Of the two smart free agent deals that Kansas City Royals general manager Dayton Moore grabbed this offseason for his starting outfield, it seems one has more staying power than the other. With recent words that Jeff Francoeur is wanting to stay in KC, the rumor from Ken Rosenthal is that Moore is attempting to trade Melky Cabrera instead of Francoeur in the hopes of landing some near-ready pitching talent at the MLB trade deadline by the end of this month.
Francoeur is having a decent year overall, although he's definitely slid from the devastating first month he placed on AL pitchers back in April. For the year, Frenchy has a line of .263/.308/.439 and seems well liked in and around the organization. On Cabrera's behalf, he's the better hitter of the two with a .203/.331/.4450 line. Francoeur does have an mutual option for next year.
At only 26, some team is bound to be intrigued by Cabrera as a possible outfield fit -- not just for this year -- and acquiring him now would allow for some time to check out the merchandise, so to speak. He's got a solid bat and won't embarrass himself at the plate, and the potential is there for some solid gap power. He also has several years as a member of the Yankees under his belt that brings some postseason experience.
Some possible destinations? While Cabrera didn't hit well in his quick run in the NL East with Atlanta, the Phillies are looking for an outfield bat. The Giants might come calling depending on what happens with Carlos Beltran, and the same goes for the Tigers. There's a lot of player movement expected in the next week, so Cabrera might be a second or third option for some team -- meaning a deal might not happen until the eleventh hour. For now, the Royals hold the chips and wait to cash them in.