Skip to content

Royals misjudge their talent, Wil pay the price

Dec 9, 2012, 11:58 PM EDT

Dayton Moore, David Glass Getty Images

Royals GM Dayton Moore has told us for years to “trust the process.” For better or worse, he put forth his endgame on Sunday night, sacrificing top prospects Wil Myers and Jake Odorizzi, not to mention third baseman Patrick Leonard and left-hander Mike Montgomery, in order to bring in James Shields and Wade Davis from the Rays.

In so doing, it looks like he jumped the gun. The process just wasn’t working out as hoped. The Royals had increased their win totals three straight years, but not hardly enough to matter. They won 65 games in 2009, 67 in 2010, 71 in 2011 and 72 in 2012.

And that’s the problem. These Royals weren’t two players away. At least not these two players. Maybe the 2014 Royals would have been. But the odds were against Moore being in charge of the 2014 Royals unless the team took a big step forward next season.

What we have here is a general manager who put his own best interests ahead of those of his team. And probably bought himself an extra year of employment as a reward.

That’s not to say it couldn’t work out. Shields is heckuva a pitcher, albeit not as good of one as Tropicana Field has made it seem (Shields has a 3.33 ERA at home and a 4.54 ERA on the road in his career). Davis seemed to find his niche as a reliever last season, though odds are that the Royals will take another look at him as a starter. Myers has very rare power for a right-handed hitter, but if last year’s strikeout rate is a sign of things to come, he might not post strong OBPs in the majors.

In the end, this trade will likely be judged on two factors: the Royals making the postseason and whether Myers turns into a star. I doubt he’ll be any sort of bust, but he might be more of a .250-.260 hitter than a perennial All-Star. My guess is that he ends up more in the Nick Swisher class of quality regular than something truly extraordinary.

Of course, Orodizzi should be overlooked, either. The best of the minor leaguers the Royals got from the Brewers in the Zack Greinke trade, he’s a potential No. 3 starter for the Rays.

As things stand now, these are your 2013 Royals:

Rotation: Shields, Jeremy Guthrie, Ervin Santana, Bruce Chen, Luke Hochevar
Bullpen: Greg Holland, Aaron Crow, Tim Collins, Davis, Kelvin Herrera, Louis Coleman, Francisley Bueno

Lineup: CF Lorenzo Cain, SS Alcides Escobar, LF Alex Gordon, DH Billy Butler, 1B Eric Hosmer, C Salvador Perez, 3B Mike Moustakas, RF Jeff Francoeur, 2B Chris Getz

Bench: C Brett Hayes, INF Tony Abreu, OF Jarrod Dyson, INF Irving Falu

Could that be a wild card team? It’s conceivable. The lineup certainly looks solid, especially 3-7. Shields is good enough to front a contending rotation, and Guthrie is a fair enough three or four. The bullpen should also be very strong, even if it’s filled with a bunch of relative no-names.

Still, the Royals will need some breaks. It will help a great deal if Danny Duffy and Felipe Paulino can make strong returns from Tommy John surgery and contribute in the rotation, because those two could be considerable upgrades over Chen and Hochevar.

In the meantime, it’s a shallow team, something that will become painfully obvious once injuries strike. Myers and Odorizzi were definite candidates to contribute this season, and their absence leaves the Royals with little in the way of intriguing alternatives for DL fill-ins. Davis and Luis Mendoza are the primary rotation fallbacks. The Royals are going to have to add a couple of veteran bench players before the winter is out.

I’d say the Royals are an 82-85 win team at the moment. It’s a team with upside; Hosmer and Moustakas could break through and a healthy Perez will help a lot. But it’s still a real underdog for a wild card spot, and now the future for 2014 and beyond looks bleaker than it did yesterday.

Latest Posts
  1. Video: Umpires review, uphold Nick Franklin homer that hit the “C” ring at Tropicana Field

    Sep 20, 2014, 11:05 PM EDT

    Nick Franklin Nick Franklin

    Nick Franklin hit the “C” ring catwalk at Tropicana Field with a deep fly ball to right field, which was initially ruled a home run. Replay review confirmed the ruling.

  2. Scrambling Dodgers to give Jamey Wright a start on Sunday

    Sep 20, 2014, 10:15 PM EDT

    Jamey Wright Jamey Wright

    The pitching-light Dodgers will have Jamey Wright make his second start in the last seven years on Sunday against the Cubs.

  3. Jerome Williams becomes first to beat one opponent with three different teams in the same season

    Sep 20, 2014, 10:10 PM EDT

    Jerome Williams Jerome Williams

    Jerome Williams continued to pitch well for the Phillies, even notching a baseball first in the process of defeating the Athletics on Saturday.

  4. Matt Garza ejected after hitting Andrew McCutchen a second time

    Sep 20, 2014, 9:19 PM EDT

    Matt Garza Matt Garza

    Matt Garza doesn’t hit many batters, but the right-hander managed to hit Andrew McCutchen twice in his start on Saturday.

  5. Mark Teixeira left Saturday’s game with soreness in his right wrist

    Sep 20, 2014, 8:35 PM EDT

    Mark Teixeira Mark Teixeira

    Mark Teixeira’s wrist injury flared up again, forcing him out of Saturday’s game against the Blue Jays in the fifth inning.

  6. Josh Hamilton has needed 12 cortisone injections in the last two weeks

    Sep 20, 2014, 7:45 PM EDT

    Josh Hamilton Josh Hamilton

    Josh Hamilton has received a lot of pain-killing injections lately, as the veteran has battled shoulder and rib cage problems over the last two weeks.

  7. Jason Kipnis considered day-to-day with hamstring issue

    Sep 20, 2014, 6:55 PM EDT

    Jason Kipnis Jason Kipnis

    Jason Kipnis is listed as day-to-day with a sore right hamstring.

  8. Glen Perkins has learned his lesson about pitching through an injury

    Sep 20, 2014, 6:05 PM EDT

    Glen Perkins Glen Perkins

    Glen Perkins tried to tough out an injury and it didn’t go so well, but he seems to have learned his lesson.

  9. Tigers hang on for second straight win against Royals

    Sep 20, 2014, 5:20 PM EDT

    Hunter AP AP

    This was a day of missed opportunities for the Royals.

  10. Nationals activate Ryan Zimmerman from the disabled list

    Sep 20, 2014, 4:24 PM EDT

    Ryan Zimmerman AP AP

    Zimmerman has been sidelined since July 22 due to a Grade 3 strain of his right hamstring.

  11. The Braves could shake things up in their baseball operations department

    Sep 20, 2014, 3:26 PM EDT

    braves logo large

    The Braves have wilted down the stretch and it appears that some changes could be in store for their front office following the season.

  12. The Yankees will open the gates early for their final home series next week

    Sep 20, 2014, 2:29 PM EDT

    Boston Red Sox v New York Yankees Getty Images

    With Derek Jeter’s career coming to an end, the Yankees will open the gates early next week for their final home series of the season.

  13. Giants mull over options as Tim Hudson continues to struggle

    Sep 20, 2014, 1:50 PM EDT

    Tim Hudson Getty Getty Images

    Hudson has a 9.92 ERA over four starts this month.

  14. Phil Hughes could finish the season with the best K/BB ratio in MLB history

    Sep 20, 2014, 1:01 PM EDT

    cb5dcb6958b647d1df076d653df15985 Getty Images

    Twins right-hander Phil Hughes has thrived with a change of scenery this season and he could finish the year with a place in MLB history.

  15. Masahiro Tanaka expected to be limited to 70-75 pitches in return Sunday

    Sep 20, 2014, 12:16 PM EDT

    c3744cd5ad0be7c72993ae1f6d3a5888 AP

    Tanaka has been out since July 8 with a partially torn ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow, but he’ll make his return Sunday against the Blue Jays.

  16. VIDEO: Little girl throws back a Derek Jeter foul ball and horrifies parents

    Sep 20, 2014, 11:29 AM EDT

    jeter ball

    I’m going to guess that the little girl is suffering from Jeter fatigue.

  17. John Lackey impresses in return to Cardinals’ rotation

    Sep 20, 2014, 10:49 AM EDT

    8eacda0dc18fd4679845c6bf8f6157e4-1 Getty Images

    John Lackey had his most recent turn in the Cardinals’ rotation skipped due to a “dead arm,” but he was impressive in his return last night.

  18. Michael Cuddyer drove in a career-high seven runs last night

    Sep 20, 2014, 10:09 AM EDT

    Michael Cuddyer Getty Getty Images

    Michael Cuddyer has had a really tough time staying healthy this season, but the impending free agent is making up for lost time right now.

  19. VIDEO: Fan catches Lucas Duda home run ball in his bucket of popcorn

    Sep 20, 2014, 9:31 AM EDT

    fan popcorn

    A fan sacrificed his popcorn to catch a home run ball last night at Turner Field.

  20. Settling the Score: Friday’s results

    Sep 20, 2014, 8:57 AM EDT

    52a2981688df59976e21e02bd42d5156 AP

    A quick recap of a busy Friday around MLB, including the A’s getting back in the win column.

Featured video

Patience finally paying off for Royals fans
Top 10 MLB Player Searches
  1. R. Castillo (2827)
  2. D. Ortiz (2124)
  3. N. Arenado (2078)
  4. J. Hamilton (2070)
  5. C. Kershaw (2031)
  1. G. Stanton (2018)
  2. A. Rizzo (1932)
  3. A. Pujols (1804)
  4. A. Pagan (1764)
  5. H. Ramirez (1699)