Everyone has heard the suggestions and rumors, loud at times and softer at others, that the KC Royals will trade Salvador Perez. Some believe his franchise-record $82 million contract imposes too great a financial burden on the organization. Others say he's in decline; still others argue he should be traded now before he loses too much market value.
Nothing has come of those rumblings, at least not as of this writing, but there's been enough smoke around them to create the impression that there must be fire. And that two clubs, the White Sox and Marlins, are reasonably believed to have had more than passing interests in acquiring the Royals' eight-time All-Star who owns five Gold Gloves and a club record four Silver Sluggers, lends credence to the rumors swirling since last summer's trade deadline period.
Add to the intrigue of it all the logic attached to speculation that Perez could be with the White Sox or Marlins, and not the Royals, in 2024. Perez has close ties to Chicago manager Pedro Grifol, who coached for the Royals for much of Perez's career. And when Perez trade rumors hit their apex in July, the Sox wanted catching help and knew, with Yasmani Grandal set to hit free agency, they could need it even more in 2024.
Some logic also fueled thoughts that Perez could end up in Miami, another location to which he is closely attached. Like the White Sox, the Marlins also had, and may still have, catching needs.
And then there's KC general manager J.J. Picollo's frank admission that the Royals discussed a Perez deal with at least one club last summer.
But recent moves by the Sox and Miami suggest Perez is staying right where he is, and that's with the Royals, the only big league team he's every played for.
It looks like Salvador Perez isn't going anywhere
That the Perez-to-Chicago rumors should stop became evident Tuesday when reports surfaced that the Sox are acquiring Martín Maldonado. Somewhat ironically, Maldonado caught half the 2019 season for the Royals while Perez rehabilitated from the Tommy John Surgery he underwent during spring training.
Chicago picking up Maldonado, a Gold Glove-winning backstop, should extinguish whatever dying embers remain of the speculation that Perez would team up in Chicago with Grifol and several other Royals alumni. The Sox probably aren't bringing Maldonado in to backup someone else.
It also appears Perez won't be a Marlin. Miami, whose catching requirements increased when the club didn't pick up Jacob Stallings' option, acquired Christian Bethancourt in a trade with Cleveland earlier this month, and Major League Trade Rumors suggests he'll share duties behind the plate with Nick Fortes, an arrangement that would leave no room for Perez.
So now, with the White Sox and Marlins seemingly through looking for catchers, and with no other serious Perez suitors on the horizon, can't the "Trade Salvy" talk end? It certainly should.