Hopefully, new owner John Sherman can resolve some of the lingering questions
1. How will John Sherman approach his first free agency?
As previously noted, the Royals will have the financial flexibility this offseason to make several improvements to the roster. If they really wanted to, they have the potential to take on a large contract like a Gerrit Cole, but I am not if that’s a contract Sherman immediately wants to be handcuffed to.
2. What does the rotation look like next year?
Plain and simple. The Royals cannot trot out the same rotation from this year otherwise they will be destined for another 100-loss season. Ideally, the front office would target two starting pitchers in free agency and/or trade. The fab-five pitching prospects will be ready in a couple of years but they cannot wait on them, nor should they.
3. Will anyone be traded this offseason?
The only player that I could see generating some trade interest in the offseason is Whit Merrifield. However, with the injury to Adalberto Mondesi at the end of the season and his recovery timetable of 5-6 months, there’s a very good chance Whit remains on this roster throughout the offseason.
4. What does Nicky Lopez provide next season?
Lopez has done well in Mondesi’s absences and it would seem more playing time has greatly benefited him. He is going to start the Whit diet and exercise program to round out his game and could be a candidate to take a giant leap next year. If so, the Royals will have to get creative in finding playing time for everyone.
5. What does Salvador Perez look like in 2020?
The Royals catcher was lost for the season in Spring Training after undergoing Tommy John surgery. He is projected to be ready for Opening Day next year but he’ll be 30 in May next season. How much longer can be a productive catcher and will his arm be healthy enough to throw out runners are both additional questions that need answers.