October 2012

Dayton Moore/Ervin Santana teleconference notes

General Manager Dayton Moore and KC’s baseball operations staff has a clear goal this offseason:  upgrading the starting rotation.  Moore believes that the Royals did just that today by acquiring veteran righty Ervin Santana from the Los Angeles Angels.  Moore sees a high-inning pitcher that was consistent down the stretch in 2012.

Santana is excited to join the Royals – noting the good young talent on offense and defense.  He said that he had some bad luck in 2012, though no physical problems.  He is excited to play at Kauffman Stadium, saying that it is one of his favorite stadiums.  When asked about the possibility of being KC’s number one starter, Santana was confident.  If given the chance, he feels that he can fill the role.  Santana has spent his entire career with the Angels since debuting in 2005.  He will miss his long-time friends with the Angels but is looking forward to meeting all of his new teammates in KC.

Royals acquire pitcher Ervin Santana and cash from Los Angeles Angels for minor league pitcher Brandon Sisk

 The Kansas City Royals announced today that the club has acquired right-handed starting pitcher Ervin Santana and cash from the Los Angeles Angels in exchange for minor league left-handed pitcher Brandon Sisk.

“We’ve stated all along that starting pitching was a priority this off-season and acquiring someone with the resume of Ervin Santana immediately upgrades our rotation,” said Royals GM Dayton Moore.  “At just 29 years old, he has 96 major league wins, is a proven innings eater and most importantly, he competes.  Ervin has been an All-Star, has pitched in the post-season and has at least 16 wins in three different years, all of which adds a winning mindset to our clubhouse.”

The 29-year-old Santana, an American League All-Star in 2008, is 96-80 with a 4.33 ERA in 236 career Major League appearances (233 starts), all coming with the Angels since his debut in 2005.  The 6-foot-2, 185-pound right-hander was 9-13 with a 5.16 ERA in 30 starts in 2012, finishing the season with a 3.63 ERA in his final 10 starts, allowing 45 hits over 62.0 innings with 55 strikeouts against 16 walks.  He authored a one-hit shutout of the Arizona Diamondbacks on June 16 in Anaheim, joining Nolan Ryan and the only two Angels pitchers to have a no-hitter and a one-hitter.

Santana has topped the 200-innings mark in three of the last five seasons, including combining for 629.1 innings since 2010.  He has allowed fewer hits (1,444) than innings pitched (1,475.2) over his career and posted a combined opponent batting average of .240 over the last two seasons.  Santana has a career strikeout-to-walk ratio of 2.46 and has never posted a season below 2.00 in his career.  He tossed a no-hitter on July 27, 2011 at Cleveland, allowing an unearned run in a 3-1 victory and recorded 11 double-digit strikeout games in his career to this point.

Sisk, 27, signed with the Royals as a minor league free agent on July 8, 2008.  The left-handed reliever went 3-2 with eight saves and compiled a 2.54 ERA in 50 outings with Omaha (AAA) in 2012.

 

Royals decline 2013 club option on pitcher Joakim Soria

 

The Kansas City Royals announced today that the team has declined its 2013 option on right-handed pitcher Joakim Soria, making him a free agent.

Soria, 28, missed the entire 2012 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery on his right elbow on April 3.  Acquired in the Major League Phase of the Rule 5 Draft on December 7, 2006, Soria is 13-15 with 160 saves and a 2.40 ERA in 298 career Major League outings, all for Kansas City.

Royals left fielder Alex Gordon wins second consecutive Rawlings Gold Glove

Rawlings Sporting Goods Company, Inc., and ESPN2 announced tonight that Kansas City Royals outfielder Alex Gordon was awarded the American League Rawlings Gold Glove in left field for a second consecutive season.  The awards were voted on by American League managers and coaches and honor the best individual fielding performances at each position in the American and National Leagues.  First baseman Eric Hosmer, third baseman Mike Moustakas and right fielder Jeff Francoeur were named finalists for the award yesterday, but were not selected.

Gordon becomes the first Royals player to win a Rawlings Gold Glove in back-to-back seasons since second baseman Frank White in 1986-87.  He joins Amos Otis (1971, 1973-74) as the only Royals outfielders to win the award on multiple occasions.  Gordon finished second in Major League Baseball with 17 outfield assists, two shy of teammate Jeff Francoeur, on the heels of pacing MLB with 20 assists in 2011.  He led all American League left fielders in games (160), innings (1424.1), total chances (338) and putouts (319) while committing just two errors for a .994 fielding percentage, the best in the league (min. 125 games in left field).  Gordon, a former third baseman, earned his first career Gold Glove in 2011, his first full season in the outfield.

Gordon’s Gold Glove is the 20th awarded to Royals players all-time (10th different player) and the eighth to an outfielder (5th different outfielder).

Below is a list of the 20 Royals’ Rawlings Gold Glove winners:

1971 – Amos Otis (OF)

1973 – Amos Otis (OF)

1974 – Amos Otis (OF)

1977 – Al Cowens (OF), Frank White (2B)

1978 – Frank White (2B)

1979 – Frank White (2B)

1980 – Frank White (2B), Willie Wilson (OF)

1981 – Frank White (2B)

1982 – Frank White (2B)

1985 – George Brett (3B)

1986 – Frank White (2B)

1987 – Frank White (2B)

1989 – Bob Boone (C), Bret Saberhagen (P)

2000 – Jermaine Dye (OF)

2006 – Mark Grudzielanek (2B)

2011 – Alex Gordon (OF)

2012 – Alex Gordon (OF)

         Voting for the Rawlings Platinum Glove Award™ will begin tonight at 9:15 p.m. CT at www.rawlings.com, allowing the general public to weigh in as to who is “The Finest in the Field®” in each League.  Voting runs through Tuesday, November 6 at 11 p.m. CT.  To determine the Rawlings Platinum Glove Award winners, fans can only select one player among the 2012 Rawlings Gold Glove Award winners from each League.

                The Rawlings Platinum Glove Award winners will be unveiled during the 2012 Rawlings Gold Glove Award Ceremony presented by Gold Sport Collectibles on Friday, November 9, 2012, at The Plaza Hotel in New York City.  In addition to the Award presentation to this year’s winners, Hank Aaron and Cal Ripken, Jr. will accept special recognition awards, and Johnny Bench will be the sixth inductee into the Rawlings Gold Glove Award Hall of Fame, joining Roberto Clemente, Jim Kaat, Willie Mays, Brooks Robinson and Ozzie Smith.  Noted baseball fan Jerry Seinfeld will perform an hour-long show to end the evening’s festivities.

Four Royals named finalists for A.L. Rawlings Gold Glove Awards

Rawlings Sporting Goods Company announced finalists for the 2012 Gold Glove Awards today.  First baseman Eric Hosmer, third baseman Mike Moustakas, left fielder Alex Gordon and right fielder Jeff Francoeur are among the three American League nominees at their respective positions!

The Royals have had 19 Gold Glove winners over the years, with Gordon winning last year in left field.  Francoeur won a Gold Glove in 2007 while playing for Atlanta.

Hosmer was a part of 132 double plays, most in the American League.  His 103 assists were the most by a KC first baseman since 2002.

Moustakas (above) was second among A.L. third basemen in fielding percentage, first in assists, total chances and zone rating.  He led all Major League third basemen with 41 double plays.  The mark set a new Royals single-season record, breaking Mark Teahen’s total of 34 in 2006.

Francoeur led the Majors with 19 outfield assists, tying his career high from 2007.  This was his eighth straight season with double-digit assists.

Gordon finished second to Francoeur with 17 outfield assists.

The award winners will be announced Tuesday night at 8:30 Central on ESPN2.

A complete list of finalists can be viewed at:  http://www.rawlings.com/newsdetaillanding.aspx?id=1332

Royals name Jack Maloof hitting coach and Andre David assistant Major League hitting coach

The Royals today named Jack Maloof as the club’s Major League hitting coach and Andre David as the assistant Major League hitting coach. 

“We are extremely pleased that both Jack and Andre will be joining our Major League staff,” said Royals manager Ned Yost.  “Both bring valuable experience as Major League hitting coaches.  In addition, they have worked closely with a majority of our young hitters from the moment they signed and that creates a comfort level that should prove very beneficial for all of us.”

“The Royals were fortunate to have a talented group of hitting coaches within our organization,” said Royals GM Dayton Moore.  “Jack and Andre have done a tremendous job developing young hitters throughout their careers and are highly-respected amongst both the players and their peers.”

Maloof joined the Royals in 2008 as the club’s Special Assistant to Player Development and Minor League Hitting Coordinator.  The 2013 season will mark his second stint as a Major League hitting coach, having served with the Florida Marlins in that capacity from 1999-2001.  With Florida, he helped the club’s batting average rise in his first season by 15 points while the Marlins increased their home run production from 114 in 1998, the year prior to his arrival, to 166 in 2001.  In addition to his time with the Marlins, Maloof has also worked in the San Diego and Atlanta organizations.  Maloof played eight minor leagues seasons and one more with the Seibu Lions in Japan in 1979 and was named Topps Minor League Player of the Year in 1971 after batting .402.  He and his wife, Joan, make their home in Chandler, Ariz., and have two children, Justin and Jessica, and two grandchildren.

David will be in his 15th season in the Royals organization in 2013.  David most recently has worked as the hitting coach with the Surprise Royals in the Arizona League for the past three seasons.  He was the Royals Major League hitting coach from May 30, 2005 to May 1, 2006 and also served several seasons, beginning in 2001, as the club’s minor league hitting instructor.  David played for parts of two seasons in the Major Leagues with the Minnesota Twins in 1984 and 1986.  He resides in Surprise, Ariz., with his wife, Lisa, and their two daughters, Brittany and Tanner.

Under the coordination of both Maloof and David, the Royals have developed several of the top hitting prospects in the minor leagues including 2012 American League All-Star Billy Butler, 2006 Baseball America and Topps Minor League Player of the Year Alex Gordon, 2010 Baseball America Player of the Year finalist Eric Hosmer, 2010 minor league home run leader Mike Moustakas and 2012 USA Today, Baseball America and Topps Minor League Player of the Year Wil Myers.

Wil Myers wins Spink Award as Topps/Minor League Player of the Year

Royals prospect Wil Myers was announced today as the 53rd annual J.G. Taylor Spink Award winner as the Topps/Minor League Player of the Year.  Myers becomes the third Royal to win the Spink Award, joining Johnny Damon (1995) and Alex Gordon (2006).

“I am honored to win this prestigious award from Topps and Minor League Baseball,” Wil Myers said.  “To join a list with great players such as Johnny Damon and Alex Gordon is extremely humbling for me.”

This is the third national award for the 21-year old outfielder, who was named Minor League Player of the Year by both Baseball America and USA TODAY on September 4.  He is the third player to earn all three honors in the same season, joining Andruw Jones (1996) and Josh Beckett (2001).  Recent Spink winners include Tampa Bay Rays left-handed pitcher Matt Moore (2011); Los Angeles Angels center fielder Mike Trout (2010); and San Francisco Giants catcher Buster Posey (2009).

Myers, 21, opened the 2012 campaign at Double-A Northwest Arkansas and batted .343 with 13 home runs and 30 RBI in 35 games before a promotion to Omaha in mid-May.  Myers hit .304 (118-for-388) with 15 doubles, five triples, 24 home runs and 79 RBI in 99 regular season games with the Storm Chasers.  Overall, his 37 home runs were the second-most in minor league baseball, one shy of 26-year-old Darin Ruf who hit 38 for Reading (AA), while his 109 RBI ranked fourth overall and his 313 total bases led all minor leaguers. 

The Royals’ third round selection in 2009 collected two hits and drove in three runs for the U.S. squad at the SiriusXM All-Star Futures Game in Kansas City on July 8 and then three days later was selected the “Star of Stars” for the Pacific Coast League in the Triple-A All-Star Game after recording two hits, including a double, with an RBI and a run scored. He was named to the 12-member all Pacific Coast League squad on August 27.

Royals Rewind airs on Monday, October 22

FOX Sports Kansas City recaps the 2012 Royals season in a 30-minute special premiering Monday, October 22 at 9:00 p.m. CT.

The show will also air on October 26 and November 5.

Royals Rewind: Season Review includes:
-An interview with manager Ned Yost
-A roundtable with FOX Sports Kansas City’s Ryan Lefebvre, Rex Hudler, Steve Physioc, Jeff Montgomery and Joel Goldberg.
-And a look at the top 10 moments of the season.

Royals Rewind: Season Review on FOX Sports Kansas City — air dates and times (times Central)
Monday, October 22 at 9:00 p.m.
Friday, October 26 at 9:00 p.m.
Monday, November 5 at 9:00 p.m.

Alex Gordon among 10 nominees for Hutch Award

Royals left fielder Alex Gordon is among 10 finalists for the Hutch Award, which recognizes outstanding community service. 

Gordon has been a longtime supporter of Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation (ALSF).  Beginning during his rookie season in 2007, the 28-year-old outfielder has attended Alex’s Lemonade Stand events at area Hy-Vee grocery stores, participated in public service announcements, welcomed children diagnosed with cancer out to the ballpark and visited youngsters in the hospital.  The Royals and ARAMARK, the official concessionaire of Kauffman Stadium, have partnered this year to donate a portion of the proceeds from each lemonade sale at the ballpark to ASLF.  It is Gordon’s involvement in the charity that helped push this initiative to fruition.  Gordon also serves as a local spokesperson for ALSF.

In addition, the Lincoln, Neb., native became a big supporter of the Diamond Dawgs – a 12-and-under baseball team from his hometown that were “Playing for Pink” by donning pink jerseys to raise awareness for breast cancer after two members of the team lost their mothers to cancer.  Rather than sticking with tradition by having their names across the backs of the jerseys, the Diamond Dawgs selected words such as hope, conquer and fearless in tribute of the fight against cancer. 

Billy Butler was the award recipient last year.  Royals recipients prior to Butler include George Brett (1980), Dennis Leonard (1986), Mike Sweeney (2007) and Mark Teahen (2009, received the award as a member of the White Sox after being traded).

Here’s the press release from the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center:

http://www.fhcrc.org/en/news/releases/2012/10/48th-annual-hutch-award-nominees.html

Congrats to Alex on his nomination!

Royals TV ratings reach all-time high

The Royals have an exciting young core of players – we’re looking forward to 2013!!  Today, FOX Sports Kansas City sent out this press release regarding TV viewership:

Viewership for Kansas City Royals cable telecasts reached an all-time high in 2012. The 140 regular season games televised on FOX Sports Kansas City averaged a 3.8 household rating in the Kansas City DMA, according to The Nielsen Co., up 13 percent from 2011.

Ratings increased over 2011 in every month of the season except August. Viewership in September increased 52 percent over last year, the most of any month.

The 3.8 household rating surpasses the previous season high of 3.4 established in 2003. Available ratings data goes back to 1997.

“This year again showed that Kansas City has great baseball fans,” said FOX Sports Kansas City Senior Vice President and General Manager Jack Donovan. “The city embraced the All-Star Game. Attendance was up. And the TV ratings show that fans are excited about what the Royals are building.”

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