ROYALS WITH THE MOST TO PROVE – NUMBER 4: MIKE MOUSTAKAS
Mike Moustakas comes in at number four on this list for a variety of reasons.
For one, he’s one of the many impending free agents after this season wraps up. That will put the pressure on Moose because he has to show the Royals that he’s worth re-signing or show another team that he’s worth inking to a large contract.
Another big factor for Moustakas this season is that he’s coming off a torn ACL that cut his 2016 season short.
That injury came after Moose had the best season of his career in 2015 and made it to the All-Star Game. Many were hoping to see if it was true that Moustakas had rounded the corner into becoming a legitimate masher at the plate, but we never really got that answer.
After struggling in the early years of his MLB career, Moustakas has to show that A) he’s healthy and recovered fine from his ACL injury and B) that he can replicate that 2015 season success and not slump back into what he once was for the Royals: a bust.
I don’t see the Royals retaining Moustakas after this season because I really don’t think they’ll be able to afford to keep him. If he plays well enough, however, perhaps he’ll become their first priority to re-sign.