KC Royals: Making the case, San Diego free agents

(Photo by Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports)
(Photo by Jesse Johnson-USA TODAY Sports) /
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KC Royals
(Photo by Orlando Ramirez-USA TODAY Sports) /

The KC Royals might find some valuable help among San Diego’s free agents.

Spin it any way you want to. Say the KC Royals couldn’t afford him. Say they could, but he wanted an opt-out clause the Royals weren’t willing to give. Say he didn’t want any part of a painful, unavoidable rebuild.

Say anything you want, but the fact probably always was that Eric Hosmer wasn’t coming back to Kansas City. The San Diego Padres offered him a better deal and, for whatever reason, Hosmer took it and left the Royals after the 2017 season.

Now, it could be the Royals who lure a free agent away from the Padres.

The Royals’ first choice would likely be Trevor Rosenthal, who rediscovered himself in Kansas City in 2020 before the club predictably swapped him to the Padres in a trade deadline deal that brought Edward Olivares to KC. Rosenthal, perhaps the most successful yet of general manager Dayton Moore’s famous reclamation projects, had seven saves and a 13.8 SO9 rate at the time, then helped the Padres make the playoffs with an even better strikeout clip (15.3), nine scoreless innings and four saves.

But Rosenthal isn’t likely to return to Kauffman Stadium, at least not in a Royals uniform. Unlike KC, San Diego is close to World Series-ready and becoming the Rosenthal of old could drive up his market price too much.

Related Story. Why Rosenthal won't return to KC. light

After Rosenthal, the San Diego free agent numbers are few after Abraham Almonte signed with Atlanta last month and Yonder Alonso, who the Padres reacquired in August, retired Friday.

Who remains might, however, be of help to the Royals.