Hot Stove Update: Thanksgiving Edition
While you were traveling to Grandma's house for Turkey Day, the Kansas City Star addressed a few things regarding the Royals' offseason pursuits:
Now that free agents Mark Grudzielanek and Tony Graffanino are seeking three-year deals in a player-friendly market, the Royals are taking a harder look at staying with the status quo — Andres Blanco — at second base.
I'd still rather play Blanco at shortstop and Don Murphy at second just so the Royals would show Angel Berroa the door, but giving Blanco an everyday job wouldn't be the worst thing in the world. Hit him ninth, minimize his at-bats, and watch him dazzle onlookers with defensive acrobatics like he displayed this past September. He's going to make a LOT of outs, but at least he'd be fun to watch, right?
The Royals also appear cool toward free agents Pokey Reese and D’Angelo Jimenez.
No Pokey is okey-dokey by me, but unless the rumors about Jimenez's problem-causing exploits in the clubhouse are true, I don't see any reason why the club SHOULDN'T be hard after him to play to Berroa's left. He gets on base, hits for a little power, and is still in the productive phase of his career. From only a dependable production standpoint, I'd take him over Grudzielanek and Graffanino in a heartbeat.
The Royals appear to have the framework in placed for a two-year deal with free-agent reliever Elmer Dessens, but the two sides are still working out details for what is believed to be a $3.4 million package.
I suppose he's the "bridge guy" Allard Baird's been looking for, but couldn't a six-year free agent like Brad Baker do the same thing for less money, all the while toting a higher ceiling? Whatever. Elmer's a decent pitcher who'll make sure the kids keep their heads glued on straight.
Thanks, I'll be here all week.
The bidding for outfielder Brian Giles, whom the Royals once targeted as their top choice among free-agent hitters, has now reached $33 million for three years. That’s too rich for the Royals.
Really? I thought the Royals had $22 million to spend with Mike Sweeney's contract being off the books (or close to it) by the time a Brian Giles three-year deal would be up. Frontload it or backload it, there's no reason why the Royals can't afford a premier player at an average rate of $11M a season. Hell, they're doing it right now.
Hey Allard -- Man up, pony up, and/or cowboy up and stay in the Giles sweepstakes until it gets ridiculous. He can mash now, and he'll still be mashing in 2008.