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Kansas City Royals Season Predictions | 2014 Season Betting Preview

2014 MLB Team Previews – Royals

The Royals have been on an upward trend for the last 5 years and their biggest leap came last year when they won 14 more games than the year before.

They missed the playoffs so you probably forgot that Kansas City actually won 86 ball games last year. That was one more than the New York Yankees.

Last year that was good for third place but most are predicting a slide by the Cleveland Indians this season so their could be room to take another step.

I would have loved to see K.C. to do more to keep the momentum going in the offseason but their additions are more cosmetic than substantive.

Sportsbook’s Odds to Win

AL Central: +400
AL Pennant: +1600
World Series: +3000

Key Additions:

The Royals did not do much but they made some changes that allow them to mix up their order – no more Alex Gordon at the top of the lineup.

Now they have Norichika Aoki and Omar Infante up there. Aoki has some speed and Infante can be a tough out but neither is all that dynamic. With Eric Hosmer and Billy Butler in the 3 and 4 spots it is too bad they don’t have a strong table setters.

Kansas City said goodbye to Ervin Santana and brought in another former Angel in Jason Vargas. Vargas was just OK with Anaheim and probably will be again this season.

That is the problem he is slotted into their second spot in the rotation and you need someone better there so you don’t kill a really good bullpen.

Probable lineup

RF – Norichika Aoki
2B – Omar Infante
1B – Eric Hosmer
DH – Billy Butler
LF – Alex Gordon
C – Salvy Perez
3B – Mike Moustakos
CF – Lorenzo Cain
SS – Alcides Escobar

I like dropping Gordon down in the order to give him a chance to drive in Hosmer and Butler who are on base a lot. Perez is one of the better hitting catchers that nobody talks about but right now it looks like their lineup ends right their. Moustakos and Escobar has terrible seasons last year and Cain wasn’t much better.

GTBets

If Moustakos could at the very least regain his power stroke he might be a little bit useful. It was very disheartening to see 8 homers disappear at this stage of his career.

Probable rotation

RH James Shields
LH Jason Vargas
RH Jeremy Guthrie
LH Danny Duffy
RH Wade Davis

Shields doesn’t always get the wins but he is a great lead dog for any rotation. He takes the ball when it is his turn and is very consistent.

Guthrie doesn’t have near the stuff but he got more wins than Shields last season. He is crafty but if the Royals are going to have another really good year they are going to need a lot from Danny Duffy.

In a limited sample size he looked really good last season. He just has to cut his walks and let his stuff work for him. Davis is just filling a gap until a better option comes along.

Closer

Greg Holland

Holland is the leader of a very good bullpen. He does not get the attention of other elite closers but he was absolutely phenomenal last season. In 67 innings he gave up only 40 hits while striking out 103 batters.

That is just one more hit and 5 more strikeouts than Craig Kimbrel in the same number of innings. He has locked down the role for sure.

2014 Kansas City Royals Prediction:

I don’t see the Royals winning as many games as last season but they are probably going to jump into second place in the division anyway as Cleveland, Minnesota and Chicago should be pretty bad. Last year as a surprise team they cleared 7 units for the season but I think they are going to probably be more even this year.

I would look for situation when Duffy and Shields are underdogs as they have the stuff to control other big league lineup.

Also, this team averages only 4 runs per game last season which was in the lower half. Just a little improvement should yield a few more overs.

They were last in the league at 39% last season. I expect improvement.

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About The Wiesguy

The Wiesguy is a newcomer to the handicapping scene. Hailing from Toronto, Canada he is always sweet on the underdogs and you can often find his thoughts, musings and picks at moneydogs.blogspot.com.


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