Streak to AL pennant defined 2014 for Royals

Shut-down relief, dazzling defense and timely hitting brought World Series back to KC

Streak to AL pennant defined 2014 for Royals

What can be said about the 2014 Kansas City Royals that can even attempt to put into words what America saw throughout October? Ned Yost's plucky bunch emerged as a tight-knit, rapidly improving baseball team with one common goal and one nasty bullpen arm after another.

They entered the year coming off a promising 2013 that saw them win 86 games. They had their ups and downs throughout 2014 and managed to sneak into the playoffs via the Wild Card after finishing second to the Tigers in the American League Central, putting playoff baseball on the Kauffman Stadium field for the first time since the 1985 team walked off that ballpark's then-artificial surface as World Series champions.

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Doug Miller is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @DougMillerMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

For Guthries, holiday season about 'love and sharing'

For Guthries, holiday season about 'love and sharing'

It's been a crazy offseason for Royals right-hander Jeremy Guthrie, but he wouldn't want it any other way. Less than two weeks after Kansas City made it to Game 7 of the World Series, Guthrie was off to the Japan All-Star Series, representing MLB.

There, he and his wife, Jenny, and three children immersed themselves in Japanese culture, and Guthrie, who is partly of Japanese descent, connected with family members he hadn't ever met.

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Doug Miller is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @DougMillerMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rios excited to join 'impressive' Royals

Club signs speedy outfielder to one-year deal, expects him to fit in well

Rios excited to join 'impressive' Royals

KANSAS CITY -- The Royals feel as if veteran outfielder Alex Rios will be a perfect fit in Kansas City, blending in seamlessly with their style of play in the outfield. If Rios, who turns 34 in February, can bounce back from a 2014 season mired with injuries, it will give the Royals the outfield help and bat in the middle of their lineup they've been searching for this winter.

On Friday, the club officially announced that it had signed Rios to a one-year contract that includes a mutual option for the 2016 season and introduced him at a news conference later that day.

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Jamal Collier is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @jamalcollier. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rehabbing Medlen joins Royals on 2-year deal

Right-hander returning from Tommy John surgery

Rehabbing Medlen joins Royals on 2-year deal

The Royals would love to see Kris Medlen return to the form that made him one of the breakout pitching stars of Major League Baseball in 2012 and 2013. That's why they're willing to wait a bit longer for it to happen.

Kansas City didn't wait a day longer to sign Medlen, however, and on Thursday made official a two-year deal loaded with incentives for the pitcher, who is attempting to come back after his second Tommy John surgery. Medlen was introduced at a news conference in Kauffman Stadium and assigned uniform No. 39.

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Doug Miller is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @DougMillerMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Volquez agrees to 2-year deal with Royals

Right-hander went 13-7 with Pirates in 2014

Volquez agrees to 2-year deal with Royals

A week before Christmas, the Royals have apparently finished up their holiday shopping.

Kansas City finished off a wildly active post-Winter Meetings week by agreeing to terms on a two-year, $20 million contract with free-agent right-hander Edinson Volquez, a source confirmed to MLB.com. The club has not yet announced the deal, which was first reported by CBSSports.com.

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Doug Miller is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @DougMillerMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Royals trade Giavotella to Angels for righty Broderick

Pitcher played independent ball in 2014, won't be added to roster

Royals trade Giavotella to Angels for righty Broderick

The Royals have traded infielder Johnny Giavotella, who was designated for assignment on Thursday, to the Angels for right-hander Brian Broderick.

Broderick is a non-roster acquisition who will not count against the Royals' 40-man roster.

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Joey Nowak is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @joeynowak. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Royals request release waivers for outfielder Peguero

Royals request release waivers for outfielder Peguero

The Royals have requested release waivers for outfielder Carlos Peguero, the team announced Friday. The 27-year-old spent the majority of the 2014 season with Triple-A Omaha, batting .266 with 30 home runs and 76 RBIs.

He was called up by the Royals on Sept. 1 and appeared in four Major League games, going 2-for-9 with a double and an RBI.

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Joey Nowak is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @joeynowak. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Royals Charities surpasses $1.2 million in 2014 funding

Postseason success helps boost local efforts

Royals Charities surpasses $1.2 million in 2014 funding

Royals Charities, the Royals' charitable foundation, announced funding on Thursday of more than $1.2 million this year to organizations and government entities in the Kansas City area that support children, education, youth baseball/softball and the military.

Part of that donation was made possible by the Royals' thrilling march to the World Series, as the total includes four special grants from funds raised during the club's postseason run. The Community Services League, Kansas City (Mo.) Public Schools, Warriors' Best Friend Foundation and Samuel U. Rodgers Health Center received postseason grants.

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Adam Berry is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @adamdberry. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Phil Rogers

AL Central looking like one powerhouse division

Tigers are reigning champs, but pennant-winning Royals, Indians, White Sox eye top spot

AL Central looking like one powerhouse division

The Tigers are the king of the American League Central, and the king is always given his due. They would probably be the division favorites if the 2015 season began today.

But in this case probably is a big word.

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Phil Rogers is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Royals sign Kendrys to 2-year deal

Free-agent slugger spent 2014 season with Twins, Mariners

Royals sign Kendrys to 2-year deal

The $17 million didn't hurt, but veteran hitter Kendrys Morales also donned a jersey with "Royals" across the chest on Tuesday because he believes Kansas City is poised for another postseason run or two.

"At first, I didn't think they would make the playoffs, but obviously they caught fire there at the end," Morales said through a translator. "They played real well, and that was the point I thought, 'OK, this could really happen for them.'"

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Doug Miller and Adam McCalvy are reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Royals add righty Pino on Major League deal

Royals add righty Pino on Major League deal

The Kansas City Royals have signed Yohan Pino to a Major League contract, the team announced Monday.

The 30-year-old right-hander made his debut this past season on June 19, and although he struggled a bit in the big leagues (2-5 with a 5.07 ERA in 11 starts) with the Twins, he showed promise while excelling in Triple-A.

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William Boor is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @wboor. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hosmer co-hosted MLB Network Social Awards

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Hosmer co-hosted MLB Network Social Awards

Dear Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences,

I know that Neil Patrick Harris is hosting the upcoming Academy Awards, but I'm writing to you today to ask you to consider Eric Hosmer. Don't replace Neil (I'm sure he'd be OK with me using his first name) -- just let Eric join him.

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Royals acquire Rule 5 pick Gustave from Red Sox

Royals acquire Rule 5 pick Gustave from Red Sox

SAN DIEGO -- The Royals kept busy Thursday by acquiring hard-throwing right-hander Jandel Gustave in a trade with the Red Sox.

Gustave, 22, was selected by the Red Sox from Houston's Triple-A roster with the No. 6 pick in the Major League phase of Thursday's Rule 5 Draft and dealt to Kansas City. The Royals are getting a pitcher, with a fastball that reaches triple digits, who has been a starter and reliever since being signed by Houston as an international free agent in May 2010.

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Doug Miller is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @DougMillerMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Salvador Perez's 10 best Instagram posts

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Salvador Perez's 10 best Instagram posts

Salvador Perez has this catching thing down pretty well. He's an All-Star, pennant-winning backstop who set the record for most innings caught in a season (and that was before heading to Japan for the All-Star series). But if there's one thing that Perez may be even better at, it's Instagram.

Like a tamer version of Jake Gyllenhaal's character in "Nightcrawler," Perez's phone is always rolling -- and we're all the better for it. 

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Royals plant seeds for future moves at Meetings

According to a source, the club also agreed to a deal with Morales

Royals plant seeds for future moves at Meetings

SAN DIEGO -- The Royals entered the new era of an American League title defense with some roster vacancies to fill, and the sunshine and relaxing vibe of San Diego didn't prevent them from getting to work on putting down the check marks.

The Royals came into the Winter Meetings with the publicly stated goals of landing a bat or two, including an outfielder, and a starting pitcher. By Thursday afternoon, as the team's brass departed Southern California, the Royals had appeared to have taken care of one of those priorities while also taking a chance on a Rule 5 pick that could end up paying off in years to come.

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Doug Miller is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @DougMillerMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Dozier named to Fall League's Top Prospects Team

Most Valuable Player Greg Bird leads young stars following AFL season

Dozier named to Fall League's Top Prospects Team

The Arizona Fall League on Wednesday announced its 2014 Top Prospects Team, highlighted by league Most Valuable Player Greg Bird and baseball's top prospect Byron Buxton.

The 22-man Top Prospects Team includes at least one player from 16 Major League organizations. The Fall League managers and coaches voted on the team, taking into consideration the players' performances during the fall and their projected future in the Major Leagues.

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Teddy Cahill is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @tedcahill. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Yost excited as Royals retool for run in 2015

Skipper says club remains focused on winning World Series title

Yost excited as Royals retool for run in 2015

SAN DIEGO -- Royals manager Ned Yost attacked his Winter Meetings media session on Monday in an energetic, demonstrative fashion that brought back memories of six weeks ago, when his team tore through October. His body language seemed to say, "Bring it on."

Yost is ready for the remaining winter moves his front office will make to fill the vacancies created by free agency departures. He's set to bring on February, when his team will reconvene in Surprise, Ariz., for Spring Training as the American League champion with the target on its back. He's prepared to deal with all the skeptics and doubters, just as he did in 2014.

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Doug Miller is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @DougMillerMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Royals reign with four-pack of GIBBY Awards

AL champions are top Postseason Storyline, while Holland, Davis, Moore receive honors

Royals reign with four-pack of GIBBY Awards

The Royals may have fallen short of baseball's ultimate prize last season, but they still took home plenty of hardware with multiple MLB.com Greatness in Baseball Yearly Awards.

The American League champions were recognized with 2014 GIBBY Awards for Closer, Executive and Setup Man of the Year as well as top Postseason Storyline on Saturday night in a live broadcast on MLB Network and MLB.com.

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Doug Miller is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter @DougMillerMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Winning atmosphere kept Hochevar in Kansas City

Reliever, who missed 2014 season, signed two-year deal with Royals

Winning atmosphere kept Hochevar in Kansas City

KANSAS CITY -- Royals reliever Luke Hochevar said sitting out the 2014 season while his team went to the World Series was the hardest thing he has ever done.

"Or not done," said Hochevar, who had Tommy John surgery on March 17. "To sit there when I knew it was our time to pop, to sit there and watch it ... I would rather experience what we did hurt than not experience it all. But in the same sense, watching us play for the world championship, it was hard not to say I wish I had the ball or this is my spot."

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T.R. Sullivan is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Postcards from Elysian Fields, and follow him on Twitter @Sullivan_Ranger. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wakamatsu to remain Royals' bench coach

Member of Kansas City staff was a finalist to become Rays' new manager

Wakamatsu to remain Royals' bench coach

While supportive of Don Wakamatsu's pursuit of another managerial job, the Royals learned on Friday that they will be retaining their bench coach for 2015.

Last month, Wakamatsu was named one of three finalists to replace Joe Maddon as the Rays' next manager. He then became one of two remaining candidates for the post after Raul Ibanez withdrew his name from consideration due to family concerns. Ultimately, however, Tampa Bay decided to give Kevin Cash, most recently the Indians' bullpen coach, his first managerial gig, sources tell MLB.com. The Rays have not confirmed the hiring of Cash.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Hochevar signs two-year deal with Royals

Reliever returns to KC after missing 2014 campaign with elbow injury

Hochevar signs two-year deal with Royals

An already formidable Royals bullpen may have gotten even better for 2015, as Kansas City welcomes back a familiar pitcher who ultimately decided not to leave.

A free agent for the first time in his career, Luke Hochevar opted to stick with the only professional organization he's known when he signed a two-year contract with the Royals on Thursday. The deal also includes a mutual option for 2017. Terms of the agreement were not released by the club, though CBSSports.com, which first broke news of an agreement on Wednesday, reported the contract to be worth $10 million.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Mike Bauman

None more professional than tireless Kaegel

Admired baseball journalist entering retirement after half-century in game

None more professional than tireless Kaegel

Those of us who have the pleasure of knowing Dick Kaegel also know that he is a sure thing.

You can depend on him. He will be at his post. He will deliver the goods; in this specific case, for the last 27 seasons, the news regarding the Kansas City Royals. He will be on time, he will report without fear or favor. Swiss watches -- expensive Swiss watches -- operate with less dependability than Dick Kaegel on his beat.

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Mike Bauman is a columnist for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Prep shortstop Rodgers leads 2015 Draft class

Duke's Matuella, 2014 top pick Aiken follow Florida high school infielder on Top 50 list

Prep shortstop Rodgers leads 2015 Draft class

For the second time in their history, the Arizona Diamondbacks own the top pick in the First-Year Player Draft. The first time that happened, in 2005, they took a high school shortstop with a potent bat.

Ten years after grabbing Justin Upton, the D-backs could follow a similar path. Lake Mary (Fla.) High School shortstop Brendan Rodgers sits atop MLBPipeline.com's initial Draft Top 50 rankings, thanks to his three plus tools (bat, power, arm) complemented by two solid ones (speed, defense). Unlike Upton, who immediately moved to the outfield as a professional, Rodgers should remain at shortstop.

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Jim Callis is a reporter for MLB.com and writes a blog, Callis' Corner. Follow @jimcallisMLB on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Royals non-tender Bueno

Royals non-tender Bueno

The Royals declined to tender a 2015 contract to left-hander Francisley Bueno on Tuesday, making him a free agent.

The 33-year-old Bueno spent parts of the past three seasons with the Royals. He posted a 4.18 ERA in 30 appearances in 2014.

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Cash Kruth is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @cashkruth. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Royals' Gordon reflects on World Series dash

Ninth-inning drama of Game 7 provides incentive for 2015

Royals' Gordon reflects on World Series dash

KANSAS CITY -- Throughout the offseason, Alex Gordon has heard the question many times: Should he, would he, could he have scored in the ninth inning of the seventh game of the World Series?

What happened, as Royals and Giants fans know quite well, was that after his two-out single and a two-base error, Gordon was stopped at third base by coach Mike Jirschele. Then Salvador Perez fouled out and the Giants won the game, 3-2, and the World Series championship.

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Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Royals named Baseball America's top organization

Club's player development cited in building winning atmosphere

Royals named Baseball America's top organization

KANSAS CITY -- Homegrown is the by-word of success for the Royals and Baseball America recognized that in selecting the franchise as the publication's Organization of the Year for 2014.

This is the second time the Royals have won the award, which was established in 1982. They were also the winner in 1994.

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Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Chasing Tigers, not much tinkering for most of AL Central

White Sox add LaRoche, Duke, but Tribe, Twins, Royals yet to make big offseason splash

Chasing Tigers, not much tinkering for most of AL Central

The first few weeks of the Hot Stove season have been busy, but there is still plenty more action to come.

After re-signing the American League MVP runner-up and picking up club options on some complementary pieces, the Tigers are the AL Central team that everyone is looking at, as they must decide if they will spend big to bring back Max Scherzer in their quest to win their fifth straight division title. The rest of the division has remained relatively quiet thus far, save for the White Sox, who added a slugger and a key bullpen arm.

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Royals deal Crow to Marlins for lefty Flynn

Miami Minor League right-hander Redman also heads to Kansas City

Royals deal Crow to Marlins for lefty Flynn

KANSAS CITY -- Aaron Crow's career with the Royals began with 13 straight scoreless outings and an All-Star selection in 2011. Now, after four seasons, he's been traded to Miami.

Crow was dealt to the Marlins on Friday in exchange for two pitchers, a potential starter in left-hander Brian Flynn and a right-handed reliever in Reid Redman.

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Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Royals retain reliever Frasor on one-year deal

Right-hander's deal includes mutual option for 2016 season

Royals retain reliever Frasor on one-year deal

KANSAS CITY -- Eager to shore up the middle of the bullpen, the Royals on Friday announced the signing of free-agent right-hander Jason Frasor for 2015 with a mutual option for 2016.

The deal is for $1.25 million plus a possible $500,000 in performance bonuses for next season. The mutual option for 2016 is for $2 million plus $500,000 in performance bonuses, with a $550,000 buyout. That means Frasor is guaranteed at least $1.8 million.

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Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gordon lights up Plaza to continue magical year

Moore joins Royals slugger on stage for 85th annual Thanksgiving event

Gordon lights up Plaza to continue magical year

KANSAS CITY -- Thousands came out to cheer Alex Gordon, but this time, not at Kauffman Stadium. On Thursday night, it was at the Country Club Plaza. And, oh yes -- the roar of the crowd was also directed at thousands of holiday lights.

Gordon, the Royals' left fielder of the American League champions, and Royals general manager Dayton Moore, the team's architect, were on a stage in the midst of the celebrated shopping and residential area to flip on the lights.

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Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.