Royals: Don’t put too much stock in Whit/SD rumors
By Jordan Foote
The San Diego Padres are reportedly interested in acquiring Kansas City Royals star Whit Merrifield. Dayton Moore doesn’t appear very interested in dealing, though.
MLB winter meetings are in full swing. With that comes quite the amount of rumblings. The Kansas City Royals are no different.
Per numerous reports, the San Diego Padres have expressed interest in trading for Royals second baseman/outfielder/jack-of-all-trades, Whit Merrifield. San Diego has a lot of talent but is coming off a 70-win season that was deemed disappointing by many. With a loaded farm system and another offseason for the core to progress, hopes are high heading into 2020.
Merrifield, one of the most versatile and consistent players in all of baseball, brings his lunch pail to work every day and has emerged as one of the faces of the Kansas City Royals. He’d make a welcomed addition to any Major League Baseball club. General manager Dayton Moore is aware of that, per MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan:
Despite countless hypothetical Merrifield trade rumors popping up over the past couple of seasons, this has been Moore’s stance for quite some time. He even signed Merrifield to a four-year, $16.25 million contract extension last offseason. All along, Moore has been hesitant to trade arguably his best player because offers simply haven’t blown him away.
A back-to-back hit king and two-time stolen bases champ, Merrifield has cemented himself as one of the MLB’s best players over the past few seasons. He is a shoo-in to hit at an above-average level with a bit of pop, steal a ton of bases and play good defense — regardless of position. More on the San Diego situation:
The last part of that quote reads, “That said, there’s no player on this roster, there’s no player in this organization that is untouchable if you get the right type of deal. You have to be open-minded and responsible to the process.” That is a bit more telling, as it’s been public knowledge how much Moore values Merrifield. On the other side of that, though, he’s not off the table in the event of serious trade talks.
Don’t freak out too much. This appears to be something that will happen for the next couple of winters and near every trade deadline from now on: Whit Merrifield on the move? Teams are doing their due diligence in regards to a great player. They’d be foolish to not gauge interest and test the waters. The line ends right about there, though.
As previously mentioned, the Padres do have an impressive farm system. It puts the Royals’ to shame. If general manager A.J. Preller offers up some top-notch talent in exchange for Whit Merrifield, perhaps Dayton Moore will open his ears up a bit. That’s been the plan all along, so don’t even look at the panic button just yet.