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Why the Royals Didn't Trade Jeff Francis

A month ago Connor touched on the possibility of the Royals trading Jeff Francis. Well, they didn't. Why not?

  • Obviously, a large factor here is the attitude of the General Manager. By all accounts, Dayton Moore was in no mood to make trades just to make them.
  • Oddly, there just wasn't a big market for starting pitchers.
  • Jeff's ERA has hovered around the mid 4.00s for the last month. While that seems decent, it's closer to below average these days. Even after Friday's shutout against Cleveland, Francis's ERA was just 4.38, an ERA+ of 88.
  • Francis just isn't striking anyone out, which likely gave a number of teams pause, either from a statistical or scouting perspective. His K/9 is just 4.6, which is in the danger zone in terms of sustainability. He's getting by with a no Ks no BBs approach, but only barely.
  • Francis isn't terribly expensive, but he isn't bottom-of-the-barrel cheap either. His base salary for the rest of the season is roughly $800,000, but you can assume another million or so in bonus money.
  • Yes, Francis is healthy, but he's got an injury history and lacks a reputation for being durable.
  • Finally, while Francis isn't very good, he's one of the team's better options in the rotation. The Royals seem to want to be not-horrible for the final three months of 2011, and Francis might help the team avoid freefalling into 100 loses.