The Royals have a Cub-like situation – five outfielders. You’ve got the injury-prone guy who still might have something left (Cliff Floyd/Reggie Sanders), the rookie stud who needs to play every day (Felix Pie/Billy Butler), the developing, pre-arb solid guy (Matt Murton/Mark Teahen), and the veteran league average guy (Jacque Jones/Emil Brown). I couldn’t think of a clever link between Alfonso Soriano and David DeJesus though.
Since the injury-prone guy is often on the DL, that leaves the Jones/Brown type as the one to trade. The Cubs haven’t had any luck finding the right deal for Jones, though. And the Royals would probably have to eat most of Brown’s contract to move him. Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star says a release is possible.
The Royals at least have the DH spot to fill the gaps, if and when Mike Sweeney lands on the DL. But I still don’t get the Butler call-up. Unlike the Cubs, the Royals don’t have a shot at the playoffs. Their outfield doesn’t need Butler’s defense. Why start his clock early? It would’ve made more sense to play Brown every day in left and hope for a couple of 3 HR, 15 RBI type months from him. Then you find a little more desperate team in June or July and get a decent arm in return. Now that Butler’s up, there’s no chance to build up Brown’s trade value.