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The Royals had a pretty quiet offseason, at least in the 2016 portion of it. They let Kendrys Morales go to the Blue Jays, made no move toward replacing him, left the rotation as is, and just sort of looked like a team hoping 2017 would go better than 2016 did with most of the same players returning. That's changed a bit in the New Year, though: Dayton Moore awoke from his slumber long enough to trade outfielder Jarrod Dyson to the Mariners for starting pitcher Nate Karns, and over the weekend, Kansas City added Brandon Moss to DH.
By themselves, this wouldn't be a whole lot, but now the Boston Globe's Nick Cafardo has the Royals linked to Jason Hammel, who for some reason has just kind of been sitting on free agency all winter even though there weren't many useful pitchers available to sign. Cafardo also mentions that the Royals could look into a trade for another starter, maybe to the Rays to ask about Alex Cobb or Jake Odorrizi, the latter of whom ended up in Tampa Bay because the Royals traded him there in the Wil Myers/James Shields deal before 2014.
The Royals are looking for another starter due to the tragic death of Yordano Ventura, who passed away in a car accident in the Dominican Republic just over a week ago. It's certainly not a situation anyone in Kansas City expected to be in, but rather than go back to what they were doing before 2017, when it looked as if they were giving up on the upcoming year after a disappointing season, the Royals seem to be trying once more. And in a division where no one besides the defending AL champion Indians has done much of anything, even a little bit of effort could pay off.
- Grant Brisbee's latest feature is a look at what free agents of yesteryear would have made today, when salaries have exploded for more reasons than just inflation.
- Randy Johnson — yes, that Randy Johnson — was playing in an alumni game at USC, and the 53-year-old pitcher just missed calling his shot a la Babe Ruth.
- Aubrey Huff was whining about protesters not having jobs because a lifetime in baseball has made him unaware of what weekends are, but don't worry, Twitter was there to pounce.
- Remember when Yankees fans were all about Rob Refsnyder?
- The Cubs won the World Series, but Beyond the Box Score is arguing that the Gleyber Torres trade doesn't look good in hindsight. I'm Team Flags Fly Forever, but not everyone is.
- The Blue Jays and White Sox are reportedly discussing a David Robertson trade.
- One reason Mike Napoli hasn't signed anywhere yet might be because he's looking for a two-year deal.
- While Seung Hwan Oh was historically great in 2016, the reliever isn't a lock to repeat that greatness for the Cardinals this year.
- Where has the old Billy Beane gone?