The Royals are expected to become a team that will sell at the non-waiver trade deadline this summer, a rival general manager told Jon Heyman of FanRag Sports.
The GM told Heyman that Kansas City, which is off to a dismal 3-13 start, is a “slam dunk” to make trades because they have some big assets on the cheap, including star third baseman Mike Moustakas, ace Danny Duffy and closer Kelvin Herrera. Starter Ian Kennedy, Infielder Whit Merrifield, first baseman Lucas Duda and outfield Jon Jay were also mentioned as players who could possibly be dealt by the July 31 deadline.
Moustakas returned to the Royals on a one-year, $5.6 million deal that included $2.2 million in incentives after having a rough free agency this past winter. Moustakas is having a nice start to the year, slashing .348/.368/.636 in 16 games, and would be an incredible bargain for a team. However, the rival GM told Heyman that the 29-year-old third baseman may still face the issue that plagued him during free agency.
“They’d still have to find a contending team that needs a third baseman,’’ the rival GM said to Heyman.
Heyman said the Royals had talked about possibly dealing Duffy, Merrifield and “others” during the winter, but nothing ever came to fruition, especially after not being able to bring back first baseman Eric Hosmer. Duffy is only in the second year of a five-year, $65 million and is under control for three more seasons.
Herrera would be a rental for any team, as he is only pitching on a one-year, $7.94 million contract. He, along with Moustakas, would bring a ton of playoff experience (career 1.26 ERA in 22 appearances).
Duda and Jay would also be rental bats that teams could get for cheap, as they are only making $3.5 million and $3 million, respectively. Kennedy is doing well this year and he has three years left on his five-year, $70 million deal.