This 2010 trade with Milwaukee brought two key players to the KC Royals.
Zack Greinke is a stellar pitcher and he was just what the Royals needed in the mid-2000s. He won the AL Cy Young in 2009 and had a 3.82 ERA with a 60-67 record with Kansas City before reportedly requesting a trade citing the desire to be part of a winning team.
What followed is what arguably could be called the biggest trade in Royals history. On Dec.19, 2010, Kansas City sent Greinke, Yuniesky Betancourt and cash to Milwaukee for Lorenzo Cain, Alcides Escobar, Jeremy Jeffress and Jake Odorizzi.
Greinke lasted just a year-and-a-half with the Brewers before going on to the Dodgers. Betancourt spent a year with the Brewers and even came back to Kansas City in 2012 before the club released him in August.
Needless to say, every Royals fan knows what happened with Cain and Escobar. The formed much of the core of the club for the next several years. Cain slashed .289/.342/.421 with a .763 OPS and 56 home runs, 308 RBIs and 120 stolen bases in seven seasons; Escobar hit .259/.292/.344 with 160 stolen bases in eight campaigns.
Cain and Escobar were both AL All-Stars, and Escobar won a Gold Glove at shortstop, in 2015.
In 2014, Cain won the 2014 ALCS MVP award when he slashed .533/.588/.667 against Baltimore. Escobar won the 2015 ALCS MVP when he slashed .478/.481/.652 against Toronto.
While Jeffress didn’t last long with the Royals, Odorizzi became part of another fantastic deal, a 2012 trade with Tampa Bay that brought Wade Davis and James Shields to Kansas City.
The KC Royals have acquired many good players from Milwaukee via trades, including Jim Colborn, Darrell Porter, Jim Sundberg, Nori Aoki, Lorenzo Cain, and Alcides Escobar.