Just for your information, I have written fairly extensive prospect previews on local baseball analyst Greg Schaum's website, Royals Prospects, which has a fairly self-explanatory title. I provided short video clips and pictures for this site last month and I look forward to contributing with daily Minor League game (and prospect) reports, as well. Here is the link.
Here is a sample:
"RP Victor Marte: 3-5, 2.24 ERA in 64.1 IP for AA Northwest Arkansas. He’s a hard-throwing right-handed Dominican pitcher who is hardly young (at age 29) but a bit raw. He struggled with control and command in his brief stint in Kansas City last year. With his frame and stuff, he reminds me a bit of Robinson Tejeda, though I’m not sure their stamina is comparable."
Furthermore, follow Game previews on http://leftofthefoulpole.com/
Now, onward to tonight's game, our offense looked anemic at times but it was nice to see the power of Rick Ankiel and Alberto Callaspo manifest in dramatic fashion, enabling the Royals to even the series with Detroit and perhaps reach .500 for the last time this season (though I'm hoping against reason that they finish significantly higher than my projected total of 67 wins this year). An encouraging, efficient outing by Luke Hochevar, as well, though I wonder if he should have finished the eighth inning, as his pitch count was still below 90. I'm normally an advocate of the 4+ out save, but I'd have to think Soria's stamina at least remains tolerable enough when facing Miguel Cabrera, who tied the game with that foul-pole drilling home run in right field.
Now, as for an analysis for Opening Day, what else can be criticized that hasn't already been? As Robert Ford mentioned on the air following the game and multiple times last year, third base coaches typically should not be noticed. Dave Owen almost got our runner thrown out again in the 11th inning on Game 2. Well, he certainly got Jason Kendall tossed out on game one. Has anyone seen Royals Review poster AxMxDx's windmill post on Royals Review? I'm hoping our third base coach struggles, misplays on routine popups on the infield, and bunting in the first inning aren't recurring trends this year, as well. I'm also hoping our bullpen at least shows some semblance of competence. Unfortunately, we have three guys who are probably fringe relievers and sixth or seventh relievers on good teams on our current roster in Dusty Hughes, Kyle Farnsworth, John Parrish (even as a "LOOGY"), Dusty Hughes, and Luis Mendoza. I hope I don't long for the days of Tony Cogan and Matt Whisenant come April 20, but I'm afraid it's very probable.
Stay tuned for more updates to come and...seriously....I recommend reading that Minor League post. I devoted quite a spell of effort in it and, frankly, I liked my Victor Marte-Robinson Tejeda "comp."