Yes, it is that time of the year again. Time to throw out the old and bring in the new. And time to start preparing those New Year’s resolutions that will make us better people in the coming year. Some will commit to their resolutions and actually make the change while others will have forgotten them by the time the hangover wears off on January 1st.
While making my own resolutions for 2014, I decided to also suggest a few that Kansas City Royals players and management could adopt to help them improve 2014.
Here you go team.
I resolve to ignore the money and instead pay attention to the 2014 results on the field and in the stands.
I resolve to not go bargain basement hunting and instead allow our minor league prospects to prove themselves without blocking their way with other teams’ left overs just to be comforted by “organizational depth.” Continue reading
Royals General Manager Dayton Moore has been quietly busy this off season. And unlike past years, it seems all moves have actually improved the team. Amazing what Moore can do when given a proper budget.
Moore began the off season by signing starting pitcher Jason Vargas to a four year free agent contract then followed with trading pitcher Will Smith to Milwaukee for outfielder Norichika Aoki. Moore then achieved a small coup in tempting infielder Omar Infante away from the New York Yankees via a four year deal with fifth year option.
His latest move made just this week sent outfielder David Lough to Baltimore for infielder Danny Valencia.
The Vargas signing effectively replaced the loss of pitcher Bruce Chen and his nine wins in 2013. Aoki gives KC a much needed leadoff hitter plus actually improves the outfield defense, a major statement when the Royals already had one of the best run preventing outfields in baseball. Infante provides probably the biggest upgrade plugging a 2nd base hole that had been rated the second worst position in baseball over the last three years. And finally, Valencia adds security and a potential platoon at 3rd base should Mike Moustakas again struggle in 2014. Valencia also adds a right handed power bat to the bench, potentially making Justin Maxwell available. Continue reading
Here we are, half way through the baseball off season. As happens every year; tendering is complete, the winter meetings are history and Rule 5 draft selections are all but forgotten. The hoopla from a flurry of trades and signings has also died down although strangely, several top free agents still seek homes for 2014. Whether a result of the delayed Japanese posting system, the “lose your draft pick” death warrant, or just teams holding onto the extra TV money is open to discussion.
As for the Royals, one thing has not changed.
General Manager Dayton Moore is once again making wholesale moves; adding and subtracting players with abandon just as he has done every year of his tenure. However, the large number of moves this off season would appear excessive for a team supposedly on the cusp of the playoffs as many believe. That is until you look beneath the surface of those moves.
The 2014 Royals opening day roster will include no less than nine different players than started the 2013 season. Gone are outfielder Jeff Francoeur, infielders Chris Getz, Miguel Tejada and Elliot Johnson, catcher George Kottaras and pitchers Ervin Santana, Bruce Chen, Luis Mendoza and J. C. Gutierrez. Continue reading