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dejesus-an-option-for-schuerholz | September | 2007 Articles

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DeJesus an Option for Schuerholz?

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Tim Dierkes of MLB Trade Rumors speculated in a recent post that the Royals could look to flip center fielder David DeJesus this off-season in a recent post. In the article, Dierkes speculates that Royals GM Dayton Moore could look for either young pitching or a corner-player with power in exchange for DeJesus, and mentions Scott Thorman and Kala Ka'aihue as possible targets from the Braves. Who will be manning center field for the Braves is one of the biggest question marks for this team heading into '08. The Andruw Jones era will almost certainly come to an end after a disappointing season for the gold-glove center fielder, and Jordan Schafer, considered by most to be Atlanta's future in center is at least a year away from the majors. The free-agent options are either too expensive or very unappealing and internally, the best option hasn't played out in center field since College. I think John Schuerholz's personnel moves regarding the hole in center are going to be affected by Brandon Jones' performance the rest of this season in into the Arizona Fall League. A strong showing could mean that he starts next year with the right field job, moving Jeff Francoeur over to center. On the trade front, DeJesus is a very interesting idea. DeJesus, 27, has a contract that runs until 2010 with $10.8 million due over the '08-'10 seasons along with a $6 milion option for the 2011 season. The 27-year old started gaining notoriety with two pretty good seasons in '05 and '06 but has taken a turn for the worse at the plate this year. Starting everyday in center for the first time, DeJesus' average has dropped by almost 30 points and his slugging has dropped around 60 points. Kauffman Field in Kansas City is a hitter's death trap, so moving out of there and into the NL would probably do him some good at the plate. He is never going to be more than a 10-home run guy but DeJesus usually hits for good average and gets on base at a nice clip. Add it on to some pretty good defense in center and he is a pretty decent option in center. If Schuerholz could ship off Scott Thorman for DeJesus, I would do it in a heartbeat, but I don't think Dayton Moore would go for that. I could see either Thorman or Ka'aihue as part of a package though, if the team included someone like Jose Ascanio or Royce Ring in the deal to shore up the Kansas City bullpen. The Royals obviously have quite a bit of needs, so to see a deal get done that is completely different than this would not surprise me at all. Right now, I'd call this a possibility and not a probability for the Royals. I'm just not convinced they'll move DeJesus.
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