Jul 25, 2014; Atlanta, GA, USA; San Diego Padres center fielder Chris Denorfia (13) drives in a run with a base hit against the Atlanta Braves during the fourth inning at Turner Field. Mandatory Credit: Dale Zanine-USA TODAY Sports

Royals Trade Rumors: Royals Looking at Pitching, Chris Denorfia

With the major league trade deadline fast approaching, here are the latest rumors involving the Kansas City Royals:

The San Diego Padres are planning on trading Chris Denorfia. According to Joel Sherman, both the Royals and the Atlanta Braves are considered the front runners for the 34 year old outfielder. This season, Denorfia has produced a .242/.293/.319 batting line with one home run and eight stolen bases. However, Denorfia could be of interest in a platoon role, as he has hit left handed pitching at a .301/.367/.443 rate over his career.

The Boston Red Sox continue to be a possible trade partner, as the Royals have been linked to both John Lackey and Andrew Miller. Miller who has produced a 2.34 ERA and a 0.898 WHiP with 14.7 K/9, would be a major upgrade over the left handed tandem of Scott Downs and Francisley Bueno. Lackey, meanwhile, has produced an 11-7 record with a 3.60 ERA and a 1.231 WHiP. With Lackey being under control through next season, he could possibly help the Royals in 2015.

A potential problem with getting Lackey is that his 2015 contract calls is for the league minimum. Lackey has threatened to retire instead of playing for that amount, so the Royals would likely need to sign him to a contract extension in order for him to be more than a rental.

The Royals have also inquired about starters Bartolo Colon, Jorge De La Rosa, Ian Kennedy and A.J. Burnett. Colon and Kennedy would be under team control through 2015, while De La Rosa and Burnett would strictly be rentals for a chance at the postseason.

Jon Heyman of CBSSports.com has reported that the Royals, along with four other teams, are actively pursuing Alex Rios. With his .304/.335/.430 batting line, Rios is considered one of the better hitters available presently, despite having just four home runs on the season. Perhaps a change of scenery would help Rios to rediscover his power hitting ability, as he did hit over 20 home runs as recently as 2012.

If the Royals make a move today, we will certainly get the news to you as fast as possible.

*UPDATE – 11:49 CST* According to Peter Gammons, John Lackey has been traded to the St. Louis Cardinals for Joe Kelly and Allen Craig.

*UPDATE – 1:19 Pm CST* According to Ryan Divish of the Seattle Times, Deorfia has been traded to the Seattle Mariners.

*UPDATE – 2:05 PM CST* Per Jerry Crasnick, Andrew Miller has been traded to the Baltimore Orioles.

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