Dayton Moore has to think about what he is willing to spend to bring in the pieces the Royals need. Mandatory Credit: Denny Medley-USA TODAY Sports
The Kansas City Royals are looking to add an outfielder. As JOHN VIRIL discussed, there are a number of different options available that KC has shown interest in.
But whilst there are options available, the question is what have the KC Royals got to offer to bring them to Kansas City? Taking a look at the free agent market, GM Dayton Moore should have a bit of money to play around with, but how much?
If we look at the current Alex Gordon situation, we should get a rough idea of what Moore has to offer. Gordon looks in line to receive a four year deal, worth around $100 million dollars.
With KC apparently at risk of being out-priced in the Gordon bidding, we can guess that $25 million a year is pretty much the max the Kansas City Royals can or are willing to offer (if there were more funds available or allocated, they wouldn’t be getting out-priced).
One option would be to simply allocate more money to acquire an outfielder but with the KC Royals also looking to add at least one starting pitcher, doing so could compromise the money available to fill that need as well.
KC also went out and spent money on Joakim Soria. Whilst I like the addition of Soria, as DAVID HILL discussed his acquisition was not a necessity, and it now means that Moore now has $7 million less cash to splash.
$25 million a year is still a lot of money to be able to offer. Even if the Royals don’t have quite that figure to dish out (maybe a max of $20 mil a year instead), they should still be able to fill an outfield spot with that money – that outfielder just won’t be Alex Gordon, Justin Upton or Yoenis Cespedes.
So if that gives us a rough estimate of what the Kansas City Royals have to offer a free agent, what exactly can we expect them to offer at the trade table?
The prospect cupboard has already been raided, with five players Brandon Finnegan, Cody Reed, John Lamb (all sent to Cincinnati), Sean Manaea and Aaron Brooks (both sent toOakland) being traded away last year in the deals that brought Johnny Cueto and Ben Zobrist to the K.
Despite this, the KC Royals still have plenty of talent down in the minors. According to MLB.com’s 2015 Prospect watch the Royals have three players Raul Mondesi (33), Ashe Russell (83) and Kyle Zimmer (95) in the top 100.
A trade to acquire a high-quality outfielder is likely to involve one of either Mondesi, Russell or Zimmer, and at least one of Almonte, Cuthbert, Starling, Blewett or Bonifacio with the possibility of other players being included as well.
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If the Royals do opt for the trade option as the best way to bring a quality outfielder in, who they get will come down to what they are willing to give away. They certainly have valuable players to deal, but is it worth it?
With a strong roster and a number of KC Royals set to become free agents in 2018, KC’s championship window is now. It’s important that Moore tries to build on what KC already have, but he has to be careful not to sacrifice too much of the future in the process.
I’d like to think Mondesi is off the table, I think he is too valuable a player to be trading away unless the Kansas City Royals are getting something major in return. I would be comfortable with dealing either Russell OR Zimmer, but not both.
Whilst prospects are never a sure thing and it might not be realistic to expect all the players named to become valuable contributors at the major league level, KC’s World Series Championship was built on the foundations of the quality players we had in our system.
Alex Gordon, Kelvin Herrera, Yordano Ventura, Eric Hosmer and Mike Moustakas have all been with the Kansas City Royals since they began their careers. Former Royal Zack Greinke was turned into Lorenzo Cain and Alcides Escobar.
Again, it might be unrealistic to expect the current batch of prospects to replace to all the guys on the current KC Royals roster, but if the Royals trade them all away we’ll never know if they could have.