What we learned about the Kansas City Royals in shortened 2020 season

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Kansas City Royals

Kansas City Royals pitchers walk to the bullpen (Photo by Mark Cunningham/MLB Photos via Getty Images)

The 2020 season has come to a close for the Kansas City Royals and we learned a lot about this team along the way.

The unique 2020 Major League Baseball season gave us 60 games and the Kansas City Royals finished with a record of 26-34. It’s tougher to gauge this team based on how short the season was, but we did learn quite a bit about this group when it was all said and done.

While the team did finish with a losing record, it wasn’t all bad for the Royals. In fact, near season’s end, they actually looked to be slowly rounding the corner. Does that mean they’re going to be a playoff team in the next year or two? Not necessarily, but at least there were some positives from their eight games under .500 season.

Let’s dive into what we learned about the boys in blue after their short 2020 campaign.

Bullpen was the bright spot

When the Royals were wheeling and dealing in 2014 and 2015, it was because of their shutdown bullpen. It was hard not to notice just how good this year’s pen was, as they finished the regular season ranked as the eighth best bullpen in the league.

The biggest names out of the pen this year were Scott Barlow, Jesse Hahn, Greg Holland, Josh Staumont, Kyle Zimmer, and Tyler Zuber with all but two of those guys having ERAs under two. Staumont had an ERA under three and was one of the biggest stars out of the pen, but got a little more roughed up in the final weeks of the season.

Holland is the only one slated for free agency this offseason and unless the Royals opt to move any of these guys, the bullpen should continue to be pretty dang good in 2021 and beyond. That’ll be key moving forward because we saw how good this organization could be when they had a shutdown bullpen.

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