The Kansas City Royals are contenders in 2014. It wasn’t clear that would be the case as recently as earlier this month, and of course it is still pending a continuation of their winning ways. But the way things look now, the Royals are actually going to have the chance to be the playoff team many have predicted them to be the last two seasons.
With that being the case, they will have the opportunity to be buyers as the July 31st trade deadline approaches. While Dayton Moore and the Royals’ front office might not necessarily want to make a blockbuster deal, they could still have a trade in the works. Specifically, they could use help in right field to bolster their everyday lineup in the spot occupied by the struggling and injured Nori Aoki.
McCullough also notes that the Royals could target a minor deal for help off the bench.
At first glance it seems that Smith would be an especially intriguing target. An everyday player Smith is not, as he struggles mightily against left-handed pitching. But his ability to mash right-handed pitching has him among the leaders in many offensive categories this season. That skill would make him an asset for a playoff run, especially because the Royals could carve out extra at-bats for him as the designated hitter.
The Royals made aggressive moves to build their current roster, so it will be interesting to see how their front office approaches things in the next month or so.