The Royals have acquired Trevor Cahill in a six-player deal that includes relievers Brandon Maurer and Ryan Buchter coming to Kansas City in exchange for left-handed pitchers Matt Strahm and Travis Wood, and young outfield prospect Esteury Ruiz.
Pitching coach Dave Eiland likes how he fits in.
“He’s got a really heavy sinker, a slurvy hard curveball and a real good change-up,” Eiland said. “So it should play really well for us. It’s a guy that’s had a lot of success. He should fit nicely in that spot.”
Jason Hammel - who was teammates with Cahill with the Cubs, likes the move.
"We're trying to do something special here," Hammel said. "The front office is doing whatever it can that they think will help ... it's a commitment to winning.
Trevor Cahill is just thankful to be in the post-season hunt.
“I just look at it as an opportunity to help another team that’s in a playoff hunt,” Cahill told reporters. “I’ve been there the last two years and it was exciting. I’m really excited to get back. It’s going to be weird pitching in the American League again. It’ll be exciting. They’re a good team and they’ve won it before. It seems that they’ve got their same core group of guys. I’m sure they’re a tight-knit group over there.”
And it helps to go to a new city with some friends.
"It definitely helps out a lot, just as far as moving families," Cahill said. "If we're at a hotel, we can Uber together and stuff. We can sit on the same flight."
Pete Grathoff has seven things you should know about the new Royals pitchers.
Jeff Sullivan at Fangraphs thinks the Royals have acquired one of the more interesting pitchers around.
I can’t tell you exactly how much to believe in Cahill. I can’t tell you about his durability, nor can I tell you about the health of his shoulder. Maybe he’s going to wear down and have a miserable couple of months. But, statistically, there are so many positive indicators. You could say that this is kind of a progressive move, in that sense. It could be seen as a statistical roll of the dice. Every trade is a roll of the dice, but the Royals were able to get an interesting starter without paying out the nose. They’re accepting a certain kind of risk, but there’s no avoiding risk entirely.
Jeremy Klein at Beyond the Box Score thinks Cahill makes a lot of sense for “fringe contenders”.
Fringe contenders are in a tough spot. These are the teams that could benefit most from a two- or three-win upgrade, but they’re also the teams that should be most wary of trading future talent for present wins, lest they fall out of the playoff race altogether. It’s a delicate balance to strike: how to make an impactful upgrade, without selling off the future to chase unrealistic hope here and now?
Thankfully, San Diego Padres starter Trevor Cahill is here to solve the fringe contender conundrum. Cahill is having the season of his life, his underlying metrics match his surface stats, and he won’t cost an arm and a leg in terms of salary or prospects. In fact, if you ignore the that he missed six weeks this season with a shoulder injury and is, you know, Trevor Cahill, you could easily come to the conclusion that it’s Cahill, not Sonny Gray or Yu Darvishor Jeff Samardzija, who represents the best combination of ability, availability, and affordability on the trade market.
Eric Longenhagen at Fangraphs looks at the players the Royals traded away.
Already hearing a lot of buzz on Esteury Ruiz from evaluators who have seen him in Arizona. Really young but wiry strong. Good upside play.— Jeff Passan (@JeffPassan) July 24, 2017
Hunter Samuels at Baseball Prospectus Kansas City thinks Brandon Maurer can improve.
However, like so many pitchers before him, Maurer hasn’t really had the results to match the stuff. Since coming over to San Diego before the 2015 season, Maurer has a 4.33 ERA, despite maintaining very good strikeout, walk, and hits allowed numbers. His WHIP of 1.181 in that time definitely appears to be too low to go along with the higher ERA, but with 160 innings of work, this can’t really be ignored. Ultimately, it comes down to his performance with men on base.
Bradford Doolittle at ESPN writes that Dayton Moore was in a bind.
It is widely assumed that Kansas City's free agents are as good as gone, an assumption Moore has been quick to deny. He said the Royals will compete for their guys, and virtually no one believes him, because that's just our sense of how baseball economics are. At the same time, there has been no indication that Moore is ignoring the kind of prospect haul that would re-energize the farm system. The Royals' free agents might simply be more valuable to them than anybody else.
Jack Magruder at FanRag says the Royals had to go for it.
There will be no white flag trade here.
The window on the Hosmer-Moustakas-Cain veteran group will not close with a whimper… or a sell-off. If you have a chance to win, you chance it. The rolling Royals are betting on themselves. Compete now. Later comes later.
If Moore had been tempted to blow up his roster, it's because this is the last season he'll have this group of players together.
Hosmer, Cain and Moustakas are among six Royals eligible for free agency after the season. But there's not a sense of this being a final rodeo. During Spring Training, I said something to outfielder Alex Gordon about what a ride this group of Royals had "had."
"We're not done," he said.
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