The Kansas City Royals are a relatively recent team, being founded in 1969, and yet have been relatively successful. It only took the Royals three years to have a winning season, and then in their eighth year they claimed the AL West division and ran to the ALCS in three straight seasons. In 1980 the Royals finally claimed their first AL Pennant but fell 4-2 to the Philadelphia Phillies. Their second AL Pennant came in 1985, but this time they were able to taste triumph as they took the World Series 4-3 over St. Louis thanks to brilliant play from George Brett, Steve Balboni, and Charlie Leibrandt.
With their first title in their pocket Kansas City seemed to drift off to sleep. They missed the playoffs in 1986 and didn’t even finish the year above .500. They wouldn’t return to the playoffs until a wildcard birth in 2014, but once they did return they remembered how to win. The Royals surprised many by taking that wildcard spot and spinning it into another AL Pennant but came up short in game 7 against the San Francisco Giants. The next year they would not be denied though. An AL Central division title turned into another AL Pennant and a second World Series title. With that one done the Royals have dipped into another hibernation period and have not had a winning season since. Can you take over and lift them back into the playoffs and maybe secure a third World Series triumph?
*All stats correct at time of writing
MLB The Show 19 does not provide a team OVR like other games but instead gives each team a ranking within the league. This is useful as it shows you clearly just where a team sits within MLB, but it can be a frustration that you can’t see any gulf in class between the 5th and 6th ranked teams.
The Royals enter Franchise Mode ranked a woeful 26th. Their strengths lie in their 1st ranked speed and 6th ranked defense, but their biggest weaknesses are horrific. Their pitching ranks 28th and both their power and contact sit 27th.
Financially the Royals are not in an awful place. Their team budget of $128.5 million is not much, but it should be enough to build a solid roster if you spend wisely and use the farm system to its maximum potential. Who are the players you should be looking to build around in KC?
Whit Merrifield, Second Base (90 OVR)
Contract: 5 years/$26.5 million
Secondary Position: 1B, 3B, LF, CF, RF
Hitter Tendency: Whole Field
Best Stats: Contact vs L (98), Durability (97), Clutch (83), Reaction (79), Speed (79), Fielding (76), Vision (76), Contact vs R (75)
Whit Merrifield was a ninth-round pick for the Royals in 2010 and got his MLB debut with them in 2016, playing 81 games with a .283 average, 2 homers, and plus-defense. Merrifield was an everyday player in 2017 and found his feet, hitting 19 homers, stealing 34 bases and hitting a .288 average. In 2018 Merrifield led MLB with 192 hits and 45 steals while also hitting .304 and playing good defense again.
In The Show 19 Merrifield is an all round player. He has good contact skill (75/98), can field well (76), and has nice speed (79). His positional flexibility is very useful and he is durable (97) enough to play every game. He’s also good in the clutch (83) and has nice vision (76) at the plate.
Salvador Perez, Catcher (82 OVR)
Contract: 3 years/$26.3 million
Secondary Position: 1B
Hitter Tendency: Pull Hitter
Best Stats: Power vs L (82), Durability (79), Arm Accuracy (76), Arm Strength (72), Blocking (70), Fielding (69), Vision (67), Power vs R (66)
Salvador Perez signed as an international free agent with the Royals at the age of 16 and made his minor league debut in 2007 before arriving in the Majors in 2011. He played 39 games that season with a stellar .331 average and three homers. By 2013 he was the first choice catcher for the Royals and got his first All-Star appearance and won the gold glove, his first of 5. Perez has developed into a nice power hitter, mashing 22, 27, & 27 in the last three years, but had to sacrifice a bit of average to do it.
In The Show 19 Perez is perhaps underrated. He has nice power at the plate (66/82) and solid durability (79) for a catcher. His fielding is ok (69), with his arm accuracy (76) the biggest asset of his play behind the plate. His contact skills are good for a catcher (60/59) too.
Brad Keller, Starting Pitcher (77 OVR)
Contract: 1 year/$575,000 + 1 year renew + 3 year arbitration
Pitches: 4-Seam Fastball, Slider, 2-Seam Fastball, Changeup
Best Stats: HR/9 (83), Arm Strength (78), Velocity (77), Stamina (72), Break (70), H/9 (64)
Brad Keller was an eighth-round draft pick for the Arizona Diamondbacks in 2013 but was claimed by the Cincinnati Reds in the Rule 5 draft in 2017 and traded to the Royals. Keller got his MLB debut with the Royals in 2018 making 20 starts with a 3.28 ERA over 118 innings.
In The Show 19 Keller has ok stamina (72) and reasonable velocity (77) and break (70). He can limit home runs well (83) and is solid enough in the clutch (57). His control (50) isn’t great for a starter, but he’s young and could well improve.
Kansas City Royals MLB Roster
There can be variations in player OVR from save to save within The Show 19. However, these variations to not affect the underlying stats. We will start our look at the Royals MLB roster with the position players and then the pitchers.
|Player||OVR||Age||Position||Bat Hand||Best Contact||Best Power||Fielding||Speed|
|Whit Merrifield||90||30||2B||R||98 (L)||48 (L)||76||79|
|Billy Hamilton||84||28||CF||S||64 (R)||36 (L)||79||97|
|Salvador Perez||82||28||C||R||60 (R)||82 (L)||69||18|
|Adalberto Mondesi||80||23||SS||S||68 (R)||52 (L)||74||94|
|Martin Maldonado||74||32||C||R||49 (L)||57 (R)||86||3|
|Chris Owings||74||27||CF||R||71 (L)||43 (R)||73||69|
|Ryan O’Hearn||73||25||1B||L||72 (R)||76 (R)||51||47|
|Brian Goodwin||72||28||CF||L||62 (L)||62 (R)||55||58|
|Alex Gordon||72||35||LF||L||50 (R)||54 (R)||77||25|
|Jorge Bonifacio||72||25||RF||R||57 (R)||55 (R/L)||60||65|
|Cheslor Cuthbert||69||26||3B||R||69 (L)||46 (R/L)||61||47|
|Brett Phillips||67||24||CF||L||49 (R)||49 (R)||76||79|
|Hunter Dozier||63||27||3B||R||51 (R)||57 (R)||48||73|
The Royals MLB roster is made up of 13 position players and 12 pitchers. That is your 9-man starting lineup and a 4-man bench along with a 5-man rotation and 7-man bullpen including your closer.
There isn’t much offense in this lineup, but what there is will come from Whit Merrifield (contact L 98, contact R 75), Salvador Perez (power L 82, power R 66), and Ryan O’Hearn (power R 76, contact R 72). There is support to be had from the likes of Chris Owings (contact L 71, contact R 58) and Adalberto Mondesi (contact R 68, contact L 58). There is also extra runs in the speed of Billy Hamilton (stealing 99), Mondesi (stealing 86), and Merrifield (stealing 57).
In the field the Royals have a lot of good players. Martin Maldonado is a star behind the plate (arm strength 89, fielding 86), while the outfield is patrolled by Hamilton (fielding 79) and Alex Gordon (fielding 77).
In the starting rotation there is a general lack of talent. Brad Keller (HR/9 83, velocity 77) and Danny Duffy (velocity 78, stamina 76) are the best arms but neither should be heading up a staff. Jake Junis (break 84, stamina 80) is the #3 starter, with Ian Kennedy (break 87, stamina 80) and Heath Fillmyer (break 75, stamina 72) filling in the back end of the rotation.
The bullpen is anchored by Jake Diekman (velocity 92, break 82) and Brad Boxberger (K/9 88, break 86). Behind them there isn’t much, Kevin McCarthy (velocity 74, break 74) and Brian Flynn (HR/9 76, velocity 70) can get through an inning but the likes of Tim Hill (HR/9 72, BB/9 68) and Wily Peralta (velocity 88, stamina 56) are shaky while Erik Skoglund (stamina 68, velocity 68) is your long man.
The Show 19 has 4 lineups that you need to set. These are against right-handed pitchers with and without the DH and against left-handed pitchers with and without the DH. As the Royals are in the American League most of their games will be played with the DH.
Against righties with the DH The Show 19 puts CF Billy Hamilton at the top of the order with SS Adalberto Mondesi and 2B Whit Merrifield. C Salvador Perez hits #4 with 1B Ryan O’Hearn at #5 followed by DH Brian Goodwin, RF Jorge Bonifacio, 3B Cheslor Cuthbert, and LF Alex Gordon. Without the DH Alex Gordon drops the to the bench for Goodwin to play LF.
Against lefties with the DH Hamilton still leads off from LF, CF Chris Owings hits #2 followed by Merrifield and Perez. Goodwin hits #5, followed by Cuthbert, Bonifacio, Mondesi, and O’Hearn. Without the DH Billy Hamilton drops to the bench for Goodwin to play the field and Mondesi moves up to the lead off spot.
These lineups are ok, but we can do better
Against righties the top 3 will stay the same, but O’Hearn moves up to #4 with Perez at #5. Goodwin stays at #6 but Chris Owings is coming into 3B and will hit #7 followed by Bonifacio and Gordon. Without the DH Gordon still drops to the bench.
Against lefties Owings will play CF and lead off, followed by Merrifield and Perez. Goodwin hits #4 and then Cheslor Cuthbert coming back into the lineup at 3B and hits #5. Mondesi is next, followed by Bonifacio, Hamilton, and O’Hearn. Without the DH Hamilton drops out.
MLB The Show 19 can have a frustrating farm system. The OVR fluctuations affect Minor League players too, and also their potential which greatly affects how they will develop. Some real life prospects are also missing from the game. There are still some useful prospects in the Royals farm system though.
Jorge Lopez, Starting Pitcher (67 OVR)
Pitches: 2-Seam Fastball, Curveball, 4-Seam Fastball, Changeup, Slider
Best Stats: Velocity (79), Stamina (68), HR/9 (67), Arm Strength (64), Break (63)
Jorge Lopez was a second-round pick for the Milwaukee Brewers in 2011 and got his MLB debut with them in 2015, pitching 10 innings with a 5.40 ERA and 10 strikeouts. He missed the 2016 season and barely pitched in 2017. In 2018 he pitched 19.2 innings for the Brewers with a 2.75 ERA before being traded to Kansas and having something of an implosion, starting 7 games with a 6.35 ERA.
In The Show 19 Lopez has a good chance to be the guy that can bring improvement to the Royals rotation. He has good velocity (79) already and nice stamina (68). He has solid control (60) and ok break (63) too. He isn’t that young so improvement may be hard to come by, but he has the tools to eat up innings at a reasonable rate.
Geraldo Abreu, Starting Pitcher (66 OVR)
Pitches: 4-Seam Fastball, 12-6 Curve, Slider
Best Stats: Arm Strength (85), Velocity (78), Break (76), Stamina (71), BB/9 (71)
Geraldo Abreu is another option to improve the starting rotation. He already has reasonable stamina (71) and a good combination of velocity (78) and break (76). He has good control (55) for a young player and is reasonable in the clutch (55) too.
Jorge Soler, Right Field (66 OVR)
Secondary Position: LF, CF
Hitter Tendency: Pull Hitter
Best Stats: Discipline (83), Power vs L (70), Speed (69), Arm Strength (64), Durability (62), Power vs R (56)
Jorge Soler defected from Cuba in 2011 and signed with the Chicago Cubs in June 2012 as a free agent. He got his MLB debut with them in 2014 and hit .292 with 5 homers in his 24 games. In 2015 he played 101 games with 10 homers and a .262 average. In 2017 he moved to Kansas City and struggled mightily at the plate, hitting just .144 in 35 games and only played a bit-part in 2018.
In The Show 19 Soler could be an answer to Kansas City’s lack of power. He brings good power against all pitchers (56/70) and has good discipline at the plate (83). He has ok arm strength (64) and enough contact skill (46/55) to survive in the Majors.
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