The KC Royals are clear sellers at the impending MLB trade deadline. Being buyers would be the most puzzling Royals move this century, and they have some real headscratchers.
The KC Royals need to avoid these mistakes ahead of the MLB trade deadline.
They do have some assets that contenders could chase, though. The Texas Rangers already acquired Aroldis Chapman, and he is dealing for the AL West-leading Rangers. The Royals' big return in that trade, namely pitcher Cole Ragans, already made his Royals debut and impressed in his first start. Fans have to be feeling better about that trade return following a middling reaction to the Royals first notable trade of the season.
Other players, like pitcher Scott Barlow, infielder Matt Duffy, and even outfielder Edward Olivares, could attract interest ahead of the August 1 deadline. But those are really the remaining obvious crop of players that do not factor into the Royals' future plans and have a semblance of trade value. Now, the team's plans could change on a dime or with an overwhelming offer for a younger player, but none of the deadline's top assets reside in Kansas City.
The lack of big targets on the Royals roster is both a good and bad thing. It is good because the expectations are fairly low ahead of the deadline. The Royals netting a franchise-defining return for any one player is highly unlikely this summer. But that means that any trade they make has to be done deftly. It leaves little room for error across the spectrum of trades. There are plenty of ways the Royals could mess up the trade deadline, but here are my three most important things to avoid in the trade season.