Heyman: Royals have checked in on R.A. Dickey

The Kansas City Royals have a bevy of talented young players and are apparently in the market for a front-end starter.  K.C. has already signed Ervin Santana and brought back Jeremy Guthrie but are looking for someone to slot into that number one slot in the rotation.  Their search for an ace, according to Jon Heyman of CBS, has apparently led them to call on the Tampa Bay Rays, Boston Red Sox, and the New York Mets.

Photo by Michael G. Baron

The Royals, who are searching for a top-of-the-rotation starter and have checked in on Jon Lester and James Shields, talked to the Mets about R.A. Dickey as well.

While several young Royals players would work for the Mets, Kansas City has no interest in trading young catcher Salvador Perez and isn’t looking to trade top outfield prospect Wil Myers. The Royals would prefer to send the Mets a package of younger prospects in any Dickey deal.

Dickey probably isn’t the perfect fit for Kansas City. He is 38 and currently under contract for only one more year. The Mets have been talking about a contract extension for Dickey for two months, but have also considered trades for Dickey in parallel talks.

The Mets’ goal is to keep Dickey on a two-year extension, but if they did trade him would most prefer a catcher and outfield help.  (As Mets GM Sandy Alderson said a few weeks ago regarding their roster, “What outfield?”)”

I was excited when I first saw that the Royals were interested in Dickey, not because I want to see R.A. go, but the idea of losing him would be somewhat eased if it brought back a young player the likes of Myers or Perez.  My hope is that if the Mets do feel as though trading Dickey is the best way to fill the glaring holes they have at catcher and/or in the outfield, they’ll hold true to their demands for a top flight prospect like Salvador Perez or Wil Myers, both of whom are major league ready.  The 22-year-old Perez batted .301 and hit 11 HR in just 289 at-bats for the Royals last year while Myers (21-years-old) batted .314 with 37 home runs and 109 RBI in 134 games between Double-A and Triple-A in 2012.

A deal like this wouldn’t be about ownership not wanting to pay Dickey what he has earned, it would be a baseball move and might prove to be a smart one at that.  The Mets likely consider their pitching as the strength of their farm system while they lack any players that can seemingly make an immediate impact in the outfield or behind the plate.  Those elements make a conversation with the Royals regarding Dickey interesting.

However, if the big name prospects are off limits then I really believe New York will make a strong push to bring Dickey back, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see Sandy Alderson and Dayton Moore spend some time together at the Winter Meetings.  As Heyman points out, Kansas City has the talent to interest just about any team looking to make a deal.

The Royals have a terrific stash of prospects to dangle, and apparently would consider dealing even Myers in the right deal, but aren’t looking to trade from their young nucleus that includes Perez, third baseman Mike Moustakas and first baseman Eric Hosmer.

They see Alex Gordon and Billy Butler as close to untouchable as they don’t want to break up a strong homegrown positional group. They’ve also gotten a lot of calls of inquiry about shortstop Alcides Escobar, but they aren’t inclined to trade him, either.”

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