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Bukaty: Reviews Royals Draft

Nate Bukaty reviews the Royals draft, and likes the direction they took with pitching.

        If you spent any time listening to the Border Patrol on Monday morning, you can probably guess that I’m a fan of the direction the Royals took during their first day of the 2018 draft. With five picks, and more allotment money at their disposal than any other team in this year’s draft, the Royals needed to “make hay while the sun shines” so to speak. This is a vitally important draft as the Royals look to build the next wave of prospects that will make the Royals competitive again.

            The Royals’ farm system is in desperate need of pitching, which is a refrain that I repeated several times on the morning of Day One of the draft. There is a nucleus of position player talent at the A-ball level, with the likes of Khalil Lee (with an OBP of .420, 10 steals out of 11 attempts, and a rocket for an outfield arm), Catcher MJ Melendez (Slugging .544 at 19 years old in low-A ball), Seuly Matais (another 19-year-old, with 17 homers in just 150 AB’s at low-A.)

            By selecting college pitchers with all five of their day-one picks, the Royals made it clear that they are looking to add pitching prospects who can blend right in with these exciting position players. Dayton more says this was all a part of the approach going into Day One of the draft, “It just felt that these were the best available pitchers for us, and we wanted to make a concerted effort on getting some college pitching we felt had high ceiling and that could move quickly.” It’s a tricky approach, trying to line up an entire group of prospects who can move through the system in sync with one another, and then hopefully be ready to win at the Big League level together. But it’s something that this Royals front office has proven that they’ve been able to execute in the past.

            There are a couple of things to keep in mind when it comes to these five college arms: 1) Not all college pitchers are created equal when it comes to their upcoming minor league progression. Some of these guys will be more “Major League ready” than others. Granted, all five of these pitchers competed a big universities, which should bode well for the potential for at least some of these guys to skip the rookie ball step, and jump right into A-ball along with those aforementioned position players. Still, some of these pitchers will be able to move more quickly than others. 2) Some of these pitching prospects might be able to help the Royals without ever pitching a single day in the Majors for Kansas City. Remember that the 2015 Royals acquired some of their most important pieces by trading away former college pitchers whom they had drafted, like Sean Manaea, Brandon Finnegan, and Cody Reed (drafted out of community college.)

            As for this group of five pitchers, obviously the first pick, Brady Singer, will get most of the attention. MLB Pipeline had him listed as their number two overall prospect for this year’s draft, yet somehow he was still available when the Royals drafted at 18. He’s got an electric  mid-90’s fastball, and a devastating slider. He throws from a lower arm slot than is typical for right-handed starters, so it will be interesting to see if his third pitch develops enough to keep left-handed hitters honest. He’s a feisty competitor, who has a strong dislike of inclement weather: https://ftw.usatoday.com/2017/06/florida-pitcher-brady-singer-tantrum-tirade-rain-delay-wake-forest-super-regional-college-baseball-video. You can view this tirade through one of two prisms: either he A) is a nasty competitor who simply demands the ball every fifth day, or B) he’s emotionally fragile, and gets himself worked up over outside influences which he can’t control. Time (and his pitching record) will tell.

            Singer is considered by many to be very close to Major League ready, so it will be interesting to see at what level the Royals choose to start Singer’s pro career, and how quickly he moves.

            As we all know, when it comes to the baseball draft even more than in other sports, these pics are all a bit of a guessing game. I, for one, like the fact that the Royals are throwing numbers at their pitching problem. Dayton Moore says “each one of these guys have something left ceiling-wise,” which means he believes there is some potential start power in this group. It’s been pointed out that Moore’s regime does not have the best track record when it comes to drafting and developing starting pitching, which is a fair criticism. But I would counter that the Royals have had success in flipping their pitching prospects for value at the major league level, and moreover, just because you’ve failed at something in the past is no excuse to stop trying at that endeavor in the future. The next youth movement by the Royals will not likely look exactly like the last one. Having young, controllable pitching at your disposal is a major benefit. The Royals made a bold attempt at acquired such a strength with Monday’s draft. Their ability to return to the post season in a few years might well depend on how successful they were on this day.

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Program’s Big 12, SEC Awards

Read Soren Petro’s Associated Press ballot for Big 12 Awards, and also The Program’s rankings of coaches in the Big 12 and SEC.

2017-18 AP ALL-BIG 12 MEN’S BASKETBALL BALLOT:

 NAME OF VOTER:  Soren Petro

FIRST TEAM
1) Trae Young, Oklahoma

2) Devonte’ Graham, Kansas

3) Jevon Carter, West Virginia

4) Dean Wade, Kansas St.

5) Mohamed Bamba, Texas

SECOND TEAM
1) Barry Brown, Kansas St.

2) Keenan Evans, Texas Tech

3) Sviatoslav Mykhailuk, Kansas

4) Udoka Azubuike, Kansas

5) Sagaba Konate, West Virginia

COACH OF THE YEAR:Bill Self, Kansas

PLAYER OF THE YEAR: Trae Young, Oklahoma

NEWCOMER OF THE YEAR (Freshman or player in 1st season w/Big 12 team):
Trae Young, Oklahoma

BIG 12 COACHES

ROB

  1. BILL SELF- KANSAS
  2. BOB HUGGINS- WEST VIRGINIA
  3. CHRIS BEARD- TEXAS TECH
  4. LON KRUGER- OKLAHOMA
  5. JAMIE DIXON- TCU
  6. SCOTT DREW- BAYLOR
  7. BRUCE WEBER- KANSAS STATE
  8. SHAKA SMART- TEXAS
  9. MIKE BOYNTON- OKLAHOMA STATE
  10. STEVE PROHM- IOWA STATE

 

SEC COACHES LIST

  1. JOHN CALIPARI- KENTUCKY
  2. RICK BARNES- TENNESSEE
  3. MIKE WHITE- FLORIDA
  4. BRUCE PEARL- AUBURN
  5. BEN HOWLAND- MISSISSIPPI STATE
  6. MIKE ANDERSON- ARKANSAS
  7. CUONZO MARTIN- MIZZOU
  8. FRANK MARTIN- SOUTH CAROLINA
  9. BILLY KENNEDY- TEXAS A&M
  10. AVERY JOHNSON- ALABAMA
  11. BRYCE DREW- VANDY
  12. WILL WADE- LSU
  13. MARK FOX- GEORGIA

 

BIG 12 COACHES

SOREN

  1. BILL SELF- KANSAS
  2. BOB HUGGINS- WEST VIRGINIA
  3. LON KRUGER- OKLAHOMA
  4. SCOTT DREW- BAYLOR
  5. JAMIE DIXON- TCU
  6. CHRIS BEARD- TEXAS TECH
  7. BRUCE WEBER- KANSAS STATE
  8. SHAKA SMART- TEXAS
  9. STEVE PROHM- IOWA STATE
  10. MIKE BOYNTON- OKLAHOMA STATE

 

SEC COACHES LIST

  1. JOHN CALIPARI- KENTUCKY
  2. MIKE WHITE- FLORIDA
  3. RICK BARNES- TENNESSEE
  4. FRANK MARTIN- SOUTH CAROLINA
  5. BRUCE PEARL- AUBURN
  6. BEN HOWLAND- MISSISSIPPI STATE
  7. MIKE ANDERSON- ARKANSAS
  8. CUONZO MARTIN- MIZZOU
  9. BILLY KENNEDY- TEXAS A&M
  10. BRYCE DREW- VANDY
  11. AVERY JOHNSON- ALABAMA
  12. MARK FOX- GEORGIA
  13. WILL WADE- LSU

 

BIG 12 COACHES

KURTIS

  1. BILL SELF- KANSAS
  2. BOB HUGGINS- WEST VIRGINIA
  3. LON KRUGER- OKLAHOMA
  4. SCOTT DREW- BAYLOR
  5. JAMIE DIXON- TCU
  6. CHRIS BEARD- TEXAS TECH
  7. BRUCE WEBER- KANSAS STATE
  8. SHAKA SMART- TEXAS
  9. MIKE BOYNTON- OKLAHOMA STATE
  10. STEVE PROHM- IOWA STATE

 

SEC COACHES LIST

  1. JOHN CALIPARI- KENTUCKY
  2. RICK BARNES- TENNESSEE
  3. BRUCE PEARL- AUBURN
  4. FRANK MARTIN- SOUTH CAROLINA
  5. BEN HOWLAND- MISSISSIPPI STATE
  6. CUONZO MARTIN- MIZZOU
  7. MIKE WHITE- FLORIDA
  8. MIKE ANDERSON- ARKANSAS
  9. BILLY KENNEDY- TEXAS A&M
  10. AVERY JOHNSON- ALABAMA
  11. BRYCE DREW- VANDY
  12. WILL WADE- LSU
  13. MARK FOX- GEORGIA
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Chiefs Compared to Super Bowl Teams

Kurtis Seaboldt broke down how the 2017 Chiefs compare to the last 10 years of Super Bowl teams (winners and losers) and where they rank statistically in the major categories through the first nine weeks.

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Petro’s AP College Football Ballot

Check out Soren Petro’s ballot for the Associated Press College Football Top 25!

Petro’s AP Top 25 Ballot

9/10/17

 

  1. Alabama
  2. Clemson
  3. Oklahoma
  4. Penn St.
  5. Washington
  6. USC
  7. Florida St.
  8. Ohio St.
  9. Wisconsin
  10. Oklahoma St.
  11. Michigan
  12. Kansas St.
  13. Georgia
  14. Miami
  15. Auburn
  16. TCU
  17. Louisville
  18. LSU
  19. Florida
  20. Washington St.
  21. Oregon
  22. Virginia Tech
  23. UCLA
  24. Stanford
  25. Tennessee

 

  1. Notre Dame
  2. South Florida
  3. Utah
  4. Georgia Tech
  5. Nebraska
  6. West Virginia
  7. South Carolina
  8. Colorado
  9. Houston
  10. Texas A&M
  11. Mississippi St.
  12. Duke
  13. Maryland
  14. San Diego St.
  15. Iowa
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The Feud

Join The Feud on The Program, with Soren Petro and 41 Action News’ Mick Shaffer.

Petro’s Preseason College Football Ballot

By Soren Petro

Petro’s Preseason AP Top 25 Ballot

8/7/17

 

  1. Florida St.
  2. Alabama
  3. Clemson
  4. Ohio St.
  5. Oklahoma
  6. Penn St.
  7. Washington
  8. USC
  9. Wisconsin
  10. Oklahoma St.
  11. Auburn
  12. Florida
  13. Kansas St.
  14. Georgia
  15. Michigan
  16. Miami
  17. Louisville
  18. TCU
  19. LSU
  20. Stanford
  21. Washington St.
  22. North Carolina St.
  23. Oregon
  24. Texas
  25. Notre Dame

 

  1. Virginia Tech
  2. South Florida
  3. BYU
  4. Tennessee
  5. UCLA
  6. Nebraska
  7. Northwestern
  8. Houston
  9. Texas A&M
  10. West Virginia

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Petro’s Preseason All America Team

 

OFFENSE

 

QB       Baker Mayfield – Oklahoma

RB       Derrius Guice – LSU

RB       Nick Chubb – Georgia

OT       Connor Williams – Texas

G          Quenton Nelson – Notre Dame

C          Frank Ragnow – Arkansas

G          Cody O’Connell – Washington St.

OT       Mike McGlinchey – Notre Dame

TE       Mark Andrews – Oklahoma

WR      James Washington – Oklahoma St.

WR      Courtland Sutton – SMU

K          Caniel Carlson – Auburn

AP       Quadree Henderson – Pitt

 

 

DEFENSE

 

DE       Bradley Chubb – North Carolina St.

DT       Christian Wilkins – Clemson

DT       Dexter Lawrence – Clemson

DE       Trenton Thompson – Georgia

LB       Arden Key – LSU

LB       Malik Jefferson – Texas

LB       Harold Landry – Boston College

CB       Tarvarus McFadden – Florida St.

S          Derwin James – Florida St.

S          Minkah Fitzpatrick – Alabama

CB       Kevin Tolliver II – LSU

P          J.K. Scott – Alabama

 

 

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Watch Interviews From Tahoe

Check out interviews by Soren Petro with celebrities at the American Century Championship, from Lake Tahoe.

Ray Romano with Soren Petro

Herm Edwards with Soren Petro

Soren Petro with Josh Beckett

John O'Hurley with Soren Petro

Jonathan Thomas with Soren

Sebastian Janikowski with Soren Petro

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One Month, and More to Come

By Riley Gates, Sports Radio 810

One month. That’s how long I’ve been at my internship at 810-WHB. Some internships don’t start until the beginning of June, but I wanted to get to work as soon as I could with this one. And man, I sure am glad I did.

In just one month, I’ve learned so much. For starters, running a board during a show has been one of the more unique things I’ve done in my life. The first day I watched the show, running the board seemed like learning a new language. There are so many buttons and responsibilities for a job that — in my opinion — doesn’t get proper recognition.

Fast-forward to today and I feel that I could handle running the board for an entire show. Those who have taught me the ins and outs of the job have done great and given me that confidence.

Along with what I’ve learned about the radio business — a side that I had not yet been a part of in this profession — I’ve had some pretty great experiences, too.

Prior to this summer, I’ve covered Kansas State sports for two years. I’m comfortable on that beat and don’t have any nerves working it. But professional sports are something I hadn’t yet experienced until this past month.

My first day on the job? Go to Kauffman Stadium — a place I’ve enjoyed countless times as a fan — and cover the Royals vs. the Yankees. Stand in the dugout and talk to Ned Yost. Just last week I covered the Royals again, this time with access to the clubhouse. Interview the same Royals players that I’ve watched for years on TV. That’s a feeling that, no matter how many different beats I work on in my life, I’ll never forget.

Not far from Kauffman sits the Chiefs’ practice facility where, for the last few weeks, team OTAs have been taking place. I’ve developed a working relationship with football legend Bill Snyder and have interviewed many K-State football players, some who have gone on to the NFL. But never before this summer had I interviewed a current NFL player or coach. Now I have.

Andy Reid, Alex Smith and more, will take the field on multiple Sundays this fall and I’ll get to tell people I interviewed them.

Now, the way I write this piece sounds like I’ve been on an extended Make-A-Wish experience and won’t get to do this stuff in my future. If I’m fortunate, I’ll experience many more things like this in my life. And no, I won’t write stuff about everything I get to experience. But this has been a fun and eye-opening month. There’s so much out there in sports media that, hopefully, I will encounter in my life.

Until then, though, I will continue to learn and soak up these opportunities that this internship is offering me. It’s been a great month and there’s only more where it came from.