Royals Rumors: KC Following OF Josh Reddick More Than Other Teams
By John Viril
The Royals are watching Oakland A’s outfielder Josh Reddick closer than any other team as the August 1 non-waiver trade deadline approaches.
San Francisco Chronicle writer Susan Slusser made this observation in her recent column, noting that the Giants, Cubs, Dodgers, Blue Jays, and Nationals have also scouted the Oakland corner outfielder.
The reason the KC Royals are interested in the 29-year-old Josh Reddick is that he’s a left handed hitting corner outfielder with a solid track record in both the field and at the plate, who is also in the final year of his contract. Reddick is a career .254/.316/.434 hitter with 91 home runs in eight major-league seasons. He also won a Gold Glove in right field in 2013, though his dWAR (defensive Wins Above Replacement) has been in negative numbers since 2015.
Add Reddick’s solid .293/.370/.418 start to the season before injuring his thumb to his reasonable $6.5 million contract for 2016, and you have one of the best trade deadline bargain among left handed outfielders.
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The Kansas City Royals have gotten good production in right field from Paulo Orlando (.324/.347/.417) and Brett Eibner (.269/.333/.500), but both are still early in their careers. The KC Royals front office can’t be certain either one will continue to produce in the second half of the season. Plus, the Royals offense could use another lefty to balance the lineup—which only has Alex Gordon and Eric Hosmer batting from the left side along with switch hitter Kendrys Morales.
Adding Reddick to the outfield mix would give the Kansas City Royals a nice set of outfielders along with Alex Gordon and Lorenzo Cain (when he returns from injury after the All-Star break). Orlando, Eibner, and Jarrod Dyson would form a deep set of reserve bats.
As attractive as adding Reddick would be, I believe KC Royals general manger Dayton Moore would be better served pursuing starting pitching help, though a package deal with Reddick and Sonny Gray or Rich Hill would be quite the coup.
Either way, Moore certainly seems determined to add help at the trade deadline given the numbers of rumors the Kansas City Royals have been generating. Given that he dealt for the two biggest trade pieces on the market last season in Johnny Cueto and Ben Zobrist, I don’t think you can count him out.
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However, I think he might satisfy himself with value additions to the outfield and rotation and hope for a playoff run like his team pulled off in 2014.