Is this veteran the answer if the KC Royals look for a lefthanded reliever?
The hotly-debated “three-pitcher rule” MLB implemented in 2020 might have diminished the role of lefthanded relievers, but there remains an obvious and important place for them in today’s game.
Kansas City, though, is short on bullpen lefties. Amir Garrett fought control issues last season, his first with the Royals, and Richard Lovelady pitched only four innings in the minors after spending most of the campaign rehabbing from Tommy John Surgery. That leaves Anthony Misiewicz, who pitched well after coming to Kansas City in an August deal with Seattle, as the only other bullpen lefthander on the roster.
But a lefty Texas free agent—11-season veteran Matt Moore—could strengthen the Royal relief corps. Originally a starter, Moore added some relief work in 2018, then threw 10 scoreless innings in two 2019 starts before he injured a knee against the Royals April 6 and missed the rest of the season.
Moore pitched in Japan the next year, then returned to the U.S. and went 2-4, 6.29 in 24 games (13 starts) for Philadelphia in 2021.
He joined Texas last season and, working exclusively in relief for the first time, gave up only 16 earned runs in 74 innings (1.95 ERA) and achieved a 10.09 K/9, the best of his career, by striking out 83. He also earned the first five saves of his career and his 63 appearances tied for the team lead. And at $2.5 million for the season, he was a bargain.
Kansas City should give Moore’s agent a call.