The Royals were one of the first teams to make a move -- any move -- this off-season with their trade of Melky Cabrera to the Giants for Jonathan Sanchez and a prospect, Ryan Verdugo. Today, they moved Verdugo to their 40-man roster to protect him from the Rule-5 Draft.
Don't forget, the Royals were earlier linked to a rumor trading for Jair Jurrjens and Martin Prado in exchange for Lorenzo Cain, one of the top prospects that is now due to play without Cabrera in the way. With Melky gone, the next most trade-able pieces are DH Billy Butler and highly-touted prospect Will Myers. And there's always Joakim Soria, if you're into overpaying for 3 outs. Here's the latest:
Verdugo placed on 40-man roster - Bob Dutton
"The Royals added left-handed pitcher Ryan Verdugo, whom they acquired earlier this month, to their 40-man roster Friday before the 11 p.m. deadline."
Will baseball give Mission 2012 a little boost? - Kansas City Star
"We will soon learn more specifics about the new restraints involving spending in the amateur draft, and this will be something to look into. The Royals, of course, have quite successfully used baseball’s current rules to build a top-tier farm system. And now, they will probably have to adapt."
Future Shock: Royals Top 11 Prospects - Baseball Prospectus
"Despite graduating five players from last year's Top 11 to create one of the most exciting young teams in the majors, this system remains among the best."
Royals: Youth cause for enthusiasm – USATODAY.com
"...For now, though, pitching remains a focus, especially the rotation. Moore picked up another left-hander, Jonathan Sanchez, from the San Francisco Giants for center fielder Melky Cabrera this offseason, continuing a practice of flipping veteran players to further stock the Royals system. The deal also opens a spot for prospect Lorenzo Cain."