1.) Re-sign Eric Hosmer
The Kansas City Royals have a handful of the best upcoming free agents ready to hit the market. Many fans would love nothing more than to see them all magically return next year. Some would be fine with Alcides Escobar and Jason Vargas leaving, but they would give anything to have Mike Moustakas, Lorenzo Cain and Eric Hosmer stay with the club.
If Hosmer leaves, and especially if Moustakas and Cain follow, there’s not much the team can do to make 2018 a success.
Those fans will probably be disappointed no matter what happens this winter. Hopefully, some will settle for the Kansas City Royals re-signing the most popular of the trio to a long-term contract. That’s the first goal the franchise needs to accomplish for a successful 2018.
Moustakas and Cain have both had injury problems in recent seasons. Wade Davis showed this year that past health issues don’t necessarily crop up every subsequent campaign. However, given the length of contract the pair will seek, it’s a legitimate concern. Hosmer has stayed remarkably healthy during his career. He played every game this season either at the non-physically grueling first base or designated hitter. That should keep him on the field for much of the contract.
He also will sell tickets. Clearly, he’s not the only one. Salvador Perez, Danny Duffy and Whit Merrifield, among others, are each worth the price of admission. But Hosmer is one of the most popular athletes in Kansas City, losing him would hurt the franchise more away from the field than it would between the lines. If Hosmer leaves, and especially if Moustakas and Cain follow, there’s not much the team can do to make 2018 a success.