Dear Dayton Moore, Please Call Up Kila Ka'aihue

Okay GMDM, you may have noticed we have a slight problem scoring runs this season. You may have noticed that this was true last year, as well. The player who was brought to help fix this problem, Jose Guillen, has fallen flat on his fanny. The rest of the babies haven't helped out that much, either; David DeJesus is having his typical solid year, and Alex Gordon was as much fun as hyperactive kittens on roller skates against righties this year, but the fact remains that this team is pretty bad at hitting a baseball. Mike Aviles, a guy who still loses playing time to Tony Pena Jr., handily leads the Royals in position player VORP at 27.1. That's good for a tie for 68th in MLB alongside Alfonso Soriano. Aviles was not even in the team's plans as a utility guy at the beginning of the year, and has only accounted for 6.2% of the Royals PAs this year. In other words, that's not good. I mean, it's great for Aviles, but it illustrates a pretty ugly picture.

So, this brings me to the recent comments you made on 610 radio, which sadly I didn't have the pleasure of listening to. It's all right - don't bother telling me your exact words, some of my friends have clued me in. Basically what you seem to be suggesting is that, with the team that hitting with all of the prowess of a blindfolded six-year-old hyped up on smarties going after a "my little pony" pinata, there's not much chance of one Kila Ka'aihue being called up in September. Something about a 40-man roster, yadda yadda yadda.

This is kind of distressing news to me, I must admit.

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 First of all, I am well aware of the possibility that Kila might just be a AAAA slugger, as 24 is pretty late as breakouts in AA go. I am aware that not many of the players with Ka'aihue's career path go on to become major league regulars. Okay? So understand that I'm rational about all this. The catch is, we are in the midst of yet another year where the Royals are entering September with nothing to play for but next year, so it seems rather counterintuitive to me that we wouldn't call up someone who could potentially fill a desperate need on this roster. And I'm all about going with the instincts, Dayton.

"Hawaiian Punch" as we blogging simpletons like to call him, hit .314/.463/.624 in AA this year. I won't waste time pointing out how good that line is, because your must have noticed. I'm assuming that because Ka'aihue's hitting earned him a promotion to the PCL in AAA ball. I wonder if you've noticed that he hasn't stopped hitting there. Yes, there might be some BABIP flukiness in his year, but Ka'aihue's 100-odd appearances in AAA have seen him hit .330/.455/.648. Yes, that's in the PCL, but we can take those numbers with a grain of salt and they're still pretty tasty. For the year, Hawaiian Punch has hit .317/.461/.630, with 100 walks and only 63 strikeouts. That's a 1.091 OPS. He could lose 300 OPS points in the transition to the majors, and he'd still be hitting better than Ross Gload. That's three hundred, as in a "3" followed by two "0s," Mr. Moore. That's the difference between Albert Pujols and our own David DeJesus. It's also an overrated movie based on an overrated graphic novel, too, but I digress. Back to my main point.

Ka'aihue has done nothing to but flat out rake in 2008, and if it costs us a 40-man roster spot to have him get a shot in September, then I promise you we've got some players lying around that really don't mean much. Off the top of my head, there's Tony Pena Jr., Joey Gathright, Ross Gload, Jeff Fulchino, Matt Tupman, and Shane Costa that all look like great candidates to be waived bye-bye. I'd include Kip Wells on this list, too, but you just claimed him so and I don't want to make you think that it's a better idea to get rid of Wells than it is to get rid of Ross Gload. I know I'm forgetting a bunch of players, too. Point is, clearing some of these bums off the 40-man roster would be addition by subtraction. If you were to give Ka'aihue a shot, it would be addition by subtraction AND Ka'aihue might keep hitting the ball, too.

Maybe I'm just an idiot who sits around and "disseminates his unqualified opinions to the masses," as my pal Stephen A. Smith has put it, but this just seems a common sense decision to me. Let me bullet point this for you:

  • We do not have a good offense.
  • We are a rebuilding team with nothing to lose at the moment.
  • Kila Ka'aihue stands a half-decent chance at improving offense if we bring him up in September. He also might prove to be a long-term answer.
  • Therefore, we should bring up Kila Ka'aihue.

As to the 40-man issue:

  • We need a spot on the 40-man roster to bring Hawaiian Punch up.
  • Tony Pena Jr. and other neverwillbes are on the 40-man roster
  • DFA Tony Pena Jr., and...
  • Surprise! Now we have space! We are not going to miss a glove man with a negative OBP. Shake a tree, and ten gloves fall out.

Now look, GMDM, I think you've done a pretty good job so far since you've taken over this team. I am willing to defend your work on more than one front, and I think you'll do a good job getting this team ready to make a run at contention. I tell you this because 1. it is true and 2. I'm about to make fun of you so I want you to know I'm doing so as a concerned friend.

See those bullet point arguments above, Dayton? Especially the first one? They seem a lot like this deeply-rooted-in-common sense argument which comes up quite a bit in "real life." Suppose there's someone you want to date (stay with me here, I know this may seem a little juvenile) and you know she's available. You could:

  • Ask her to go on a date (with you, of course, make sure she knows that).
  • Not ask her to go on a date.

And if you take the first course of action, there are really only two possible outcomes:

  • She will say "yes," and you will go out.
  • She will say "no," and you won't go out.
  • She will die in a tragic blimp accident.

Sorry, forgot about that last one. Anyways, if you choose the second option, there is only one outcome:

  • You won't go out.

Now, far be it for me to give relationship advice, being the only moddie around here who isn't married, but that's a pretty frigging simple equation. I understand why you don't want to tango with Ryan Shealy, Dayton - he disappointed you last year and you doubt he's changed much. I have to say, though, that Kila's available. He seems to be able to hit the ball. He has a nice smile. You might as well give the guy a shot. If he fails? What do we lose? More games? Ahahaha. Good one.

Come September, call up Kila Ka'aihue. I'm not sure if anyone in the minors this year has earned it more.

 

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