Royals willing to trade David DeJesus, hoping to trade lesser veterans

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He’s not willing to recall Alex Gordon from the minors despite the former No. 2 overall pick’s great numbers at Triple-A, but Royals general manager Dayton Moore told Bob Dutton of the Kansas City Star that he’ll be looking to trade veterans between now and the July 31 deadline.
David DeJesus figures to be the most attractive target for many teams, as the 30-year-old can play anywhere in the outfield and is currently sporting career-highs in batting average (.314), on-base percentage (.392), and slugging percentage (.479). He’s also signed for reasonable money through next season, making $4.7 million this year with a $6 million option or $500,000 buyout for 2011.
Moore said that he expects “a busy trade market” because the Royals have “some nice pieces” to deal and “will evaluate what comes our way if anything does come our way.” However, my guess is that Moore is dramatically overestimating the market for guys like Jose Guillen, Rick Ankiel, Scott Podsednik, Willie Bloomquist, Kyle Farnsworth, and basically anyone not named DeJesus.
Kansas City might be able to unload a couple of those mediocre veterans, but they certainly won’t be getting anything resembling promising prospects in return for them and in the meantime the Royals are wasting at-bats on 30-somethings while 20-somethings like Gordon and Kila Ka’aihue crush Triple-A pitching. In the past three offseasons Moore has spent $80 million on Guillen, Ankiel, Podsednik, Farnsworth, Bloomquist, Jason Kendall, Ron Mahay, Brett Tomko, Juan Cruz, Horacio Ramirez, and John Bale. Seriously.

Johnny Cueto expected to opt-out of his deal after the season

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Johnny Cueto signed a six-year $130 million deal with the Giants prior to the 2016 season. In his first season he went 18-5 with a 2.79 ERA and 198 strikeouts in 219.2 innings, helping lead the Giants to the playoffs. This season has been rocky for Cueto — he’s got a a 4.42 ERA in 15 starts and has battled blisters — but they’ve been far rockier for the Giants overall, as they sit in last place in the NL West and have the second worst record in baseball.

Many suspect that the Giants will either rebuild or, at the very least, restructure some in response to this nightmare year. If so, they’re likely going to be doing it with Cueto, who Jon Heyman reports is going to opt-out of his deal:

San Francisco Giants starting pitcher Johnny Cueto is planning to opt out of his contract at the end of the year, but he would listen to any extension offer . . . Cueto has $84 million to go over four years. It would probably take an injury or major slump for Cueto not to opt out. But it makes sense that he will.

Heyman says the Giants are not inclined to give him an extension, so expect to see Cueto on the free agent market three days after the World Series ends, which is the deadline for him to exercise his opt-out rights.

The Dodgers are concerned about Julio Urias’ shoulder

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Things are going great for the Dodgers lately. They’ve won seven consecutive games and 13 of their last 14. They lead the National League in wins and are in first place in, arguably, the best division in baseball.

But there are a lot of moving parts on a baseball team, and even when some things are going great, other things can go not-so-great. Like this:

Urias has been diagnosed with shoulder inflammation and shut down indefinitely. An MRI last week showed no structural damage, but his shoulder is still bothering him. He has not pitched in the bigs since late May, when he allowed seven runs in less than three innings against the Miami Marlins. He was sent down after that and went 3-0 with a 3.12 ERA, six walks and 17 strikeouts in 17.1 innings pitched in three starts with Oklahoma City before being shelved.