Sep 20, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Royals pitcher Ervin Santana (54) delivers a pitch against the Texas Rangers during the first inning at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports

The Royals Might Not Get Anything for Ervin Santana


Aug 30, 2013; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Ervin Santana (54) looks in before delivering a pitch against the Toronto Blue Jays at Rogers Centre. The Blue Jays beat the Royals 3-2. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports

The one benefit of the qualifying offer is that, should a player refuse to accept it, the team offering would receive a draft pick as compensation. Naturally, that draft pick would be given so long as the player signs by the MLB Amateur Draft, but that is typically not a problem for the bigger names available. However, with the market not turning out the way that Ervin Santana, Stephen Drew and Kendrys Morales have expected, there has been talk that all three players may be willing to sit out until June.

For the Royals, this could be the worst case scenario. Not only would they potentially lose Santana to another team willing to pay his demanded salary, but they would also lose out on the draft pick compensation they may have been banking on. Instead of either signing a second starter at a discount or receiving a draft pick in return, the Royals could end up with absolutely nothing.

There is another possibility. Ervin Santana may just decide to sign after Opening Day, thereby avoiding the possibility of having another team extend a qualifying offer. Both strategies are fraught with risks. If Santana signs after Opening Day, it will still take time before he is ready to face a major league lineup. Signing after the draft could make it where Santana only pitches the final two and a half to three months of the year. In either scenario, he may end up losing even more money this season than he presently would with the qualifying offer.

Perhaps the Royals could still find a way to bring Santana back. Although his agent did state that David Glass may be the only thing holding up a deal, it may be possible that Glass realizes that Santana, at a possibly reduced rate, may be enough of a value where he releases his iron grip upon his wallet, allowing Moore to spend the money needed to truly solidify the rotation.

In all likelihood, Ervin Santana will sign somewhere after June, when he feels he would be able to receive fair market value. If that happens, then the Royals are not only out their second starter, but they also lost draft pick compensation. Somehow, this just seems so very Royals of them.

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Tags: Ervin Santana Kansas City Royals

  • Tyler_KC_Fan

    It’s time to forget about Santana. We can all but expect that he wont sign until after the draft and he won’t be with the Royals. The team will be fine without him and we will survive.

    Signing Santana isn’t as easy as it sounds. Glass is the reason why we aren’t signing him, but that’s because the Royals have already spent around $98M which is maxing our budget out. So, signing Santana would require Glass to foot the bill. Would you spend $14.1M of your own money on a pitcher you know the only reason he’s back is because no one else wanted him and he will leave once again at the end of the year? No. Now, if the Royals trade away Hoch or Davis or someone else with a big chunk of change attached to them then maybe we could sign him back, but that is highly unlikely due to the fact that if we trade a position player we still have the problem of a crowded rotation and bull pen.

    It just does’t look like the Royals are going to get anything out of this situation, so worrying about it isn’t worth it anymore.

  • jimfetterolf

    Sounds like Santana cutting off his nose to spite his face. There are teams that have already lost draft picks for other FAs that could use Santana, Baltimore and Seattle obvious ones, so I would say the problem is Santana’s asking price. Teams look at the Cruz contract, go “that’s fair”, then figure that’s about what Santana is worth give or take a couple of million.

  • Michael Lizalde

    It’s nice to see teams not over paying for players anymore! The market has obviously spoke. Draft picks are not as important in baseball as they are in football. Teams trade players all the time. Getting a ready starter now as opposed to drafting and waiting 3+ years. The cost of losing a draft pick is not big especially with pitching! Santana is obviously getting bad advice from his agent and for once I’d say that glass is playing the right card. $14 million is nothing to sneeze at. I’m guessing other teams agree that more than that is not worth it. The agent saying its up to glass is obviously a way to make him look like the bad guy. Playing off the emotions of fans. I never agreed with glass prior and can’t see myself agreeing with him after. However, I feel he is playing this one right.

  • unclejesse40

    I think it would be smart of Santana to come back to Kauffman for one more year and show people that he was able to pitch well multiple years in a row. I think Kauffman stadium and the Royals defense is perfect for him. But with the lose of the qo pick he would need to come at a discount which does not seem likely.

  • jimfetterolf

    Saw today on mlbtr that Santana is asking 4/50. The later he waits the less likely he is to get his asking price.

    • Dave Hill

      Saw that as well. You would think that he and his agent would have figured out by now that he just does not have that market.

  • dremus

    Just my opinion, but I think Santana’s agent has drifted off course and Santana has no idea what is happening.