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Kansas City Royals Predicted To Top .500 By Baseball Digest

It’s hard to not like what the Kansas City Royals are doing right now. With a powerful young line-up and several dynamic arms, the Royals likely have several players that will continue to get better and some hidden gems as well. Add to this their off-season activity so far, and it’s easy to find a winning formula that could easily reach for an even record when all is said and done in 2012 — a feat in an of itself for a Royals team that’s often been the laughingstock of the American League.

Baseball Digest’s Todd Fertig finds a lot to like about the Royals in his Offseason Outlook:

The Royals hope they have a nucleus in place that won’t need much more tweaking. Eric Hosmer looks like a budding star, and Gordon finally lived up to his considerable expectations. Francoeur will hold onto the right field job indefinitely, and Alcides Escobar is entrenched at short.

Rookies Mike Moustakas (third base), Johnny Giavotella (second base) and Salvador Perez (catcher) are some of the top prospects at their respective positions, and each gained valuable experience in KC last season.

With the addition of Sanchez, the Royals should expect to top the .500 mark for the first time since 2003. If Gordon and Francoeur don’t regress, if the rookies take another step forward, and if the pitching isn’t as awful as last year, Kansas City might just challenge for the AL Central.