The KC Royals probably don’t need to check out a pair of veteran pitchers.
For two seasons, Scott Kazmir, once one of the game’s better pitchers, was nowhere to be found. After last pitching in the majors in 2016 and the minors in 2017, the lefthander didn’t throw a pitch anywhere in 2018 and 2019.
Then, he signed on with the Eastern Reyes del Tigre in the independent Constellation Energy League during the pandemic-shortened 2020 campaign and went 2-1 with a 4.20 ERA in four games.
Kazmir made it back to the big leagues in 2021 but wasn’t overwhelming for the Giants. Not that he had much of a chance to be—he left the club in July to pitch for the U.S. Olympic team and didn’t return to San Francisco until late in the season. For the year, Kazmir gave up eight earned runs and walked six in 11.1 innings, although he was a more encouraging 3-3, 4.61 in 13 Triple-A games.
Now 38, Kazmir is 108-97 over 13 big league seasons; he earned 145 of his wins with Tampa Bay from 2004-2009. His best days clearly behind him, he’s not a starter the Royals should find interesting.
Like Kazmir, Aaron Sanchez is a free agent on whom Kansas City should pass. He’s a serviceable 35-34 over seven seasons, including his All-Star 2016 campaign when he was 15-2 with a 3.00 ERA for Toronto, but he’s a disconcerting 11-24, 5.03 since that season and missed all of 2020 with an injury. The righthander was 1-1 in nine games this year when the Giants released him in mid-August.
The KC Royals need rotation help. They’re not likely to find any among the Giants’ free agents.