Around the Kingdom: Billy Butler, Alex Gordon, Eric Fisher, and Jon Kempin


Aug 13, 2014; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Royals designated hitter Billy Butler (16) connects for a single in the first inning against the Oakland Athletics at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports

The Colorado Rockies snapped both the Royal 3-game winning streak and KC’s 7-series winning streak with a 5-2 victory over the Royals at Coors Field Wednesday night.

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The loss followed Christian Colon‘s error with 2-outs in the 6th inning that opened the door to a single, walk, and finally a grand slam by Matt McBride. The meltdown turned Danny Duffy into a hard luck loser (8-11), despite giving up only 1 earned run in 7 innings.


Meanwhile, Alex Gordon‘s recent surge combined with Mike Trout‘s slide has thrust Gordon to the top spot of the WAR (wins above replacement) metric, triggering a debate if Gordon really is the best player in baseball.

The Minnesota Vikings come to Arrowhead Saturday for the Chiefs 3rd preseason game. The game includes the return of former Chiefs QB Matt Cassel, who was released before the 2013 season and hooked on with the Vikings.

Just how will the Kansas City crowd receive their former starter?

Cassel was emblematic of former GM Scott Pioli’s inability to admit a mistake. Given Pioli’s train wreck of a tenure as Chiefs GM, the reaction to Cassel might not be very positive.


"Yet, since Eric Hosmer was injured and Billy Butler began to play first base virtually every day, something happened. Butler transformed back into the hitter that the Royals have come to expect over the past few seasons, producing a .330/.369/.526 batting line with four home runs in his last 27 games. Not only has that surge helped propel the Royals to the top of the American League Central, but it has also earned him the cover of the most recent edition of Sports Illustrated, as they highlight the Royals resurgence."

  • Royals Review – Baseball writers Jeff Passan and Dave Cameron argue about Alex Gordon on Twitter:

"Alex Gordon is not going to win the MVP. If Mike Trout can’t garner more votes than Miguel Cabrera in the balloting, you don’t have to worry about Gordon sneaking into the race and winning the award. Murray Chase wouldn’t have it.Sure, the debate is largely about how well certain stats — like fWAR — evaluate player performance, but ultimately, it’s just one stat"


"We knew when the Chiefs took Fisher that he was going to be something of a project. Luke Joeckel was considered the more polished offensive lineman while Fisher had the higher potential ceiling but had some edges that needed to be smoothed out. One of those edges was getting bigger and stronger. Fisher was listed at 306 pounds (which may be generous) coming out of college but he played like he was under 300 pounds."

"The NFL’s best running back hasn’t had a pre-season carry since 2011, and has only appeared in one pre-season game over the last three years. It had been speculated that Peterson could see some time in this Saturday’s game, as he’s yet to take a live snap in Norv Turner’s new offense, but the Vikings have decided that it isn’t worth the potential risk."


"With its homegrown 21-year-old ‘keeper Jon Kempin tearing it up as Andy Gruenebaum’s replacement (who was replacing starter Eric Kronberg), he’s suddenly no longer looking like the man being groomed as starter of the future. Eric Kronberg is still out for at least another month after breaking his finger during training, but at this rate it’s possible Kronberg comes back to a spot on the bench."


  • KStateSports.com – 6′ 11″ forward Stephen Hurt discusses what caused him to transfer to K-State:

"“The high level of play, I’m going to be playing on the highest level possible, that was a big draw to come here,” began Hurt on the reasoning behind his decision to come to K-State. “The family atmosphere, too. The fans are diehard fans, and I like that and the craziness that goes along with that. The facilities here are some of the best facilities in the country, and finally the coaching staff – they really shot me straight. I like the coaching staff. I had a good feel for them.”"

There you have it KC fans—the news Around the Kingdom.