The Royals might be baseball’s worst run franchise. Money may be an
excuse, but signing the likes of Jose Guillen and Kyle Farnsworth is
not going to help at all. In fact, bad management is much more
hindering to a club than lack of money. “Lack of money” means it is
more likely that the club experiences downs along with the ups–more
difficult to sustain ones winning ways. But bad management will not
only put an organization down, it will also keep it down.
The Royals are exactly what a poor run organization is.
So here are a few ways to fix them, most are obvious, maybe a few that aren’t…
- Goodbye, Guillen: Simple enough. Player x sucks, release
him or trade him and absorb his salary. Roster spots are valuable.
The signing was ludicrous the day the deal was inked. And it is even
more ludicrous now seeing that Jose Guillen has been quite putrid for a
corner outfielder. Among right fielders that qualify the past three
seasons, Guillen has the absolute worst ‘WAR’ (keep in mind he has
played 49 games in left too). And has been worth exactly $1 million
dollars over that time, according to Fangraphs anyway–which should be
taken with a grain of salt (if that is the right cliche phrase to be
used). But seriously, this guy is a horrible baseball player. Rid of
him, let someone younger play, and chalk it up as a sunk cost. Because
whether or not he plays in 2010, it will be “lost” money. Bad teammate
+ bad player + listed on the Mitchell Report = not worth $12 million.
At least according to my calculations.
- Trade Gil Meche: The difference between Meche and Guillen is
not salary. They make the same amount. The difference is that one
player sucks, and the other is actually of quality. Meche has been a
blessing for the Mariners. Not just because he has pitched fairly
well–after all he should for $12 million. But because he has given
the fans one of only a few good players to care about. But
Meche–unlike “albatross”–has trade value–maybe the Royals get a
little in return as well… Meche has been worth every penny since
signing. And the Royals could probably swing him to a contender come
the trade deadline and pick up a decent piece PLUS, they may not have
to pick up any of his salary. The Yankees may happily pick up Meche if
their “back-end of the rotation” flails out mid-season ( I know they
say they are intent on cutting back, but if needed, will they decline
based on money?–s0mething in which they have tons of). And of course,
a few other teams may pick up the tab for Meche as well…
- Do something, anything with Yuni: This trade was ridiculed,
and rightfully so. Not only did they go and get the worst shortstop in
baseball, they agreed to pay him for two more seasons. The Mariners
are picking up 33 percent of the tab in 2010, and 25 percent in 2011.
So the Royals are only paying him $2 million and $3 million in the
years he is under contract. Then, they must buy him out for $2 mill in
2012. So, okay, Yuni won’t prevent them from doing anything really.
And releasing him wouldn’t hurt their pockets too much if they chose to
find another outside alternative. They could simply keep him, but if I
were running the team, I would probably outright release him. But I
guess they need someone to play each position, as there are only so
many players they can be paying at one time.
- Keep Jason Kendall as the backup: Kendall is believed to have the ability to mentor and help players, younger players, develop. I wouldn’t have signed him–probably not
anyway. But now that they have him, then let him do his thing. As
long as he is the backup, maybe he can help tutor the less experienced
ballplayers. The Royals might believe in this sort of thing, and I
cannot say that it doesn’t exist. I don’t like paying money for
intangibles, but a small amount of money seems like it won’t hurt too
- And to the controversial: Explore a trade of Joakim Soria.
Soria is a live arm, a very talented closer. But the Royals have
placed him in a position where they seemingly only want him to close.
I would have given starting another shot seeing how they aren’t going
to win anyway. But that was their choice. Now they have a known
commodity–a very good closer. But solid starter would make more
sense, to me anyway, and would have more value. They could explore a
trade now, or wait until near the deadline. but Soria has value, and
some team desperate for someone to shut down the ninth inning may take
a chance on him. Especially if they are in contention, in a big
market, and saves are being blown near the deadline. We all know how
overblown the combination of those three things can be. If the Royals
can pick up an everyday player or two, for the future, then they should
try and make it happen–assuming they feel the “return” is worth
surrendering one of baseball’s top closers. And I know I suggested
that Papelbon be traded too, but I am just not a fan of relief pitchers
I guess 🙂 (On that note, I am less of an advocate on trading Pap now,
as the Red Sox don’t have quite as many options in the pen. But still
- Find a new GM: Or find a new philosophy. One thing
stat-guys do well is point out idiocy. And since they do it
collectively, their point is emphasized exponentially. And acquiring
Yuni–and inking Jose Guillen–well, those were both idiotic moves.
Something needs to change, and fast, otherwise the Royals only hopes of
winning anything lies in the hands of whether or not the division can
be won with a total of 81 victories.