Royals, It Is Time To Sell
Dayton Moore selling in 2016 wouldn’t be a white flag for his current core group of players. It would be buying for 2017 and beyond.
Alex Gordon isn’t hitting. The Royals rotation is among the worst in baseball. Lorenzo Cain is hurt. Joakim Soria and Luke Hochevar haven’t been good.
The Royals currently sit at 48-49, eight games behind Cleveland in the AL Central and six games back of the second Wild Card spot.
It’s time to throw in the towel for 2016 and sell.
As Sam Mellinger of the Kansas City Star discussed last week, selling isn’t in Dayton Moore’s nature. And to his credit, if he had sold when many people (included me) were pressuring him to in 2014, the Royals in all likelyhood wouldn’t be defending champs.
However, this is a different circumstance. It is a circumstance that requires more urgency.
The Royals have virtually their entire core locked up for 2017, but in 2018, it is very likely that some combination of Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, and Lorenzo Cain will no longer be Royals.
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It is less likely, but not unlikely, that all three of them will call some place other than Kansas City home in 2018. Which leaves the 2015 World Series Championship core with one last shot at glory in 2017. And that last shot is not going to be spurred on by the Royals treading water in 2016 for the off chance of a postseason appearance.
If Dayton Moore were to decide to sell, it wouldn’t be in the normal sense of the word, which fits right into the Royals habit of breaking the market patterns. The selling wouldn’t be for rebuilding, but for reloading. It would be an investment into 2017.
And luckily for Moore and Co., the market seems to be geared to benefit the Royals.
The Cubs have reportedly acquired closer Aroldis Chapman from the Yankees for top prospect Gleyber Torres, according to multiple sources.
Our friends at Royals Review were encouraged by the precedent this deal would set on the market for relievers.
The Royals have a few good relievers, including Wade Davis, who will be an UFA after 2017.
Davis is the Royals marquee trade piece at the moment, but have also reportedly had interest in Edinson Volquez, who has a mutual option with the Royals for 2017.
You could also add Kendrys Morales to that list, another potential contract off the books in 2017.
The Royals have a stockpile of perfect rental pieces for potential contenders that could be turned into players that could help out in Kansas City for 2017 and beyond.
Knowing Dayton Moore, he will carry a high asking price for all potential valued trade pieces.
Luckily for the Royals, this market is pretty meh, which could make for some pretty nice inflation in value.
With the market set by Chapman, you have to figure Davis would get a pretty generous haul, and a team would just as likely overpay for Volquez, due to a lack of depth in the starting pitchers market.
Selling is never fun, especially when all of these guys were major contributors on the first World Series championship in Kansas City since 1985.
But if there was ever a time to do so, it is now.
The Royals will enter 2017 with a roster consisting of Mike Moustakas, Eric Hosmer, Lorenzo Cain, Salvador Perez, and Alex Gordon to name a few. Not to mention a combination of Luke Hochevar, Joakim Soria, Kelvin Herrera, and Wade Davis.
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That roster looks like a lot the one that brought a trophy home on the team plane.
Should the Royals add, say, a few mid to top-level starting pitcher prospects to that roster, their might be another run in this core still.