Change is nothing new for this season's KC Royals. First-year manager Matt Quatraro, for example, frequently mixes up lineups, defensive assignments, and pitching choices. In-season trades took several players, including Scott Barlow, Aroldis Chapman, Ryan Yarbrough, José Cuas and Nicky Lopez, away to greener pastures. Hunter Dozier was released in May.
Expect more change as soon as the season ends. General manager J.J. Picollo, a baseball operations executive more willing to make necessary moves than was Dayton Moore, his predecessor and mentor who principal owner John Sherman ushered out the door 11 months ago, must improve the starting rotation and bullpen and the club's offense. And he'll have to trim some players from the organization.
Who'll be coming to the Royals remains to be seen, but time with the franchise may be running out for several players. Here are three.
Outfielder Jorge Bonifacio's second stint with the KC Royals could end soon
To say that Kansas City's offseason March signing of Jorge Bonifacio was surprising understates the transaction. A former Royal whose numbers eventually soured, and who served a PED-related suspension while with the club, had appeared in only 37 major league games after KC let him go after the 2019 season.
Considering the Royals' flock of talented outfielders, it's no surprise that Bonifacio hasn't made it back to Kansas City this year. Instead, he's spent the season at Double-A Northwest Arkansas, where in 97 games he's clubbed 19 homers, driven in 73 runs, and has a .259 average and .355 OBP.
Despite those encouraging numbers, nothing suggests the Royals will call him up this month, and they're not about to use one of their two September roster expansion slots on him when they need to get looks at younger (Bonifacio is 30) prospects. He probably isn't in the club's long-term plans; look for him to move on after this season.
Who else might be on the way out?