After flirting with dealing Jeff Francoeur at the MLB trading deadline, it seems that the Kansas City Royals outfielder got his wish after all. Francoeur was very vocal around the deadline that he wanted to stay in KC, and the Royals have been impressed with Frenchy, even as they discussed him as a trade possibility. But those rumors are gone as of today with the two-year extension worth $13.5 given out today by general manager Dayton Moore.
Eno Sarris over at FanGraphs.com says the deal is good for Francoeur but it's also a square deal for the Royals. "A two year extension to a corner outfield in his peak ages is not going to cripple the Royals, and neither will it suppress any prospects that are ready to go. Wil Myers needs more seasoning and Lorenzo Cain is a center fielder or he should remain in the minor leagues. Even if Francoeur steals fewer bags and takes a step back in the power department, he’ll most likely put up close to an average wOBA next year. On the Royals (team wOBA .319), that’ll be useful"
CBS Sports' C. Trent Rosecrans agrees that it's a nice move for both. He writes, "It's actually a nice move for the Royals who are building for the future well beyond the two years they have Francoeur under contract."
Joe Posnanski disagrees a bit and considers it the bland sort of maneuver that the Royals have been known for over the last few years. He writes, "With no prospect pushing the Royals, they felt comfortable giving right field to Francoeur for the next two years. I understand it. I don't think this is a terrible move by the Royals. It's more like a "Why not?" move."
The quotes coming from team brass like Ned Yost point as much to his clubhouse leadership as they do his on-field accomplishments. That could be putting the proverbial lipstick on the pig, or perhaps that's something that's hard for outsiders to both understand and quantify. Either way, the Royals have now locked up their right field position for the foreseeable future -- that is, until next year's trading deadline.