The Royals took a second cost-cutting step last night and added a pair of controllable right-handers, acquiring Jesse Hahn and minor leaguer Heath Fillmyer from the Athletics in a trade that sent lefty Ryan Buchter, first baseman/outfielder Brandon Moss and a reported $3.25MM in salary relief to help cover some of Moss’ contract. It’s the second cost-cutting measure of the winter for the rebuilding Royals, who’ve also traded Joakim Soria and controllable lefty Scott Alexander in a three-team deal with the White Sox and Dodgers.
Here’s the latest out of Kansas City in the wake of last night’s deal…
- “The economic part of it is very real to us,” GM Dayton Moore tells Rustin Dodd of the Kansas City Star. Dodd notes that the cost savings could be put toward a contract to bring Eric Hosmer back to Kansas City — a notion to which the Royals are reportedly very open in spite of their rebuilding initiatives. The Royals, according to Dodd, hope to open the season with a payroll in the $105-110MM range. That’s a tall order, considering they’re still still projected for a $113.7MM payroll even after shedding some of the Moss contract. Dodd notes that further salary-cutting trades could be on the horizon, though Moore stressed that no such move was close. (Nor, the GM said, is a free-agent signing.) The Royals could still jettison Jason Hammel’s remaining $9MM salary (plus a $2MM option buyout) or market Kelvin Herrera and his $7.9375MM contract for the 2018 season.
- Dennis Lin of the San Diego Union Tribune reports that the Royals’ offer to Hosmer is believed to already be larger than the one made by the Padres, and freeing up some cash in the Moss trade only further benefits the Royals’ chances. The Padres would consider “tweaking” their offer if negotiations came down to a slim margin, he adds, but to date the Friars haven’t shown much of a willingness to substantially increase their bid.
- With Hahn out of minor league options, he’ll compete for a rotation job this coming spring, Moore told Dodd (in the previously-linked column). The righty has been plagued by injuries throughout his career, but he showed plenty of promise in 2014-15 with the Padres and A’s. He’ll vie for a rotation spot alongside Wily Peralta and Nate Karns (returning from TOS surgery). Danny Duffy and Ian Kennedy are locked into spots, of course, while Hammel (if he’s not traded) and Jake Junis figure to lock down spots as well. Fillmyer and Oaks are also on the 40-man roster, with other 40-man options including Sam Gaviglio, Eric Skoglund, Scott Barlow and Miguel Almonte.
- Alcides Escobar said yesterday after his one-year deal was announced that he had offers from other clubs but jumped at the chance to return to the Royals (link via MLB.com’s Jeffrey Flanagan). “I’ve been here for seven years, and I feel like I belong here in Kansas City,” said Escobar. “I got some offers outside. For me, I came back because I think it’s better here, that’s why I’m coming back.” Moore was noncommittal when it came to what the Escobar signing meant for young Raul Mondesi Jr., though he suggested that it might be tough for Mondesi to get everyday at-bats in the Majors. Mondesi is still in the team’s plans, though, the GM added, noting that he could play second base and is “good enough to play center field” as well.
I would be SHOCKED if Alcides Escobar got offers from other MLB teams. I could see someone signing him to a minor league deal with an invite to ST. But I can’t see another team offering him a MLB contract.
name 30 better shortstops
Manny Machado, Tim Beckham, JJ Hardy, Bogaerts, Didi, Gleyber Torres, Tulo, Aledmys Diaz, Tim Anderson, Lindor, Iglesias, Jorge Polanco, Simba, Cozart, Semien, Elvis, Correa, Dansby, Jose Reyes, JP Crawford, Turner, Baez, Addy Russell, Arcia, DeJong, CO, Story, Seager, Galvis, Brandon Crawford
I think the ghost of Honus Wagner could still play a better shortstop than Escobar
“Play a better shortstop” is misleading. Escobar is still very good defensively. He just has very obvious challenges at the plate.
He said name 30 better shortstops, not name 30 shortstops.
Half of that list is garbage and players who haven’t done anything at the MLB level
Thank you. Im fighting a wierd losing battle with a small group of royals fans who have lost their freaking mind with the escobar signing. Im finding out how rediculous the kc fan base is with his signing by reading how actual intelligent fan bases are.
Jose Reyes lol
Esky has mediocre defense abilities for a shortstop and a well below average bat. No real plate discipline and doesn’t make the plays he used to. It’s a cheap signing that even a team like the Royals can afford. It’s not like they’re trying to pay him 7+ mil a year to do nothing *cough* Omar Infante signing *cough*.
Really?? That’s your argument?? Wow…leave the baseball talk to the adults
I’m not that surprised, they were probably similar 1 year deals. He’s a decent shortstop, just not a great bat. It sort of balances itself out with the glove.
I would expect that the other offers were for utility infielder. KC likely the only team that would let him stay at SS.
Probably San Diego and the reds
San Diego needed a back up short stop and still does. You know someone that can play all over the infield. The reds need a veteran middle infielder. Could be more but that sounds very logical
Why he is a good shortstop. He would improve numerous teams
no hes not, and no he wouldnt
Escobar had one of the worst OPS+ in the history of the league.
Name one aspect that he’d improve a team…
He has had a negative DRS for 4 straight seasons. He is not a good defensive shortstop. He is at best a mediocre defensive shortstop. Combine that with his extreme offensive deficiencies and there is absolutely nothing in his game on the field that makes signing him to anything other than a minor league deal worthwhile.
There are many places – including Fangraphs – that have Escobar as a top 10 shortstop.
So your using cherry picked defensive ratings that are subjective at best to make your point. I will say his first move isnt as quick as it used to be but i still see a top 10 defensive shortstop. And im pretty sure i could cherry pick some numbers to back it up if i had the time or desire.
Nah! If it’s more than money & Hosmer has only the KC and SD offer, should be a no brainer… the top 100 prospects lists published last week gave SD leverage.
Hosmer has seen that prospect rankings don’t mean squat. Just ask him about 2010 when he went from top 25 to out of the top 100…he knows KC can build a proven winner, he’s seen it.
KC has won one division is 33 years lol
Two actually, 1985 and 2015. Interesting though, they won the WS both times.
he means after the 1985 World Series they have one, hence the 33 years since.
2 division titles in the last 40-some years isn’t a proven winner
14 division titles in 15 years isn’t either (1 WS win)
depends on how you define winner, especially in this context. Who would sign with a team that made the playoffs twice in 30 years over a team that gives you a shot at a WS every year? Only thing KC offers Hosmer is familiarity. If thats what he wants, more power to him.
Seriously you do not know in the 33 years you mention that KC has one 2 world championships and 3 pennants?
Oh but its all about division titles, right dummy?
when you’re referring to being a “proven winner,” yeah… making the playoffs more than twice in the last (fine.. you guys win..) 32 years doesn’t warrant that title. Hosmer has been alive for exactly two playoff births.
The Phillies and Marlins aren’t proven winners, but they’ve won just as many pennants in the last 20 years.
No, the Royals aren’t “proven winners,”
OMG you think prospect ranking give SD leverage? Haha
Would you rather go to a team that has a bright future or no future?
Having “prospects” doesn’t guarantee a bright future. I doubt JDM cares who may come up 3 years from now. FAs are going to be looking at the 25 man roster, if they even look past the $$$.
I really don’t get the mind-set here, and maybe Royals fans can fill in. Without dissing Hosmer, would the Royals really try to clear multiple useful players just to clear salary space so they could devote 20% of their payroll to one player?
I suppose they aren’t going to win one way or another. Hosmer is at least a draw/sign of good faith to your average fan. Moss, Alexander, Buchter, and Soria can complement a decent team but on a poor team they aren’t moving the needle. Though they’ll need to be replaced with someone at some cost as well unless they’re filling their spots with minor leaguers.
As of today, the Royals would have to move $24+ million in salary to sign Hosmer. Who are they trading away to get rid of that much salary?
Gordon and Kennedy are untradable.
Duffy? That’s $14 million. Hammel too? Not sure he can be traded, but if so they are almost there. Perez or Herrera would bring them to a level of payroll that would allow them to sign Hosmer and still be in the $105-110 million level they are saying they need to be at for 2018.
Now the question is would Hosmer even sign with a team that is not only missing Cain and Moustakas, but also Duffy, Hammel, and Perez or Herrera?
Somehow I don’t think he would. It doesn’t seem like signing Hosmer is an option for the Royals unless they are willing to both lose and raise payroll at the same time.
The 110 number is just general BS. DM has said they’re lowering payroll before or at their limit and then gone over. He’ll sign Hosmer if the cost isn’t prohibitive. I think the royals will go 7/140. It’s a dumb move but we’ll do it.
Most of the guys we’re clearing are not huge losses. I love Jack, but his days as an elite reliever are in the past, and Hammel and Moss have been awful. I think the mindset is Hosmer could still be a good player the next time our window is open and would make an excellent mentor for the younger players in the meantime. Also, justified or not Hos is extremely popular in KC and the gold PR of re-signing him is worth something. I suspect Mr. Glass has committed to just eating Hosmer’s contract if it looks like it’s going to restrict our ability to build our a roster if/when we’re in contention again. After all, it only matters if it affects other deals. Otherwise it’s just spending that WalMart money.
I’m not going to defend the “proven winner” statement, but you can’t compare the Royals organization from the day Ewing Kauffman died until the day Dayton Moore took over the team. Those ensuing 15 years basically didn’t happen.
Maybe the Royals should preemptively retire Hoz’s number as an incentive to bring him back.
I think Duffy is the next to be traded. Would cost a team like the Brewers less $ than Darvish or Cobb and less in prospect capital than Odorizzi.
Duffy will cost more in prospects than Odorizzi lol. Odorizzi is average at best
Not a chance, look at the contracts and they’re not too different in terms of results
Odorizzi’s FIP was 5.40 or something, had a career high walk rate, and gave up 2 HRs per 9 inning.
Duffy is legit good and making less than market value
Duffy also has a DUI and domestic violence arrest recently.
Lol, does he kick his dog too?
That’s not going to hurt his trade value. Only reason it hurt Chapmans was because the suspension length was not known.
Domestic Violence? What in the world are you talking about – stop making things up.
What domestic violence charge against duffy.
I think the royals did well here. I may be undervaluing Buchter because he has managed to perform much better than the metrics would indicate. But they got a back an end of the rotation option and moved over half of a contract of a guy who might not have gotten a MLB offer this offseason. Maybe I’m off though.
If I were the Royals, I think I would rather bring back Moustakas since he would be cheaper and then sign a 1B.
It’s not like Hosmer is a draw. If he was then fans would have been filling seats prior to 2014
Actually yes, in KC, Hosmer is a draw.
Hosmer is nuts if he doesn’t go to San Diego. They have a deep system and are on the rise. The Royals are “rebuilding” but have nothing to rebuild around.
Also, Southern California v western Missouri.
Yeah but taxes are a pretty big swing in favor of KC.
Pretty sure the state income tax amounts to a huge difference in actual take home pay between the two states. So all things equal, KCs offer sounds like it’s more in pretax and much more in post tax. Something to consider.
The difference between California and Missouri state taxes for a $20 million per year contract would be about $478,000 per year. Round up to $3.5 million over a 7 year deal.
And SD is still a small market whose farm system guarantees nothing. You are talking 7 year deals KC can finish rebuild by then too snd do not discount playing in one City your entire career where you won a championship cherishes by the fan base and are a local hero
Or you can live in San Diego where it’s 70’s in the dead of winter, he’ll be loved wherever he goes
You make no sense in this post.. kc is also considered a small market team. How is KCs rebuild guaranteed but SDs is forsure to fail? Even tho Pads rebuild is waaay farther along and much deeper farm system. I mean cmon bro common sense…
I am glad the Padres are not budging much from their offer. Hosmer can help them, but can also hurt them if they grossly overpay him.
As for KC are they rebuilding or not? Being stuck in the middle is the worst spot to be. Signing Hosmer if just beginning a rebuild would be a terrible move, but if they think they can compete still then it’d work.
I agree. They’ll stand pat with their offer and hopefully not increase it too much. If Boras says it’s still not good enough, then so be it. If the Royals want to pay him all of that money, they can go right ahead.
In the article they state that the Royals would like to be at a payroll of $105-110 million in 2018 and they are at $114 million today. They would have to clear another $24 million in payroll for 2018 just to sign Hosmer to a $20 million per season deal.
Whatever contract Hosmer gets from the Padres or Royals is likely to be back-loaded.
Have we ever gone into February with a majority of the free agents unsigned? This seems like uncharted
I still don’t get why they signed Ian Kennedy to that contract
Could there be a Danny Duffy for Domingo Santana trade? What else would have to be included?
more going to KC.
KC is rebuilding, so they dont get extra control in this trade.
Plus Hosmer already eats for free in KC for the rest of his life, I’m sure.
It’s too early in the Padres rebuild to spend that kind of money on a 1st baseman. He’s not going to hit 28 dingers with half his games at Petco.
Not much difference between Petco and Kauffman in terms of HR.
I don’t think SD has the upper hand. Frankly Boras probably just is using them as leverage. It doesn’t make much sense, apart from nice weather and good but unproven prospects, for Hosmer to go to SD.
That said, KC doesn’t offer much hope for him if he wants to win; even less so than the Pads.
My bet is he’s waiting for a contender to give him a legit offer
Royals were absolutely robbed, salary dump or not. Buchter is a beast who will continue to do his thing year after year, and Brandon Moss will provide his typical power.
Hahn is not only on the decline, but may actually be finished altogether. Guy has DFA written all over him. I don’t know much about Fillmyer, and his numbers look decent, but who knows how his development will go. As everyone is well aware, pitching prospects are a hit-or-miss proposition.
Bottom line, there are many more different ways to shred salary off of your books other than executing lopsided trades.
Buchter’s 2nd half in KC was really deceptive. He lost almost all his missed bats and K’s, and survived on a lot of batted ball luck. He’s primed to come WAY back to Earth in 2018.
Absolutely robbed! Ha!
First – in this low level of a trade I’m not sure anybody can get “absolutely robbed”. Second – the Royals saved $5 mil and got two pitchers with a lot of team control both of which have a very good chance of seeing ML time the next few seasons.
So, no. They weren’t robbed. It was a perfectly reasonable trade fir both teams.
That crack of the bat will sound louder in the cold empty Kauffman stadium!
I can appreciate what the royals are doing, trying to keep their homegrown local superstar in kc till he retires. Wish the bucs couldve done that with Cutch or the rays kept Longo. I think having an aging superstar like those guys is a massive boost to the franchise despite being a bit cost prohibitive. It definietly helped the twins last yr having Mauer around.
“Good clubhouse guy”
Slow on the driveway.com
“NL West not that good”
Count to potato.com