With the Kansas City Royals 1/2 game out of 1st place on June 17, the team looks poised to be buyers at the trade deadline. GM Dayton Moore told the Kansas City star that owner David Glass would allow him to add payroll for a playoff push. Not so long ago, I wouldn’t have believed it.
After getting swept in late May by the Houston Astros, I began working on a piece in which I would detail the demolition of the Royals roster, and the fire-sale that should ensue. I was going to give some opinions on who I thought should be dealt, and where they should go. I guess I’ll just keep that one in the hopper, as the Royals have miraculously won eight straight games, and find themselves 1/2 game out of first place in the AL Central.
Now that the Royals appear to be in the hunt for not just a wild card, but also a division title, I guess I’ll do a 180 and provide some opinions on players I think the Royals should potentially target via trade between now and the July 31st trading deadline.
Let’s set some parameters though, and examine where the Royals could realistically look to improve. The only two spots that make sense to me are third base and right field, which are currently being held down by an improving Mike Moustakas and Nori Aoki respectfully.
As much as I want to be a believer in Moustakas, I’m just not. The offseason trade for Aoki was something I really liked, and thought would work out well, but so far has been nothing short of disappointing. Back in the ’80’s, Royals/Cardinals/Phillies outfielder, Lonnie Smith, had a nickname of “skates” due to his defensive woes. Aoki reminds me of him.
I don’t think it is realistic to expect the Royals to go get an elite player via trade, so if you’re hoping to see a list of superstars on my list, you’re going to be very disappointed. I’m trying to narrow my scope to what I consider to be somewhat realistic targets, and guys who would provide notable improvement to the Royals offensive output, all while not really costing a fortune in terms of money and/or prospects.
(Note: I will include a pipe-dream trade target, just for the heck of it.)