While Josh Hamilton and Zack Greinke—the two biggest names on this year's free-agent market—have yet to sign new contracts, the MLB winter meetings are off to a quick start with some popular players already calling new places their home.
Some of the moves are head-scratchers, like outfielder Shane Victorino snagging a hefty three-year, $39-million deal from the Boston Red Sox. And some make perfect sense, like starting pitcher Dan Haren inking a simple one-year deal with the Washington Nationals that will pay him $13 million in 2013.
However, this time of year thrives on rumors; the latest buzz floating around about where the marquee players may sign or any of several potential blockbuster trades that could take place prior to spring training.
As each team jockeys for position heading into 2013, some often come out of nowhere to make the biggest splashes.
Look no further than the Kansas City Royals, as top prospect Wil Myers' name has come up a lot recently.
The Royals have already made two significant moves this offseason, signing Jeremy Guthrie and trading for Ervin Santana—both of which have this franchise seemingly headed in the right direction.
Kansas City has made it apparent that starting pitching is their focal point, but to net a big arm may cost them one of the brightest young stars in all of baseball.
"Winning" and "Royals" are terms not often mentioned together, so talk about improving the product is off-putting at times to those not involved in the day-to-day operations of running a baseball organization.
However, fans have earned the right to express their opinions—especially those in a city as success-divested as Kansas City.
Here is how some took to the news on Twitter.
I'm not saying don't go after pitching. I'm saying go after pitching, but do it in a way that doesn't hamstring your budget and future.— Brian McGannon (@BrianMcGannon) December 6, 2012
Myers is under team control for at least six years, while Shields will make $10.25 million in 2013 and has a $12 million team option for 2014.
I'm not saying you can't trade Myers. I'm saying trading Myers for Shields when similar pitchers are available for similar $$$ seems silly.— David Lesky (@DBLesky) December 6, 2012
On the positive side, at least Shields is a legitimately good big league pitcher. But still, two years of him is not worth 6+ of Myers.— David Lesky (@DBLesky) December 6, 2012
Shields will certainly come in as the Royals' ace, but the cost has to be right for the short-sighted approach.
always, always remember....if this organization had developed pitchers we would not be having this discussion now would we— greg schaum (@Greg_Schaum) December 6, 2012
The Royals have been hamstrung recently with their own pitching prospects, either hitting a wall in their development (Mike Montgomery) or being decimated by injuries (Danny Duffy and John Lamb)—all of which were highly-touted arms at one point.
Any scenario that involves guaranteed playing time for Francoeur is bad for this team, even if better starting pitching arrives. #Royals— Ross Martin (@PCBearcat) December 6, 2012
Trading Myers keeps Jeff Francoeur in right field for presumably the entire 2013 season, something Royals fans might not be able to stomach no matter what pitcher is involved.
Though just a small sample size, you get the idea of how a Myers trade would be welcomed in Kansas City. If you want more proof, just do a quick search for his name on Twitter.
Follow Jeremy on Twitter @KCPopFlyBoy.
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