KC Royals: Grading the team’s offseason additions

(Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports)
(Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports) /
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KC Royals, Carlos Santana
(Photo by Ed Zurga/Getty Images) /

A pair of established players the KC Royals were counting on earned C’s.

Facing a season with a predominantly young starting rotation, Kansas City went hunting for a veteran arm last winter. The best on the market apparently exceeded the Royals’ financial parameters, but the club obviously believed Mike Minor was an answer when they signed him to a two-year contract.

The decision seemed reasonable. Minor’s reputation as an innings eater was well-earned, he’d had a couple of excellent seasons with Texas (12-8 in 2018 and 14-10 in 2019), he’d pitched for the Royals before (2017), and at 32 he certainly wasn’t washed up.

The results probably aren’t what KC anticipated. Yes, Minor’s eight wins tied Brad Keller for the club lead, but he lost 12 and posted the second-worst ERA (5.09) among the Royals’ regular hurlers. He also surrendered 26 home runs.

Minor gets a C.

Despite his 50-game A, a C also goes to Carlos Santana. His second half explains why.

The Royals signed Santana for two years to get on base, hit homers, drive in runs, and fill the first base void left by Eric Hosmer. He was doing all four things at the All-Star Break with a .368 OBP, 15 homers, 50 RBIs, and good defense.

But the 12-year veteran’s bat disappeared in the campaign’s second half. He hit .176, homered just four times, and drove in only 19 runs. Santana finished with a miserable .214 average.