With the MLB trade deadline rapidly approaching and the rumors piling up, I figured it was time to take a look at the top five players the Royals should trade. This isn't necessarily who is most likely to be traded but, speaking from a strategic standpoint, who they should deal.
Of course you'll disagree with me, which is what the comments are for. Tell me where I'm right. Tell me where I'm wrong.
Here's the list from five to one:
5. David DeJesus
To be honest, I wouldn't be too interested in trading David DeJesus. He's probably more valuable to the Royals than just about any other team and the Royals seem know it. That's why their asking price is "silly" according to some reports. Others say they're "trying to hit a homerun" if they deal him. There's no doubt they're trying to win any trade involving him.
They know what they've got in him. He's proven, consistent and "gets it" when it comes to being on a team like the Royals that lose year in and year out.
The problem (and it's a good problem): He's having a career year. At his age, it's not crazy to think that this will be the best year of his career. For GM Dayton Moore and the Royals, this is something they realize.
As far as the trade market is concerned, DeJesus' value is very high. It's almost like a perfect storm. He's affordable over the next season-and-a-half in his contract. He plays multiple positions meaning some GMs could be killing two birds with one stone by acquiring him. He hits for average. He's a team guy. He "deserves" to play on a winner.
There are lots and lots of reasons why trading him on or before July 31 would be the best move for the Royals and their future.
At the same time, trading him would create the fans to think, "Once again, the Royals trade away their best player."
Do the Royals make the best baseball move or listen to the fans?
4. Mike Aviles
It's been reported that there's interest from some teams including the Red Sox.
This one won't be long. If there's interest in Aviles, trade him. He doesn't provide major value to the Royals anymore and the Red Sox, who are in a pennant race, could conceivably overpay for his services because of said pennant race (unlikely and we're talking little value either way here).
Aviles isn't a significant piece of the future and I'm surprised there are teams interested in his services. If someone wants him, let them pay for him.
3. Scott Podsednik
Here's an interesting scenario for the Royals. Scott Podsednik is working on a one-year deal with escalators that could push it to a mutual option in 2011.
Podsednik has good speed and can still be a pain for defenses. He's also a solid outfielder.
He has value to other teams but he's still a good locker room guy in Kansas City. If the Royals get the right deal, they should move him but there's no shame in keeping him.
2. Kyle Farnsworth
If you had asked at the beginning of the season who should be traded at the deadline, I would've jokingly included Kyle Farnsworth under the condition that of course no one will actually trade for him.
And then a funny thing happened. Farnsworth started playing well. Not All-Star level but competent, which is all you need in a trade deadline like this that doesn't feature a lot of depth.
Farnsworth's salary isn't attractive to the Royals -- he'll have a little over $2 million remaining in his final year -- but it may be to a contender. Every team can use more relievers. Farnsworth is playing well and history would suggest that won't last much longer so the Royals might as well get the most bang for their buck while they can.
1. Jose Guillen
Jose Guillen should be the number one player on the "To Be Traded" list for the Royals this year. There are a handful of reasons why it makes plenty of sense to move him for essentially anything in return.
First, Guillen's heading into the final season of a three-year, $36 million deal. That contract is among the highest on the team. Think about this: Zack Greinke signed a four-year, $36 million contract. Greinke versus Guillen. Hmm....
Second, Guillen's not the type of player the Royals want on the team as the season winds down. The Royals aren't making the playoffs and, the way things have been going as of late, they won't even make things slightly interesting down the stretch. Sure, Guillen would present the perception to the fans that they're not giving up and the fans probably like his quirky attitude and off-the-wall comments now and again but the fact of the matter is that clubhouses are more often than not ruined by guys like that -- and not enhanced. There's no reason for a player on the club to be telling a reporter, "Fundamentally, this is among the worst team in baseball." Guillen tried to save himself by saying later in that FOX Sports Kansas City interview that he likes the direction Ned Yost is taking the team but, when taking into account his earlier comments, it's hard to take him seriously.
Third, Guillen's value is nearing a high for the season. He's got 15 home runs and over 50 RBIs which are solid but not great numbers. On a team like the Royals, they look even better because you can add "team leader in home runs and RBIs" to his profile.
The point is that if the Royals are looking to trade someone -- and they should be -- they should take just about any offer for Guillen.