The Kansas City Royals added another name to their ranks. This time it comes in the form of Seth Maness, who the team signed to a minor league contract on Monday morning.
While this deal isn’t going to blow anyone out of the water, it’s a nice deal and could end up becoming something more for the Royals. Kansas City’s bullpen isn’t going to be what it once was, and Maness could end up being a vital part in that pen.
The old H-D-H trio aren’t running through those bullpen gates. The only remaining man from that trio is Kelvin Herrera, who has earned the closer role after years of sitting behind Greg Holland and Wade Davis.
Maness, a four-year reliever for the Cardinals from 2013-2016, has a career ERA of 3.19, which is pretty dang good. His best season came in 2013 when he pitched 62 innings with a 2.32 ERA and a 5-2 record. That was the year in which the Cardinals made it to the World Series, but lost in six games to the Red Sox.
According to Derrick Goold of The St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Maness had an elbow injury and underwent a procedure to fix the injury.
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"The surgery Maness had, called “primary repair,” doesn’t have the sexy name. It doesn’t have the brand recognition of Tommy John. But it also doesn’t have the lengthy recovery time of its famous forefather."
Obviously injuries to pitchers are scary, as the first one tends to be a trendsetter in what’s to come, but I like this signing. Maness was a very good reliever for the St. Louis Cardinals throughout his tenure there, and the Royals really need relievers.
Other than Herrera, we’re looking at a pen of Brian Flynn, Joakim Soria, Matt Strahm (if he doesn’t make the rotation), and Chris Young (same on the rotation) along with lesser known names like Scott Alexander, Andrew Edwards, Jake Junis, and Kevin McCarthy. All of those guys are on the Royals’ 40-man roster and could be the members of the 2017 bullpen.
So no, while Seth Maness isn’t a name that everyone is super pumped about, give the guy a chance. He could end up being a Ryan Madson type who comes around and surprises all of us. He could also turn out to be like Kris Medlen, who does nothing down the stretch.
We’ll just have to wait and see.