[Updated 11:52 PM]
Here we are in the throes of the fake madness. I've been balancing work and trade offers and free agent proposals all day.
The Shadow Royals are operating with a $101MM budget this season, a 10% increase from last season's Opening Day payroll, which is probably more reflective of what the Royals payroll will be than anything that will come out of Dayton Moore's mouth until big signings are magnanimously made.
To recap the action from the first day, the Shadow Royals traded Jason Vargas, Christian Binford, and fellow pitching prospect Cody Reed to the Chicago Cubs for Edwin Jackson [not Edwin Jackon, whose character would clearly have dragged the team down], Luis Valbuena, and $6MM to be parsed out as $4MM in 2015 and $2MM in 2016. They also traded Greg Holland to the Red Sox for Allen Craig, pitching prospect Brian Johnson, and $5MM to be allocated as $1.5MM in 2016 and $3.5MM in 2017. The Royals bought out Billy Butler's 2015 option for $1MM. The Shadow Royals exercised their club option on Wade Davis. They extended a qualifying offer to James Shields. And finally, they non-tendered Jayson Nix.
On to today's action:
Free Agent Signing #1
The Royals agree to terms with Luke Hochevar. The deal is three years with a club option for a fourth. The money is as follows: $2.5MM in 2015, $3.5MM in 2016, $4MM in 2017, and a $4.5MM club option for 2018 with a $2.0MM buyout. There was apparently a three-year, $12MM offer on the table that basically necessitated the club option in 2018.
The Shadow Royals trade Tim Collins to the Brewers for pitching prospect Ariel Pena.
The Royals and Nationals agree to a rather large deal. The Nationals receive four prospects: starting pitcher Kyle Zimmer, third baseman Hunter Dozier, middle infielder Ramon Torres, and first baseman Ryan O'Hearn. The Royals receive Jordan Zimmermann and outfield prospect Brian Goodwin.
Orders of business
Shadow Royals non-tender Aaron Crow. The extend arbitration offers to Eric Hosmer, Lorenzo Cain, Danny Duffy, Jarrod Dyson, Kelvin Herrera, Louis Coleman, Mike Moustakas, and Luis Valbuena.
Free Agent Signing #2
The Royals sign Luis Mendoza to a split minor-league deal that becomes $700K if added to the Major League roster. #RememberTheMane!
Order of business
For the third straight year, the Shadow Royals promote Ned Yost to the role of Special Advisor to the General Manager--specifically in charge of providing wild game in the club house--and have named Brian Bannister manager.
Free Agent Signing #3
The Shadow Royals sign Jonny Gomes to a one-year deal worth $2.5MM.
Free Agent Signing #4
The Royals sign James McDonald to a minor-league deal.
The Royals agree to a deal with the Blue Jays. The Royals send Jeremy Guthrie, Omar Infante, and $2.2MM in 2016 to Toronto. The Jays send R.A. Dickey and Josh Thole to Kansas City.
The Shadow Royals payroll currently sits at $96.55MM of the $101MM budgeted.