The time is nearly here for the KC Royals to start shaping the 2024 roster. That can be through internal options or external acquisitions, but something has to change this offseason. The 2023 season was one of the worst in franchise history no matter how fans try to find a positive spin.
These KC Royals are under control for 2024 but have no business being here.
The front office showed they are more transactional than the previous regime, let's get that straight. A team that started off with veterans like Jackie Bradley and Hunter Dozier quickly moved on from two lost cases. 8 of the 26 players on Kansas City's Opening Day roster are no longer with the organization. That turnover, considering most of it happened before August, gives me some hope.
But hope is nothing if there are not results.
The Royals have a chance to show the fanbase some more favorable results. Move on from players who either bring little to the table or at least ones who need a fresh start away from Kansas City. The Salvador Perez trade speculation will certainly be swirling in the coming months, so let's omit him from this exercise.
All these players are under team control for 2024 at least, with one already on the payroll for 2024. Which three players should start planning their Kansas City departure?
Let's just say pitcher Taylor Hearn never received a warm, Midwestern welcome from the Royals faithful. His arrival came at the expense of fan-favorite Nicky Lopez in a lopsided trade the Atlanta Braves won.
The Royals are Hearn's third team this season after unsuccessful stops with the Texas Rangers and Braves. Hearn's last MLB appearance was on Aug. 28, where he gave up two earned runs in one inning. In total, Hearn's Kansas City career features 7 2/3 innings and an 8.22 ERA while surrendering 12 hits and seven earned runs.
Hearn is entering his third year of arbitration and is set to receive a raise on his $1,462,500 salary. The Royals should not pay that for a 29-year-old player who simply clogs up the 40-man roster. In the words of Rex Hudler, Taylor, you got to go.