5. Jordan Lyles
Lyles is starting out of pure necessity at this point, and he's far better suited to be the No. 5 guy instead of a middle-of-the-rotation pitcher.
He had a 6-17 record with a 6.28 ERA last season but did eat up 177.2 innings. Given the limited depth in the bullpen, you could do worse for a last starter.
With a 22nd-percentile ranking in expected ERA, Lyles actually fared better by advanced metrics than he did on the field. It's reasonable to expect sublte improvement and provided the front rotation guys do their jobs, it won't matter if Lyles struggles.
This is a quality rotation by any metric. It represents a significant upgrade for Kansas City and should thrill Royals fans for the future.
Even if we have to sit through a Lyles start every five days, he should be better. If not, who cares? Everyone else will be.
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