The Royals have “inquired” about free agent first baseman Matt Adams, according to ESPN.com reporter Jerry Crasnick. Adams is coming off one of his better seasons, hitting .274/.319/.522 in 367 plate appearances between the Cardinals and Braves, but was non-tendered by Atlanta a few weeks ago.
The #Indians and #Royals have both inquired on 1B Matt Adams. In Cleveland's case, he could be a fallback if Tribe can't bring back Carlos Santana. #Nationals have also inquired on Adams, but as more of a bench bat. Adam Lind, who hit .303 with 14 HRs this year, is a free agent.— Jerry Crasnick (@jcrasnick) December 11, 2017
The Royals had shown interest in the 29-year old left-handed hitter before. In six Major League seasons, Adams has hit .271/.315/.469. However he should really be used in a platoon situation - he has hit just .206/.236/.357 against lefties in his career.
Adams might be a decent low-cost option and Plan B (or Plan C) if the team cannot land Eric Hosmer. But if the team can’t re-sign Hosmer, shouldn’t they be rebuilding? And if the team is rebuilding, why waste time on a limited-upside 29- year old who can’t hit lefties?
Maybe the Royals see Ryan O’Hearn as not being ready (or not in the picture at all since he was left unprotected from the Rule 5 draft) and maybe see Hunter Dozier or Cheslor Cuthbert being an effective right-handed platoon partner for a player like Adams. Maybe they think Adams can provide cheap production for one or two years, to be flipped at the deadline, although Adams was traded last year for Juan Yepez, who isn’t even a Top 30 prospect for the Cardinals.
Maybe the Royals are just doing their due diligence on kicking the tires on all options. But Adams is the kind of player the 2006 Royals brought in. He’s not good enough to help you win many games, and not young enough to have much upside. The Royals are going to have to be creative this winter and figure out which direction they want to go, but any direction should probably not have Matt Adams in the picture.