Athletics Rangers Baseball
AP Images

Report: Indians, Phillies interested in Joey Gallo

3 Comments

Evan Grant of the Dallas Morning News reports that multiple teams are in on Rangers infielder/outfielder Joey Gallo, including the Indians and Phillies. While the aforementioned teams are considered the frontrunners in any potential deal for the slugger, it doesn’t look like any concrete offers are currently on the table — and it’s not certain that a trade will be made by Tuesday’s deadline, either.

It’s easy to see why the 24-year-old is attracting such a high level of interest: Despite a batting average of just .190, he’s racked up 25 home runs, a .764 OPS and 1.3 fWAR through his first 392 plate appearances of the season. Those numbers look all the more appealing given that he’s slated to become arbitration-eligible in 2020 and won’t enter free agency until 2023.

While the Phillies don’t appear to have a pressing need for more outfielders or corner infielders at the moment, the Indians could stand to benefit from any healthy, productive outfielder that comes their way. According to FanGraphs, they have the fourth-worst outfield production in the American League, the likely result of patching together a starting trio from Michael Brantley, Rajai Davis and Melky Cabrera while Lonnie Chisenhall, Tyler Naquin, and Bradley Zimmer deal with various injuries.

The Royals are paying everyone. Why can’t all of the other teams?

Getty Images
7 Comments

Over the past several weeks we’ve heard a lot of news about teams furloughing front office and scouting staff, leveling pay cuts for those who remain and, most recently, ceasing stipends to minor league players and releasing them en masse. The message being sent, intentionally or otherwise, is that baseball teams are feeling the pinch.

The Kansas City Royals, however, are a different story.

Jon Heyman reported this afternoon that the Royals are paying their minor leaguers through August 31, which is when the minor league season would’ve ended, and unlike so many other teams, they are not releasing players either. Jeff Passan, meanwhile, reports that the Royals will not lay any team employees off or furlough anyone. “Nearly 150 employees will not take pay cuts,” he says, though “higher-level employees will take tiered cuts.” Passan adds that the organization intends to restore the lost pay due to those higher-level employees in the future when revenue ramps back up, making them whole.

While baseball finances are murky at best and opaque in most instances, most people agree that the Royals are one of the lower-revenue franchises in the game. They are also near the bottom as far as franchise value goes. Finally, they have the newest ownership group in all of baseball, which means that the group almost certainly has a lot of debt and very little if any equity in the franchise. Any way you slice it, cashflow is likely tighter in Kansas City than almost anywhere else.

Yet the Royals are paying minor leaguers and front office employees while a great number of other teams are not. What’s their excuse?