I’ve been in Kansas City all winter. It’s been brutal. Cold, snowy, sub-zero wind chills. I hate winter.

Today winter is over. Today, the Royals play their first game of the SPRING.

About time.http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3054/2323207446_d93bb55ed5.jpg

SABR Trey posted his opening spring lineup. It looks like something we could see during the regular season.

LF Scott Podsednik
C Jason Kendall
1B Billy Butler
CF Rick Ankiel
RF Jose Guillen
DH Alberto Callaspo
3B Alex Gordon
SS Yuniesky Betancourt
2B Chris Getz

Don’t think I’m endorsing this lineup. I’m most certainly not. However, I did previously state that I think Hillman sometimes needs more trial and error to figure things out. Granted, you would think most of these things should be fairly obvious, but I guess It’s better late than never.

Anyway, this isn’t an especially good lineup. Kendall should never hit above seventh. And Guillen should lose his glove for the good of the team and just decide if he’s going to play, he’s going to DH. And Podsednik isn’t the best leadoff hitter.

To me, It’s good news that Hillman is trotting this lineup out during the Cactus League. It gives him an opportunity to see that It’s not really the best use of his resources.

Pitching-wise, it will be Kyle Davies, Robinson Tejeda, Phillip Humber, Anthony Lerew and Matt Herges. Of this group, I’m probably the most interested in seeing how Humber fares. I don’t have especially high hopes, but it would be nice if he could pitch consistently enough that he could be a long man out of the bullpen. I’ll also be keeping an eye on Tejeda. Not because I think he can be a starter. Rather, I just want to see if he can get through a couple of innings without walking more than two batters.

The Royals made a minor move yesterday, claiming Gaby Hernandez off waivers from the Red Sox. He had been claimed by Boston just a few weeks ago after spending all of last year in Triple-A Tacoma as a starter in the Mariner organization. He finished with a 5.23 ERA with 3.0 BB/9 and 6.0 K/9 in 146 innings. The K/BB ratio isn’t the best, and It’s been dropping a little too sharply since he made his professional debut as an 18 year old in 2004.

He’s been a starter for his entire career, but he could probably be a candidate for the bullpen for the Royals this year.

However, this is really just a move to create some depth. He’ll likely remain as a starter and open the year in Omaha. But anytime you can pick up a 24 year old pitcher who’s enjoyed even a little bit of success in the minors, you have to do it.

The temperature rose above 45 degrees this week in Kansas City and the Royals are playing ball.