According to John Heyman the Royals have reinserted themselves, he uses the phrase “expressed interest,” into the “chase” for free agent pitcher Jarrod Washburn. My question is why? What does Washburn bring to the table for the Kansas City Royals? I will admit that, he would probably turn in a better season than Hochevar or Davies, and maybe even Brian Bannister, in 2010, but what happens to the rotation in 2011 and 2012 as a result? Does his presence in the rotation realistically push the Royals any higher than 4th place?
Kansas City’s reported interest is another example of the front office simply not understanding what they are at this point in their development. With or without Jarrod Washburn they will not be a competitive team this season so why bring in a aging veteran with declining stuff when you have younger guys, like Davies, who still possess some semblance of potential? For all his failings and inconsistency, Kyle Davies still has middle of the rotation stuff. The same cannot be said for Jarrod Washburn so all things considered I’d much rather have the guy who is nine years younger and has some potential remaining. Heck I might go so far as to argue that Kyle Farnsworth has more potential than Washburn. If you were to ask me who I would rather have in the 2010 rotation, Farnsworth or Washburn, my answer would be Farnsworth.
If the Royals were legitimately in the mix to win the AL Central, maybe this move would make a little sense but that begs the question. Why are more teams that expect to compete not interested in Washburn? To follow up that question with another, why is he even still on the market?
It will be a happy day when this organization stops stunting its own growth and stops chasing the mediocre lefty just so they can have one starting every fifth day.