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.

Reid Brignac is trying to become a switch hitter

LAKE BUENA VISTA, FL - FEBRUARY 26:  Reid Brignac #4 of the Atlanta Braves poses on photo day at Champion Stadium on February 26, 2016 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images)
Rob Carr/Getty Images
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Veteran utilityman Reid Brignac is in camp with the Astros on a minor league deal. The 31-year-old is close to being done as a major leaguer as he owns a career .219/.264/.309 triple-slash line across parts of nine seasons. In an effort to prolong his big league career, Brignac is now attempting to become a switch-hitter, MLB.com’s Brian McTaggart reports.

I’m going to try it out this year. It was something that I just thought long and hard about and I was like, ‘OK, I’m going to try and see how it goes.’ I used to switch-hit when I was younger off and on, nothing consistent. I could always handle the bat right-handed. I play golf right-handed, so I do a lot of things that way that feel natural.

I just want to get to the point where I’m trying to stay in games, not get pinch-hit for, not starting games because a lefty is starting. … That could help me stay in the games longer. I’m trying to add a new element. I play multiple positions and now if I can switch hit and be consistent at it, then that can only help me.

As Brignac mentions, he’s also verstile. He’s a shortstop by trade, but has also logged plenty of innings at second base and third base, and has occasionally played corner outfield.

There aren’t any examples — at least that I can think of — where players began switch-hitting late in their careers and actually succeeding in the major leagues. As the saying goes, you can’t teach an old dog new tricks. But here’s hoping Brignac bucks the trend.

Video: Andrelton Simmons makes a heads-up play to catch Carlos Asuaje off first base

ANAHEIM, CA - AUGUST 03:  Andrelton Simmons #2 of the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim returns to the dugout after scoring in the second inning against the Oakland Athletics at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on August 3, 2016 in Anaheim, California.  (Photo by Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images)
Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images
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Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons fell off the map a bit last year due to a combination of the Angels’ mediocrity, Simmons’ lack of offense, and a month-plus of missed action due to a torn ligament in his left thumb.

Simmons is still as good and as smart as ever on defense. That was on full display Monday when the Angels hosted the Padres for an afternoon spring exhibition.

With a runner on first base and nobody out in the top of the second inning, Carlos Asuaje grounded a 2-0 J.C. Ramirez fastball to right field. The runner, Hunter Renfroe, advanced to third base. Meanwhile, Asuaje wandered a little too far off the first base bag. Simmons cut off the throw to first base, spun around and fired to Luis Valbuena at first base. Valbuena swiped the tag on Asuaje for the first out of the inning.