Kansas City Royals Trade for Johnny Cueto Symbolizes Growth


Being a Kansas City Royals fan is fun. How bizarre does that statement sound after experiencing the last 2-3 decades prior to 2014?

But since last year, when Kansas City made a miraculous run through the postseason and came 90 feet away from tying Game 7 of the World Series, there hasn’t been a team more enjoyable to be a fan of then the Kansas City Royals.

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The Boys in blue continue to show that, as general manager Dayton Moore pulled the trigger on Cincinnati Red’s ace Johnny Cueto for three minor league lefties. The trade gives the Royals their first true ace since Zack Greinke, even if he is only a two-month rental.

It’s no question this trade is a win for the Royals, especially as there are questions surrounding all three of the southpaws they shipped out. In return, they have a guy they can hand the ball to Game 1 of the World Series.

But what’s even better is what this trade symbolizes.

This trade represents how far the Kansas City Royals have come in the Dayton Moore era. Moore is known for his team friendly deals, like the extensions that Salvador Perez and Yordano Ventura agreed to. He has made moves at the trade deadline before, although much less ground breaking. And, of course, how could we forget what Moore did getting James Shields and Wade Davis, a trade that we now know was a major victory for Kansas City.

But this position was new. No one knew what the Royals were going to do at this trade deadline because, quite simply, they had not been in this position before. Never before in the Moore era had Kansas City been the best team in the American League, or even well above .500 at this point in the season.

Even with their staggering stronghold on the American League Central, the Royals rotation was a big concern. Outside of Edinson Volquez, there were question marks surrounding each starter in the rotation.

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Chicago White Sox: 2022 player grade for Johnny Cueto
Chicago White Sox: 2022 player grade for Johnny Cueto /

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  • For several weeks now, the Royals have been attached to headlining starting pitchers such as Cueto, but many people (myself included) doubted Moore since he had never pulled the trigger on a big move like this. Moore did just that and the deal symbolizes how far this team has come. Never in our wildest dreams would pre-2014 Royals fans believe a move like this would be possible. Never in a million years would we believe this scenario to be true. But here we stand, watching our beloved boys in blue, for a lack of better phrase, “go for it”.

    It’s been like a fairytale watching the Royals closely this past year. Seeing how close this team was to claiming the crown. Seeing how passionate fans get behind a winning team. Seeing the All-Star ballots stuffed, the television ratings go through the roof, and now seeing Moore do something so unprecedented in his time with KC.

    Time and time again, we are reminded how far this team has come and the best part: They are not done yet. Even with landing a true ace, Kansas City kept a majority of its top prospects in the process.

    This means that yes, Kansas City has plenty of firepower to go out and make another move at the trade deadline. The Royals could use some bigger bats like Ben Zobrist or a Justin Upton to shore up the lineup. No way you say? Too unrealistic? Maybe, but we all thought the same thing about getting Cueto. It’s time to accept this franchise has done a lot of growing up since once being considered the punching bag for the rest of Major League Baseball. So watch out MLB, the Kansas City Royals are for real. Just let our new friend Johnny Cueto show you in Kauffman Stadium for Game 1 of the Fall Classic.

    Next: Did the Royals Give Up Too Much for Johnny Cueto?