The Kansas City Royals have some decisions to make at the end of the season. One of these decisions regards pitcher Burch Smith.
Burch Smith was drafted by the Cleveland Indians twice before finally entering the MLB after being drafted into the San Diego Padres organization in the 14th round of the 2011 June Amateur Draft. Smith was traded to the Tampa Bay Rays as part of a three team trade before being drafted by the New York Mets in the 2017 Rule 5 Draft. He was then traded to the Kansas City Royals immediately after.
He is signed through 2018 with the Kansas City Royals, but he is under team control through the 2019 season before becoming arbitration eligible in 2020.
2018 Season Statistics
In his 36 appearances this season, Smith has pitched 74.2 innings, yielding an ERA of 6.75. His WHIP sits at 1.621 on the season, and his WAR is -1.0, which isn’t great.
Should the Royals try and dump him?
In all honesty, no. He’s a cheap option to keep around while the younger arms gain more experience in Major League play. The nice thing about Burch Smith is that he does have one minor league option left. If they want to make extra room on the roster for younger talent, he can be sent down.
It doesn’t really make sense to try and trade him away in the offseason, especially considering the fact that he will not yield a large return. Plus, who knows, maybe with some offseason work, he will be able to surprise us all. That isn’t a likely scenario, but it may be worth keeping him, just in case. Again, he does have that option year left. So, when younger talent becomes ready, he can fall by the wayside.
As much as we would all like to see him go, keeping Burch Smith around for the 2019 season may prove to be a good move for the Kansas City Royals.