It seems reasonable clear that the Royals are going to need some new pitching blood. And though I am sure the Royals would be happy to sign a truly major free agent, I'm guessing that is unlikely to happen (Though not impossible). Assuming the Royals were unable/unwilling to pay for a free agent like Mark Burhle, Edwin Jackson, or CJ Wilson, the Royals can either wait for the prospects to mature or trade. Assuming you were going to make a trade or two, what would you put on the table?
In full disclosure, I'm not Royals fan. I like the Royals, and I was a fan as a kid. But I quit following baseball all together, and only picked it back up in the last couple years. My home is in Washington now, so I came back a Nationals fan (they can use all the help). If you are the kind of fan that can understand having an AL team and an NL team, then the Royals are my AL team. If you aren't, then I'm just a Nats fan. I explain all of this because I think that the teams ought to be talking. The Nationals have strong pitching depth. They could use another dominant starter, but what team couldn't? What the Nationals don't have is much of an offense. They ranked 24th in Runs and 25th in OBP. Could a workable trade be had?