MLB Trade Deadline, Rumors & Roundup: Kansas City Royals Have Outfielders To Move

As we approach the July 31st MLB trade deadline, everyone will be wondering just who is available, and at what cost. For answers, we've gone to our network of baseball bloggers, who will provide summaries on a team-by-team basis. Here we present the situation faced by the Kansas City Royals, as written by Royals Review's Will McDonald.

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MLB Trade Deadline, Rumors & Roundup: Kansas City Royals Have Outfielders To Move

HOW THE ROYALS GOT TO WHERE THEY ARE

Quietly, the Royals have played .500 baseball for the last month and a half. Unfortunately, they started the season horribly, and are once again hopelessly out of contention.

BUYER OR SELLER?

They definitely won't be buying, but it's unclear that they'll be selling much either. Not that they might not want to. The Royals have reportedly been shopping a number of players for months, yet the days continue to slip by without action. The team (reportedly again) shopped 3B-IF Alberto Callaspo during Spring Training, couldn't move him, then ended up deciding to make him the starting 3B over Alex Gordon. Now Gordon is in Omaha and is bizarrely being converted to an OF, which probably means now the Royals will trade Callaspo and make Pedro Feliz the 3B next year. Because that's what dumb teams do.

Trade talk in Kansas City is dominated by two players: OF David DeJesus and DH Jose Guillen. DeJesus has been available for at least a year now, but apparently the Royals are asking for a very good package in return, because he's yet to be traded. Although he's an underrated player, DeJesus is likely to be one of the most attractive players on the market at this year's deadline. DeJesus is having a career season, hitting .332/.399/.481, and has a good defensive reputation in the outfield. Signed to a modest contract, DeJesus is only owed around $2 million for the remainder of this season and has a $6 million dollar club option for 2011.

The Royals would also desperately like to move Jose Guillen, a dream that doesn't seem as laughable as it did a few months ago. Guillen is an enigmatic personality and has had a bizarre season. In April, amidst a power surge, Guillen revealed that he nearly died in the off-season due to blood clots in his legs. Then Guillen slumped badly, only to rebound in June with a 21-game hitting streak. The majority of that streak, however, was singles based, as blisters on his feet have robbed Guillen of any ability to drive the ball. Guillen has 13 homers on the year, but isn't a good bet to top 20 on the year with the way he's playing. He's horrible defensively and is "only" owed about $6 million for the rest of the season, but he has posted an OBP of .343 (great for him) and may have something left for a stupid team.

There's also some chance that the Royals might trade Kyle Farnsworth, who has become a forgotten man on the roster. After opening 2009 as the team's setup man, Farnsworth was quickly demoted after early struggles. Now, the Royals only use him in low leverage situations, although he's posted decent numbers. He still throws hard, and owns a 2.27 ERA in 31.2 innings this season. He can be had for just about anything.

WHAT DO THE ROYALS NEED?

The Royals really aren't set anywhere, although they have a bad GM, so they might look for specific positions or roles when considering prospects. The Royals fancy their minor league pitching, so they might look for position player prospects, especially in the outfield.

WILL THE ROYALS MAKE A MOVE?

After a furious start, Dayton Moore has been curiously conservative when it comes to deadline deals in recent years. GMs tend to like their own players, and Moore definitely fits that category. Even with his recent hitting streak, it's still difficult to imagine that Jose Guillen will get traded unless the player coming back is so bad that it's a meaningless deal. The key is finding a good package for DeJesus, though the Royals may have to lower their asking price. Non-elite players just don't bring back big prospects any more.

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