1. The Mexicutioner
-For the first time in a long time, the Royals have a dominant closer. In Joakim Soria, the Royals have found themselves a diamond in the rough, who is on his way towards becoming one of the most dominant closers in baseball. Armed with a wide variety of pitches and great control, Soria has made his living deceiving hitters. If the Royals can get the ball to Soria with a lead, then they will win lots of games in 2009.
2. Zack Greinke
-Expectations are high this season for Greinke. No one really knew what to expect from him last season in starting rotation, but luckily for the Royals, he flourished. Greinke showed phenomenal stuff and at times, was absolutely dominant. His 13-10 record in 2008 with a 3.47 ERA does not come close to underscoring just how much potential he has. If Greinke can improve against left handed hitters in 2009 (.287 BAA in '08), then there is a chance that he could put together a dynamite season for the Royals. He is that good.
3. Mike Aviles
-Where in the world did this guy come from? In 2008, Aviles put up huge numbers for the Royals by hitting .325 with 10 HR and 27 doubles in just 419 at bats. The question remains: can Aviles do it again? If Aviles is for real, then the Royals truly have found themselves their shortstop for the next decade. Only time will tell if Aviles was an aberration or not.
4. Kyle Farnsworth and Juan Cruz
-If the Royals are going to shock the world in 2009, then it will likely be largely because of these two gentlemen. Both Farnsworth and Cruz were brought in to serve as the bridge to closer Joakim Soria, a role of little glamor and high importance. These two have the potential to dominant hitters with their power stuff, which should be very exciting for Royals fans.
5. Jose Guillen's Temper
Seems like a lovely fellow...don't make him angry, Royals fans!