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Rival Roundup, Vol. 46: Royal Treatment

Kansas City keeps trucking as most of the Central sleeps.

Colorado Rockies v San Diego Padres Photo by Sean M. Haffey/Getty Images


  • The Royals have decided they’re going to be the Dodgers of the American League Central, in that nobody else seems to be doing jack-all, and Kansas City continues making moves despite some of the more major markets not having been set. This week alone, they doled out contracts to free-agent pitchers Seth Lugo and Michael Wacha.
  • And they weren’t done, either; also on the 15th, they signed outfielder Hunter Renfroe to the major-league roster, among a big scoop of other...well, scoops, throughout the week. Peep in particular reliever Will Smith and his noted championship streak.
  • The pitching in particular catches my eye; for the last couple of years of this Royal rebuild, we’ve heard that the Kansas City pitching pipeline is nothing to sneeze at — but while they’ve called up their fair share of in-house arms, none of them have hit in the way a small-market rebuild requires. Are these Lugo/Wacha signings merely deadline-bait deals like the Aroldis Chapman contract? Remains to be seen. But the new front office, led by J.J. Piccolo, is at the very least making moves.
  • Yes, that’s right — the Detroit Tigers are up there, too. Pundits have been tapping the Tigers for their breakout season for quite some time now; be it the A.J. Hinch acquisition, or the Javier Baez signing, or the last few waves of prospects, there’s been reason to be excited about Detroit. However, even last year’s second-place finish only generated a 78-win team. Will Detroit’s moves this week help usher them back to .500 in 2024?

Looking for actual, honest-to-God, Twins-related news? Stay patient, folks... and keep those rivals rounding.