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Royals continue to pick up arms


Kansas City Royals hats & merchandise As the Royals work to organize a contending team, it comes as no surprise that the franchise focuses on its pitching staff.

They obtained Ervin Santana from the Angels and retained Jeremy Guthrie with a three-year $25 million dollar contract. In December, Kansas City acquired Wade Davis and James Shields from the Tampa Bay Rays in exchange for Wil Myers, Jake Odorizzi and two minor league players.

Since Dayton Moore was named the Royals General Manger in 2006, he has dealt with pitchers' struggles on and off the mound. Moore has watched top prospects turn lackluster such as Brian Bannister who went from starting on 2008 Opening Day to disappearing in the Japanese Leagues. He has suffered through embarrassment when Cy Young award winner Zach Greinke made adverse comments about the team to the press; and he has dealt with a long list of injuries-some career ending as was the case of Gil Meche .

Now with closer Joakim Soria signing with the Rangers, and Bruce Chen and Luke Hochevers' roles to be determined, Moore looks to start fresh in 2013.

As Kansas City develops this new rotation, the question looming is who will fill the fifth spot?

With Danny Duffy and Felipe Paulino both coming off Tommy John Surgery last season, the odds are against either of them starting in the first half of the 2013 season. Bruce Chen signed a $9 million contract through 2013, but rumors abound that the Royals are shopping him to free up payroll. Luke Hochever, who had pitched solidly for the Royals early last season, finished the 2012 season with a disappointing 8-16 record and a 5.73 ERA.

With fewer than 90 days to go until Opening Day, it is clear the Royals' pitching staff is still a work in progress.



By: Karen L. Willdermood Staff Writer