It will likely be "a relatively quiet offseason" for the Royals, writes Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star. Here are some of the hot stove-related notes from Dutton's recent look ahead to the Royals' 2011 season.
- The payroll is expected to be in "the low $60MM range" next season, down from K.C.'s 2010 payroll of just under $75MM. This whole drop could be attributed to Jose Guillen's $12MM salary coming off the books.
- Speaking of Guillen, Dutton reports that "the days of shelling out millions to retread veterans for stopgap purposes appear over."
- There have been some rumors about Zack Greinke being on the trade block, but Dutton thinks the K.C. ace won't be moved this winter since his trade value will be higher at next year's trade deadline and in the 2011-12 offseason.
- Bruce Chen wants to re-sign in Kansas City and there appears to be mutual interest from the Royals. The club may "have too many promising left-handed prospects to offer Chen more than a one-year deal," but it's hard to imagine another club giving Chen multiple years.
- Dutton predicts the Royals will either deal or non-tender Brian Bannister. The right-hander made $2.3MM in 2010 and is entering his third arbitration year.
- With Jason Kendall set to miss part (or maybe all) of 2011 after rotator cuff surgery, Kansas City will be in the market for a cheap, defensive-minded veteran catcher.
- The team is looking for right-handed hitting and will probably "scour the bargain bins" for the likes of a Matt Diaz or a Cody Ross. Dutton notes, however, that if the Royals are particularly taken with a higher caliber of right-handed hitting corner outfielder, they would be "willing to shell out a few million for a good fit." Such a player would be all the more important to the club if David DeJesus is traded in the winter.