The 2012 season was supposed to serve as the final stepping stone for the Kansas City Royals before they finally turned the corner. However, injuries, a slightly ham-fisted manager and wildly inconsistent play have left many questioning how close this organization really is to contending.
The Royals’ minor league system has been highly praised for years, having consisted of some of the best young talent that Major League Baseball has to offer.
As players such as Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas and Danny Duffy gradually made their way to Kansas City, it would be a second wave of talent—including Wil Myers, Mike Montgomery and eventually John Lamb—that would cap off the youth movement in an effort to give a browbeaten fanbase something to start smiling about.
Fielding one of the youngest rosters in all of baseball, it appears that the Royals are in dire need of an injection of experience—along with a winning pedigree—to help lift the weight off of the shoulders of players who haven’t experienced failure before. But at what cost does it make it viable to do so?
Free-agent starting pitcher Roy Oswalt is the dangling carrot out there, enticing a number of organizations to bite on his services.
Oswalt certainly is at the point in his career where winning a championship is at the forefront of his mind. But how invaluable would a guy like that be to a team full of young players that are believed to be on the cusp of greatness?
At 34, Oswalt still has a few years of baseball left in him. If the Royals were to make such a move, they would have to throw the kitchen sink at him for him to not take offers from organizations that are in the position of winning right now.
It is obvious that the deck is stacked against a team like the Royals from being players in the Oswalt sweepstakes. However, it would be foolish for them not to at least put their best foot forward in making an attempt.