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Beltran A Fit For Royals?; Offseason Pitching Targets

  • Carlos Beltran wants to keep playing beyond this season and there’s a chance he could return to the Royals in 2017.  Kansas City will have a vacancy at DH next season since Kendrys Morales is a free agent, and the Royals made a push to sign Beltran in the 2013-14 offseason before the Yankees boosted their offer to include a third guaranteed year.  Beltran, who turns 39 tomorrow, is still swinging a strong bat, and it’s possible he could better preserve himself in a regular DH role — Alex Rodriguez’s presence in New York has kept Beltran mostly in right field as a Yankee.

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  • Aside from Ian Kennedy, the Royals also targeted free agent hurlers Zack Greinke, Wei-Yin Chen and Mike Leake as good fits for their rotation last winter.  “All throw changeups, all field their positions well and, most importantly, all command their fastballs,” Rosenthal noted, and GM Dayton Moore told him that pitchers who tend to fall behind in the count didn’t mesh with the Royals’ style.  K.C. ended up signing Kennedy to a five-year, $70MM contract, which was less than the five years/$80MM Leake and Chen respectively received from the Cardinals and Marlins and obviously well below Greinke’s $206.5MM megadeal with the Diamondbacks.  (Leake, unlike the other three, didn’t have qualifying offer draft compensation to his services.)  In the early going, Kennedy has been outstanding as a Royal, posting a 1.35 ERA over his first three starts.