KC Royals: Making the case, Cincinnati free agents

(Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images)
(Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images) /
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KC Royals
(Photo by Joe Robbins/Getty Images) /

Is there room in Kansas City for another slick fielding infielder and an outfielder with a good glove?

The KC Royals are blessed with Adalberto Mondesi and Nicky Lopez, a shortstop and second baseman who should both win Gold Gloves before their playing days end, and speedy outfielders who play excellent defense. Two Cincinnati free agents have good enough gloves to join the club.

Freddy Galvis was Philadelphia’s shortstop from 2015-2017 before a December 2017 trade took him to San Diego, where he became the Padres’ shortstop for a season before signing with Toronto and taking over the Blue Jays’ shortstop job. But the squeeze youngsters Bo Bichette and Cavan Biggio applied to the Toronto infield meant the popular Galvis had to go, and the Reds claimed him on waivers in 2019.

Galvis’ greatest asset is his glove; his stellar play is well-known and well-respected throughout the game. He has proven power—he averaged 17 homers a season from 2016-2019—but, as his nine-year .291 OBP demonstrates, doesn’t get on base enough. And Galvis’ .226 Reds’ average is 21 points below his career .247.

The Royals covet good defense and Galvis has it, but the club has Mondesi. Galvis can also play second, but that job belongs to Lopez, who’ll get at least another season to improve his hitting. So it is that the cash Kansas City might think about spending on Galvis can be invested more wisely.

Travis Jankowski is like a Galvis in the outfield, but without the power, the .247 career average, or even the .226 average with the Reds over the past two seasons. He’s good in the outfield but poor at the plate—he hit .182 in 2019 and .067 in 2020. Jankowski hasn’t homered since 2018 and the four homers he hit that season constitute exactly half of his six-year big league total.

The Royals will be busy next spring and season sorting out the many outfielders they already have, most of whom are good defenders and can hit better than Jankowski. If the club gives him even a thought, it shouldn’t give him a second.

Next. Can any Arizona free agents help KC?. dark

The Reds have seven free agents. The Royals aren’t getting Trevor Bauer, and shouldn’t pursue any of the other six.