Kansas City Royals: How Nate Karns Impacts the Trade Deadline

KANSAS CITY, MO - MAY 13: Nate Karns
KANSAS CITY, MO - MAY 13: Nate Karns /

The Kansas City Royals have been dealing with a “vacant” spot in their starting rotation. Acquiring a starting pitcher by the trade deadline has been rumored. With the recent news the team received that possibility has grown even stronger.

Nathan Alan Karns came to the Kansas City Royals this past off-season. The team sent OF Jarrod Dyson to the Seattle Mariners to get the right hander. Karns came with an inconsistent past, but definite upside. In 44 2/3 IP for the Royals Karns was 2-2 with a 3.43 ERA. Unfortunately for the team he has been on the disabled list since May.

After searching for the reasoning behind Karns’ “dead arm” symptoms there has finally been a diagnosis. The 29 year old will undergo surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome. The procedure removes a rib that relieves pressure on a nerve in the arm.

The good news in the long term is that by figuring this all out at this point Karns will hopefully be ready to go by the time Spring Training rolls around. In the short term the fifth spot in the rotation has become…a rotation.

After beginning the post All-Star break dropping two out of three games to the Texas Rangers the Kansas City Royals are .500 on the season. The intention is to compete. To make one last run with the championship core. In order to do that the team needs to sure up the spot meant for Karns.

Current rumors have the Kansas City Royals interested in middle infielders. Many fans would like to bolster the back end of the bullpen. Both of those are reasonable options. However, having a reliable guy to hand the ball to every fifth day is huge down the stretch.

The plus is that as the deadline gets closer more names begin to emerge as possible trade candidates. The most recent being Jeff Samardzija of the Giants. Although he may not be a real option. Just in case anyone forgot about this incident.

Next: All-In? Time to Prove It

Karns being out for the rest of the season may just give some clarity to what GMDM will be looking to do by the end of the month. The best news, according to this article from Fox Sports, is that Ned Yost believes Karns “will come out OK.” The Kansas City Royals will definitely need him in the rotation for 2018.