The Royals are looking at a pair of reserve infielders in Aaron Hill and Trevor Plouffe, according to whispers around major league baseball.
Boston Globe writer Nick Cafardo reported the Kansas City Royals interest in both players in his column on Sunday. Last week, Cafardo indicated that the KC Royals wanted a starting pitcher, a bullpen arm, and an infielder before the 2017 season started. In the last two days, Kansas City general manager Dayton Moore has traded for a starting pitcher in Nate Karns, and signed three veteran relievers to minor league deals.
So far, Cafardo’s information about the Royals seems pretty good. But, he also said last week that he didn’t believe that Kansas City would make any further trades. Well, pretty good doesn’t mean perfect.
The thirty-year-old Trevor Plouffe played for division-rival Twins the last seven seasons before Minnesota non-tendered him this winter. He’s been a roughly league-average hitter for his career with a .247/.308/.420 slash line with 96 home runs. Plouffe has started at third base for three full seasons from 2013-15, before suffering rib and oblique injuries that cut short his playing time in 2016.
Meanwhile, Aaron Hill is a 34-year-old former All-Star who hit 36 home runs as a second baseman for Toronto in 2009. Hill moved on to Arizona, but lost his starting job as injuries and ineffectiveness slowed him beginning in 2013.
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However, Hill was an effective bench player for the Diamondbacks in 2016, slashing a solid .283/.359/.421 with eight home runs. Hill did struggle after a deadline trade to Boston where he hit a miserable .218/.287/.290.
Both players have logged major league time at second, third, and short. But, Plouffe has also appeared at first base and as a corner outfielder.
If Dayton Moore makes such a signing, it wouldn’t bode well for veteran Christian Colon‘s continued presence on the Kansas City roster. Colon is out of options and didn’t hit well as a reserve last season (.231/.294/.293). However, he did produce iconic pinch hits in both the 2014 Wild Card game against Oakland and Game 5 of the 2015 World Series.