callaspo, Esteban German, Ross Gload, Alex Gordon, Mark Grudzielanek and Tony Pena Jr.
Outfielders (4) -- David DeJesus, Joey Gathright, Jose Guillen and Mark TeahenA couple of things come to mind here, first being that Ryan Shealy didn't make the team. Now this isn't unsurprising as Olivo's suspension made things difficult for KC because they had to have another backup catcher. Shealy was the obvious choice to grab a spot if German had been traded but KC and LA were unable to come to an agreement. I've been on the fence about trading German but KC really doesn't need two utility infielders and it would open a spot for Shealy (which would also take at bats away from Gload, double win).
Also, KC's decision to start with eleven pitchers makes me wonder what will happen when Olivo comes back and Tupman is sent down. Who do they call up, Shealy or Peralta? You can make a case for both but I think KC would be better off adding another position player instead of a twelfth pitcher. Peralta then would be next line in case a relief pitcher struggles or gets injured.
I think Shealy gives the team more flexibility because then Gload can return to his natural role of backup 1B/OF. Say what you want about Gload (and I have) but he does serve a useful purpose when used right. Look at his two best seasons:
- 2004 - 260 PA's .321/.375/.479/119 OPS+
- 2006 - 167 PA's .327/.354/.462/106 OPS+
The second thing that comes to mind is that from top to bottom this might be the best Royals team in a long time, even better than 2003 team although their record may not reflect that. I'm really not fond of the Tomko & Olivo signings but even those will be ok as long as Olivo stays the #2 catcher and Tomko is pulled from the rotation if/when he struggles.
So here's the opening day:
I guess Gload won't be hitting 3rd after all, nice bluff Trey. I like this lineup, of course I'd like it more if Shealy were playing first base but other than that it doesn't look too bad.
They may not compete for the division this year but it's going to be a fun ride.