There once was a young lad who grew up in Kansas City and wanted nothing more than a good baseball team. This fella, lets call him Zeets, saw his dreams come true the magical summer of 2003. The kid was hooked from that moment on. He can't get enough of one of the worst franchises in professional sports, the kind of dedication that you have to admire.
This is guest article number two, written by one of my friends and left completely untouched by me (first one can be found here). I always tell my friends if they write something I'll put it up. It works best on topics that I don't cover, like the terrible sport of baseball. Without further ado, here's my man's thoughts on the Royals trade of David Dejesus.
Written by Matt Zeets:
Thank God we finally got rid of David Dejesus. I was drained from watching his gold-glove caliber defense go wasted in the corners, and his hustle go wasted on such a long season and such a poor team. Sure, he was able to squeeze out a .318 average last year, but after dealing with a .289 average for his career, he owed us for all the grief. I was also sick of watching him get put in the leadoff spot simply because of his career .360 on-base percentage. Finally I was tired of his façade of being a good guy that got along with all the players and fans as well as anyone. He may have had most of Kansas City tricked, but a true Royals fan would will be happy to see #9 leaving KC for good. The only downside to this trade is that he is still in the AL and we will have to see him on occasion.
So I’m not that good of a mock-serious writer. I tried. In all seriousness though, trading David Dejesus is the right move on paper. We have had an abundance of outfielders in the past few years and as much as I hate to admit it, we need more pop at the corner outfield positions than Mr. Dejesus provides. Furthermore, with plenty of 1st and 3rd baseman coming through our system, I would not be surprised to see the Royals try out more than just Alex Gordon in the outfield. Dejesus is due $6 million this year, and will be up for free agency after that. If he had not gotten injured shortly before the trade deadline last year, he probably would have been moved then. While not a prototypical corner outfielder, Dejesus offers a balance in all areas of the game that is still valued more than the Royals can afford. As we’ve learned too many times in the past, the Royals cannot pay every player we bring up through the system. You have to pick your battles and sign the guys that you can build championship teams around like Greinke and Soria and let the well-rounded, lovable, center-fielder made corner outfielder, leadoff man that averages less than 7 steals a year go.
The Royals also got good value for Dejesus. While I stole this stat from another article, the Royals had an American League worst 4.97 ERA, so obviously they need to worry more about finding pitching wherever they can, rather than hanging onto another good, but not great, outfielder. Justin Marks, a starting pitcher in (single) A, was a third round draft pick in 2009, but has not looked that good yet. He was the throw in pickup, so if he does not ever get out of A ball, then it will not matter too much. Vin Mazzaro, a starting pitcher that has seen time in the majors both of the past two years, has not been great yet, but is projected as middle or late rotation starter. While neither player may ever turn out, they are both pitching prospects in their lower 20s, and are well worth the shot at better pitching they offer instead of the year more we would have been able to keep Dejesus, before having to give him up anyway.
While I think Dayton Moore probably made the right move for the team, I truly hate to see Dejesus go. He represents everything that is right about baseball and one of the last pieces of the 2003 team (if only 9 AB’s in 12 games) that made me love the Royals in the first place. I will miss his genuine smile. I will miss his post game ritual with Soria. I will miss his post-injury RBI tear he went on each year. I lament the fact that Dejejols will no longer make sense. David Dejesus, KC loves you and this one is to you
Dragon Ball Zeets