My Kansas City Royals pushed the go for it button today by trading for ace pitcher Johnny Cueto. I wrote a few days ago I didn’t think the Royals would be able to get Cueto because I thought he would command a much larger return than Finnegan, Reed, and Lamb.
Cueto was not the top pitcher on my list of trade targets but for what the team gave up I am happy with the deal. The only real issue I have with the deal is that all three guys are lefties. Lefties are always a more valuable asset than right handers but if you told me before today that a package of Finnegan, Reed, and Lamb would bring back an ace I would have said I doubt it.
The deadline is 5 days away which means the Royals still have a ton of time to ad some more pieces. I think the Royals will try and be aggressive because of two things. The first is that we didn’t give up a ton in the Cueto deal. The top prospects are still there in the system to be moved if the right deal comes together. Two I think the trade market for pitchers is not nearly as strong as the Royals thought it would be two weeks ago.
I think the Royals could use a bat and an infield bench type guy but I honestly don’t know if it is a pressing need. Gordon will hopefully be back in a month, Orlando has been playing well, Dyson isn’t to shabby either, and you have Gore for speed again if needed. Oh, and Rios is starting to hit a little better. Jay Bruce was the guy I thought we would go after and since I doubt that deal didn’t get done with Cueto today it is safe to say it won’t happen by Friday. Upton I think will cost too much $$$ for what he is worth. I think if you are willing to spend another 6-10 million on a piece before the deadline another stud pitcher is the place to look.
Hamels is rumored to be top the list for the Rangers and the Dodgers but what if the Royals sit around another day or two looking around at Hamels, Gray, Sale, or any other ace like players locked up for a few years and say fuck it lets go with a godfather offer get the guy this year and if all else fails we can trade in this winter or next year at the deadline. This is by far the ballsiest way of thinking but it could work. I know Sale and Gray are said to be not on the market but a big enough offer could get the deal done, get you a World Series ring, and you can restock the farm in a year. Hamels would probably be the cheapest in prospects because he is on the market currently. Sale being in the division is more or less a pipe dream but never the less it would be worth a call if you are ready to pull the trigger on a whopper of a deal. Gray is the best option for this wild man trade idea. He is good, he is cheaper, he is in Oakland and Billy likes to get creative and be ballsy.
The next option is to go after yet another rental pitcher with Price, Latos, Haren, and Jeff S..youspellit..ja all will cost you less than the 3 above but there is no chance of getting any prospects back. It is World Series or bust with another large chunk of the farm dying.
I personally like both ideas. I think this is the year to cash in the chips before all of the young talent we have becomes way too pricey to keep.
The last option is my least favorite not because of the player but because of the money. James Shields could be brought back into the clubhouse he took to the World Series last year but the Padres overpaid him in my mind and did the contract in the wrong order. His salary goes up each year after this year to $2o millionish each year. The $63 million owed to him is a ton for a guy that is getting older but you know he would fit in the clubhouse well. I think the Shields option is only viable if the Padres are willing to eat a $15-20 million of the deal or if they are willing to take 40 cents on the dollar in prospects and throw in an Upton or infielder.
The final what the fuck trade idea. Craig Kimbrel.
The Royals go will a pennant by bullpen and get Kimbrel. This won’t happen but could you image if it did?
Herrera, Davis, Holland, Kimbrel
Need I say more? You get 5 innings then NO RUNS FOR YOU!