The Royals face a difficult market to add starting pitching help at the upcoming non-waiver trade deadline. ESPN’s Jerry Crasnik said numerous scouts at the MLB Futures game told him that potential seller are asking for severely over-priced returns for impact starters.
Crasnik’s report is bad news for the pitching needy Kansas City Royals, who need to add at least one starting pitching at the trade deadline. According to Crasnik, teams want to offer bottom of the rotation options when teams want guys that can help win playoff games.
While a good no. 4 or no. 5 starter would actually help the KC Royals, it probably wouldn’t be enough to help them run down the Cleveland Indians in the AL Central—who hold a 7.0 lead over Kansas City. With the Kansas City Royals depleting their prospect depth by dealing five left-handed pitchers in deadline deals last season, the front office is likely to get out-gunned by prospect rich shoppers like the Chicago Cubs or Los Angeles Dodgers.
All of this does not bode well for the KC Royals hopes of going on a second half run when you consider that they’re unlikely to get help from injured starters Kris Medlen, Mike Minor, and Jason Vargas anytime soon. The Royals have to hope that more teams drop out of contention by the last days of July, and that the number of sellers increase. That’s the only way that asking prices are going to drop.
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In such an environment, Kansas City Royals general manager Dayton Moore could be forced to settle for a no. 4 or no. 5 pitcher with upside, such as Matt Moore (4.45 ERA with a 8.0 K/9) and still overpay for him. The KC Royals might have to settle for upgrading their lineup with a left-handed bat such as Josh Reddick or switch hitter Carlos Beltran and hoping that Yordano Ventura gets his head on straight, or a miraculous contribution from a minor-league pitcher helps the rotation down the stretch.
Let’s hope that Royals pitching coach Dave Eiland can work some temporary voodoo on one of the arms he’s currently got on staff.
Who knows, maybe the health fairly can touch her magic wand to Kyle Zimmer‘s right arm and give him two months of use from it. Barring that kind unforeseen luck, the Kansas City Royals might not find significant rotation help at the trading deadline.