Kansas City Royals 2019 Season Preview: Fantasy Analysis
Kansas City Royals 2019 Season Preview
2018 Record: 58 – 104
Projected 2019 Record: 71 – 91
2018 Recap & 2019 Team Outlook
The Royals finished dead last in the division last season, losing 104 games. They project to finish second to last, just a shade ahead of Detroit. Kansas City has a depleted roster, and it is hard to believe this team won a World Series just a few years ago. They lost Salvador Perez for the year before the season started. This is a tough loss for the Royals.
Pitching is going to be a major issue for the Royals, and the bullpen that once was is now just filling in for even worse starting pitching. We do have Adalberto Mondesi to watch, who projects for elite SB skills and above average power. This team is going to run, with Whit Merrifield and Billy Hamilton also in the lineup.
This team is going to project close to 100 losses, and they are one of the reasons why this division goes down as the worst in baseball right now.
Salvador Perez needing Tommy John just before the season started was a huge loss for the Royals, leaving behind a bat desperately needed in the middle of the order. It is going to be a tough go for the Royals offense, but the speed might help things out a bit.
It is unclear how the AL Central has three bad rotations, with the Royals being one of them. They don’t have an arm projected under a four ERA. It is going to be hard to stay competitive with a rotation like this. The Royals should desperately be looking to add pitching over the next season or two.
The Royals got their ring, but the before and after has not been pretty. Going through another rebuild is tough, but they do have some players that will keep this team entertaining to the above average fan.
2019 Starting Pitchers
It is another rocky rotation for the Royals. Brad Keller is their Opening Day starter, with Jake Junis following. You know your rotation needs work, when you went out and reached for Homer Bailey to be in your rotation.
There isn’t a name that projects for under a 4.50 ERA, and nobody that registers for a strikeout per inning guy. Jake Junis has the best chance of racking up strikeouts because he is slider happy, but his blowups negate a lot of that strikeout success.
Jorge Lopez and Bailey are other options in the rotation. They are more filling in as Danny Duffy went down early with an injury.
2019 Relief Pitchers
Brad Boxberger is going to get a chance to rack up some saves, but they are also going to use Wily Peralta for saves as well. This isn’t going to be great for fantasy, but you have two closing options that can get the job done. Unfortunately, they might not have a ton of chances for wins.
Ian Kennedy will make some starts, but his role is in the bullpen for the moment. He has been a below average starter the last few seasons. Even pitching in an environment that benefits pitching, Kennedy has struggled with the long ball.
Jake Diekman is a middle relief arm that possesses the best chances of having a strong ERA. Outside of that there are not a lot of notable names.
Despite a pitching staff that has been all over the place, the solidity of the Reds lineup seems to remain consistent year in and year out. That starts with Reds veteran and leader Joey Votto. Votto will be playing in his 13th MLB season in 2019 and is still going strong. He has shown few signs of slowing down and continues to be an all-star level first baseman.
Another important name is Scooter Gennett. Since joining the Reds in 2017, his bat has exploded, and he has proved his worth in the lineup as a serious offensive power. However, he recently had a freak groin injury in a spring training game. It is now official that he will be missing a minimum of 2 months of the season and will likely not return until June. Filling the space he leaves in the lineup will be tough.
Yasiel Puig always seems to be in the headlines. The “Wild Horse” provides another strong bat in the lineup and an even stronger arm in the outfield. He hasn’t quite lived up to his original expectations from when he was a prospect, but still proves to be an influential force in the lineup.
Another exciting Reds youngster is Jesse Winker. He has shown not only an ability to get on base but also exceptional base running ability. He even throws in a bit of power. Look for him to be batting at the top of the lineup.
And I guess we have to talk about Matt Kemp as well. While it is likely Kemp won’t be an everyday player, he is still a strong bat and will be important in pinch hitting positions. A few seasons ago, it was thought that his glory days from 2011-2012 were over. However, he had a revival with the Dodgers last season, batting .290 and knocking in 85 RBIs.
Eugenio Suarez, an all-star last season, has another incredibly strong bat as does Scott Schebler. Keep an eye out for big seasons from both of them as well.
Projected Starting Lineup
- Adalberto Mondesi
- Whit Merrifield
- Alex Gordon
- Ryan O’Hearn
- Jorge Soler
- Hunter Dozier
- Chris Owings
- Billy Hamilton
- Martin Maldonado
Noteworthy Fantasy Pitchers
Noteworthy Fantasy Hitters
Adalberto Mondesi – Adalberto Mondesi is an intriguing young prospect, and we get him to be very fantasy viable early on. He already stole 30+ bases in about half a season. He projects for over 50 this year, with 20+ HR. He is an excellent source of speed and power. His plate skills will need some work, resulting in a poor OBP, but everything else is there to draft him as a top 50 player.