Results tagged ‘ Kyle Farnsworth ’
Royals general manager Dayton Moore and his entire staff have had a busy few weeks, all culminating in a press conference today at Kauffman Stadium at 3:30 p.m. Moore and surprise attendee Royals manager Ned Yost sat down at the desk in front of local media to talk about a few subjects on today’s agenda.
The first topic was the announcement that the club and Yost had agreed to a two-year contract, keeping the manager in Kansas City through at least 2012.
Yost was asked how this situation in Kansas City compared to his time in Milwaukee, when he took over a club coming off a 106-loss season in 2002. The KC skipper said that while Milwaukee had a lot of very good prospects (Prince Fielder, J.J. Hardy, Rickie Weeks among them), they were at lower levels of the system than the bulk of the top prospects the Royals have currently. He also mentioned that Milwaukee was unbalanced when it came to prospects, as they loaded up on power hitters and lacked in front-line pitchers. He sees a great mix of both pitchers (and power pitchers at that) and position prospects on the Royals farm.
Yost mentioned that he knew during spring training, as he took a look around the Royals’ complex in Surprise, that this is where he wanted to be long term. He mentioned that building relationships are the key ingredient to building championship ballclubs and putting the pieces together to build a champion is one of the most fun things in life to do. He plans to accomplish that here in Kansas City and to do it together with the people in the front office he’s built very strong relationships with thus far.
Moore was asked why he thought Yost was the right man to lead this club forward both in the short and long term. He responded that Yost’s leadership abilities are off the charts and his experience both in Atlanta and Milwaukee building a winner was a very important component. Moore did admit quite candidly that he had done his due diligence looking around at other managerial candidates, but he believes he found the right guy here. The communication between Moore and Yost, an extremely key component to building a winner, works very well.
The second topic was the big trade that sent outfielder Rick Ankiel and pitcher Kyle Farnsworth to the Atlanta Braves for outfielder Gregor Blanco and pitchers Jesse Chavez and Tim Collins. From all indications, the deal was finalized and approved by the commissioner’s office very close to the 3 p.m. CT deadline. Both Blanco and Chavez will join the Royals soon while Collins, a fireballing left-handed reliever, will report to Triple-A Omaha.
The 26-year-old Blanco was hitting .310 in limited time with the Braves this season and made his debut in 2008, posting a good rookie campaign with Atlanta in which he finished with a .366 on-base percentage. Royals GM Dayton Moore compared the speedy outfielder to Mitch Maier, in that he can play all three outfield positions well and can handle the bat. He likes the fact that the club controls Blanco for four more seasons so the team will have a chance to evaluate him as they move forward.
Chavez is 26. He is a right-handed reliever with a very good arm who has been inconsistent for the past three seasons in the big leagues with the Pirates and Braves. Chavez was traded this offseason for former Rays second baseman Akinori Iwamura and then for All-Star closer Rafael Soriano. The California native will join the Royals bullpen.
Finally, 20-year-old left-hander Tim Collins has had a whirlwind month of July. He was first a key part of the July 14 trade that sent shortstop Alex Gonzalez to Atlanta and shortstop Yunel Escobar to Toronto. Small in stature at 5-foot-7, the southpaw has a well above-average fastball and an overhand curve that he has employed to post a 2.29 ERA and 87 strikeouts in just 51.0 innings at the Double-A level in 2010. Moore compared Collins to closer Billy Wagner, who currently has 409 saves in the Majors. The Royals GM told the media that his scouts have indicated to him Collins has a chance to be a contributor in the big league bullpen as early as next season.
Here’s what the manager had to say before Wednesday’s game:
On Victor Marte…
Having just sent Marte to AAA Omaha, Yost said the pitcher needs to work on his command. Yost does like Marte’s durability, however, which allows him to pitch consecutive days. The KC manager also mentioned Marte has good stuff, but just doesn’t change speeds enough yet.
On Wilson Betemit…
Yost thinks Betemit has done a nice job at third base, but also said first base is probably the player’s best position.
On the depth of a team…
According to Yost, championship teams essentially have two pitching staffs, which he claimed is what the Royals are working towards and is the team’s goal.
On preventing injuries…
Yost said there is no way to eliminate or limit injuries. However, he did say that he tries to use common sense and keep an eye on players before they break down. He said it’s important to know which players are prone to injuries and to give guys a day off when needed. Yost also pointed out that the club focuses a lot on hydration.
On Kyle Farnsworth…
To put it shortly, Farnsworth is feeling better and is ready to go today after exiting last night’s contest with a hamstring cramp.
Georgia on my mind
Yost thinks it will be fun to play in Atlanta and looks forward to seeing his former boss, Bobby Cox. Yost spoke very highly of the Braves manager, saying that Cox is a very special person who doesn’t really even compare to anyone else.
Hey now, you’re an all-star
Having been to four All-Star games himself, Yost thinks the 2012 All-Star game will be a wonderful time that all of Kansas City can enjoy. He believes that a top-notch ballpark like Kauffman will without a doubt be the perfect venue for such a once in a lifetime experience–both for the spectators and the players.
Get your roll on
Yost also discussed the bullpen’s improvements, which he credits to the players’ confidence in and understanding of their rolls. He is especially pleased with Kyle Farnsworth who has pitched “spectacular” and has been on a “real nice run.” Yost would, however, like to get Joakim Soria in more games.
Hurt so good
Gil Meche is making progress and threw 10-15 pitches off the mound for the first time since being put on the DL due to bursitis in his pitching shoulder. Additionally, Luke Hochevar, who was placed on the 15-day DL retroactive to June 12, feels much better and was symptom free yesterday.
Meet Mr. Lerew
The mystery surrounding Thursday’s starter against the Boston Red Sox is officially over. Say hello to #54 Anthony Lerew, previously the ace of the Double-A affiliate Northwest Arkansas Naturals. Lerew, 26, has pitched sparingly in three previous seasons with the Atlanta Braves compiling a 0-2 record with an 8.31 ERA. He was signed by the Royals in Spring Training and collected a 10-6 record while pitching for Northwest Arkansas and then went 2-0 in the playoffs for the Naturals. What can we expect from Mr. Lerew? Manager Trey Hillman says he hears good things about Anthony. “I’ll be honest, I have not even seen him pitch to a live batter, nor have I seen him even throw a bullpen session, but I hear good things about him. He is a big, strong kid who has good command and solid stuff. Anthony has experience in the big leagues which is important. It will be interesting, and as you see him for the first time, I will be doing the same.”
LHP Dusty Hughes-Feeling better, will be missing Thursday’s scheduled start but plans on a bullpen session. If and when he returns, look for him to return to the bullpen.
RHP Juan Cruz-Off the DL should be available as soon as tomorrow for the final game of the series against the Boston Red Sox.
LHP John Bale-Has been throwing batting practice, multiple bullpen sessions are in order leading him to eventually throw to live batting. Hillman and the club continue to be very cautious with this lefty reliever, so there is not a guarantee he will pitch again this season.
RHP Kyle Farnsworth-Continues to be suffering from a sore lower shoulder (back), team is hoping to use his services before the end of the season, but again the cautious approach is being taken with Kyle.
LHP Bruce Chen-Done for the season and put on 60 day DL with torn left oblique muscle.
Tony Pena Jr…the pitcher
Royals shortstop Tony Pena Jr. is in the process of attempting to become a Major League pitcher. He is working with pitching coach Bob McClure to see if this conversion to pitcher is a realistic possibility. “I have a sense he is in to it, I asked him and he said he is all for it. I think he is young enough that if this does not work out, he still has the years to work on his primary position and work on becoming a better baseball player,” said Manager Trey Hillman. “He has three pitches at the moment, a fastball, a slurve (slider/curveball), and a slight change-up. Tony is going to be going through some bullpen sessions coming up and we are looking for him to get some action down in Arizona in the near future.”
Royals pitcher Kyle Farnsworth had another promising bullpen session yesterday and is heading to Triple-A Affiliate Omaha to get some innings under him. He will be pitching (1.0 IP) on Tuesday, resting on Wednesday, and is yet to be determined how much he will be used on Thursday. Gil Meche threw another bullpen session yesterday, apparently it went fine, but he will be continuing his bullpen sessions when the team heads to Baltimore. A timetable for Gil has not been established as of yet.
Jose on the sidelines
Royals outfielder Jose Guillen has been put on the 15-Day Disabled List with an LCL tear in his right knee. Apparently, while preparing for his first at-bat of the game Wednesday night against the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim, Guillen felt a pop in his right knee. According to Manager Trey Hillman, “At the moment, it is 4-6 weeks with the possibility of taking as long as 8-10. It might need to be surgically repaired, but we are looking into getting a second opinion on the knee and we’ll go from there.”
Not too much new to report from the Royals dugout today, except that Royals pitchers Gil Meche and Kyle Farnsworth both threw off the mound prior to the game today. They will be closely monitored, evaluated and a determination will be made on their readiness as well as progress from their prospective injuries.
Here’s a look at Royals birthdays for April:
Third base coach Dave Owen (below) will be 51 on April 25. Renee Zellweger turns 40 on this day, which is also the 77th birthday for the Meadowlark Lemon, the “Clown Prince” of Harlem Globetrotter fame.
Royals Hall of Famer Amos Otis turns 62 on April 26, which is also celebrated by Carol Burnett (76).
Pitching coach Bob McClure rounds out our birthday list on April 29. Comedian Jerry Seinfeld will turn 55, while Andre Agassi, Master P, and Uma Thurman will celebrate their 39th birthday.
9,500 fans flocked to the Overland Park Convention Center for the 2009 Royals FanFest. The main stage was home to a variety of question and answer sessions. Let’s take a look at a few of the highlights:
General Manager Dayton Moore explains his thoughts on the 2009 Royals to Ryan Lefebvre and Tim Scott. At right, Ryan interviews the newest Royals. (Left to right – Kyle Farnsworth, Mike Jacobs, Coco Crisp, Willie Bloomquist)
The broadcasters held court on Saturday for some unscripted banter. Mike Swanson, VP of Communications and Broadcasting for the Royals, chats with Denny Matthews as Ryan Lefebvre, Steve Stewart, and Joel Goldberg look on.
One of Sunday’s most popular events was the Kids Only Press Conference. David DeJesus, Alex Gordon, and Willie Bloomquist took some tough questions from the youngsters in the crowd.
Fans at the main stage took home some new Royals gear as members of the K Crew tossed items to the crowd before and after each event.
FanFest is just four days away, and we have big news to report! You can meet the newest members of the team this weekend at the Overland Park Convention Center. It was just announced that Willie Bloomquist, Coco Crisp, Kyle Farnsworth, and Mike Jacobs will all be in attendance!
Visit the FanFest page on royals.com where you can purchase tickets and read about all of the activities.
Photo: Tony Gutierrez/AP