12/08/08 9:51 PM EST
KC examining deals with eye on present
GM Moore isn't ruling out adding an upper-tier free agent
By Dick Kaegel / MLB.com
Maybe you'd better tune that out.
Because the Royals obtained Coco Crisp to play center field, thereby moving DeJesus to left, Teahen seems to be the odd man out. Yet Moore sees Teahen as an intricate, if very moveable, part of the Royals.
"We feel that Mark is more important to our team today, because he gives us depth and a lot of versatility and we think our team's better. To have a good team, you've got to have balance and versatility, and Mark's got that," Moore said.
Teahen can play left, right, third or first. He's moved rather seamlessly from position to position in the past. He's got some power and runs the bases well. Both Moore and manager Trey Hillman obviously believe Teahen could be a mix-and-match player in the lineup.
DeJesus was an offensive leader last year, hitting well in the clutch, and Greinke readjusted masterfully in his return to a full-time starter.
"For us to move Zack or David, we'd have to get players back that would help us now as equally as they do -- and beyond," Moore said.
"We like both of those guys -- all three of them -- a lot."
So none is likely to go in a deal to address the remaining items on Moore's wish list: setup relievers, a starting pitcher and a middle infielder.
"We think we're in a better position to win now than we were last year, so to move those guys it would be very difficult for us," Moore said.
While acknowledging that the Royals don't have a lot of wiggle room on a likely $70 million budget, Moore hasn't completely ruled out a high-tier free-agent position player.
But to take on the salary, the Royals would have to move a high-paid player or two. Easier said than done.
"There are ways to potentially add a marquee free agent, but we would have to do something else," Moore said. [We'd have to] move a player or a couple of players to free up that money and maybe get creative on the back end of a contract or something."
To that end, Moore hasn't ruled out Rafael Furcal, the high-end shortstop who is still on the market.
"Yeah, we'll look at everything," Moore said. "That's what we have to do. That's the only reason we exist."
He did, however, rule out designated hitter Milton Bradley, the free agent from the Texas Rangers.
"I don't know where he'd fit," Moore said.
Dick Kaegel is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.