Heading into the 2017 season, it seemed as if the Royals were going to take a step back on speed and a step forward on power. They made many moves to suggest this. Signing Brandon Moss, trading for Jorge Soler, and trading away Jarrod Dyson. While some of those moves have not panned it, the idea still has held true. Through 87 games last year, the Royals had 79 home runs and 50 stolen bases. Through the team's first 87 games this year, they present current marks of 107 home runs and 43 stolen bases.
As I said above, part of this had to do with trading speedster Jarrod Dyson. On the surface, the trade looked fine, as the Royals were getting a controllable pitcher in Nate Karns. Even with the recent injury news about Karns, the deal could still work in favor for the Royals.
So here we are in July now, and the Royals have two glaring holes on offense. Outfield and DH. One of the players that could fit the bill for the Royals is... Jarrod Dyson!
I haven't been the only one to kick around this idea too, as David Lesky of BP Kansas City also brought it up.
Here’s my favorite. He’s on his way to a career high in plate appearances and is hitting .258/.340/.391 with, yes, five home runs. The offense isn’t what you acquire him for, but he’s done a really nice job this season and is showing that his .340 OBP and .388 SLG last year is no fluke. He swings at strikes and he uses his speed quite well. Defensively, the Royals could put Dyson in right field, move Bonifacio to the DH spot and get back to having that amazing outfield defense. With just a few months left before reaching free agency, the cost to acquire Dyson likely wouldn’t be exorbitant. I think this is a move that could really help the team.
Dyson is currently on pace for the best offensive season of his career. He is actually hitting exactly at the league norm, as he currently has a 100 wRC+. He already has a career high for home runs with five. Like Lesky mentioned above, his decent season last year with bat might not be a mirage.
Dyson is up to his usual stuff outside of hitting. His 11 defensive runs saved rank fourth among outfielders in baseball. He is also tied for second in outfield assists among all major leaguers. All these nice attributes of his have led to him posting the 13th best WAR in the major leagues among outfielders, according to Fangraphs. Underrated.
The base running is still pretty good too. His 20 stolen bases rank fifth in baseball. According to BsR, he comes in as the seventh best base runner in the majors. Could be useful for a team like the Royals, who rank 19th in stolen bases and 24th in BsR.
If you acquire Dyson, he probably slides in as the starting right fielder for the club. This would give the Royals two of the top ten defensive outfielders in baseball (Alex Gordon) and three of the top fifteen (adding in Lorenzo Cain). Fan of defensive WAR? Well, the Royals would have three of the top ten defensive outfielders in that category.
I may be dreaming too far here, but Dyson would also fit nicely into a leadoff role for the Royals with his .340 OBP. Could do wonders for a lineup that has had serious problems with leadoff.
Dyson wouldn't cost a high amount too. A 32 year old outfielder on an expiring deal should be a piece the Royals can acquire. Something to worry about though is the Mariners not making hims available, while they are still in the thick of things in the AL Wild Card race. On the other hand though, Mariners GM Jerry DiPoto does have a knack for trading.
The day Jarrod Dyson was traded, I immediately though about him returning to Kansas City in the offseason. I now hold hope that he can help the Royals in another pennant race starting this July.
Would you want the Royals to trade for Jarrod Dyson this July?
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