With a lot of unknowns surrounding the Kansas City Royals for 2020, the outfield gaps could be filled in a number of different ways.
There are two directions that could have to be taken by the Kansas City Royals in filling the gaps in the outfield. First, if Alex Gordon does not return on another contract, the team will have to fill the large defensive void left by the 7-time gold glover.
Second, whether Alex is brought back or not, the Royals have to fill the gaps by deciding who is going to be the full-time position holder. Like first base, the outfield has multiple players looking to fill a possible spot in the canyon of Kauffman Stadium.
The issue, assuming Gordon returns, is that there are six possibilities for the two outfield spots. Even if Gordon doesn’t get a new contract, there are still two players for each spot.
Dozier spent a lot of time in the outfield in 2019, but pending a big third base free agent signing, it’s likely he will remain at third. The story is similar for Jorge Soler, who will see limited outfield time, playing mostly in the designated hitter spot. Whit Merrifield could be the same, but with Nicky Lopez likely to be in the lineup, he stays in the outfield running until further decisions come forward.
That leaves Bubba Starling and Brett Phillips likely fighting for the center, and Merrifield and McBroom in the running for right. Of course, if Alex doesn’t return, the decision is made much easier, especially if McBroom takes over at first base.
The issue, if it hasn’t already been noticed, is that there is no rhyme or reason as to who is going to be in what outfield position in 2020. All of the listed players are great defensively, and some of them can produce offensively, making the decision even more difficult.
While the outfield is not the biggest concern for the Royals, it is one of the few positions that will need to be solidified a little more come spring training.
For most spots, the Royals have the players, they just need to figure out where they all fit in the best. 2020 will be interesting but as long as the Royals can correctly put the pieces together, along with maybe a few new pitchers, the 100 loss seasons can be a thing of the past.