Royals Trade Super Man To Pirates!

According to MLB.com's Jenifer Langosch, the Kansas City Royals have traded young infielder Yamaico Navarro to the Pittsburgh Pirates for minor leaguers Brooks Pounders and Diego Goris.

Navarro came to the Royals just last summer, when they traded Mike Aviles to the Red Sox. He hasn't hit much in 42 major-league games, but he's got a .267/.343/.454 line in 75 triple-A games. Not bad for a versatile defender who just turned 24.

On the other hand, Navarro's not a good enough shortstop or second baseman to play those positions regularly, and he probably won't hit enough to play anywhere else. So he projects as a utility man; granted, perhaps a super utility man. But still a utility man. Not that the Royals couldn't use a super utility man as they make their run for American League Central glory.

Except there's one more thing.

Thursday morning, the Royals have the fifth pick in the annual Rule 5 draft. Granted, the odds are heavily against coming up with someone in the Rule 5 draft who's actually better than Yamaico Navarro. But baseball men love the Rule 5 draft because it gives them a chance to scout. And damn it all if baseball men don't love to scout.

Not that there's anything wrong with that. Trading Navarro opens up a slot on the Royals' 40-man roster, a spot which will likely be filled Thursday morning with a brand-new, more-exciting-than-Yamaico-Navarro player.

Minor-league pitcher Brooks Pounders and minor-league outfielder Diego Goris are both organizational depth, at best. A year from now, both might be looking into other lines of work.

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