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Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Royals acquire Melky Cabrera from White Sox

Cabrera is hitting .295 this season and will look to help the Royals’ playoff push.

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Melky Cabrera hits in a game against the Chicago Cubs earlier this month.

Charles Rex Arbogast / AP

July 31, 2017

The Kansas City Royals have traded for Chicago White Sox outfielder Melky Cabrera in exchange for two pitching prospects.

The Royals added Cabrera with the hope that he will help lead them on a strong playoff run. He’s having a resurgent year, hitting .295 with 13 home runs and 56 RBIs.

Kansas City sent pitching prospects A.J. Puckett and Andre Davis to the Chicago White Sox in order to acquire Cabrera. Puckett has posted a 9-7 record with a 3.90 ERA and 98 strikeouts in just over 108 innings pitched this year for high-A Wilmington. Davis has a 5-4 record with a 4.83 ERA and 87 strikeouts in almost 86 innings pitched this year for single-A Lexington. Neither were projected to be considerable parts of the Royals’ future, as their numbers in Minor League ball have been underwhelming.

Trading Puckett and Davis for a rental in Cabrera seems to be a good deal for the Royals, as they will surely improve production from the outfield and designated hitter positions.

It doesn’t seem likely that Cabrera will find a spot starting in the outfield, however. Lorenzo Cain and Alex Gordon are All-Star, Gold Glove-winning outfielders (despite Gordon’s off year), and Jorge Bonifacio has proven he was worth the hype, seeming like one of the better rookies in the American League this year given his limited playing time at the beginning of the season (.263, 14 home runs, 33 RBIs). That being said, it seems most likely that Cabrera will slide into the designated hitter role for the remainder of 2017. He will replace Brandon Moss (.210, 12 home runs, 25 RBIs) and will act as a formidable bat in the bottom half of the order.

In 2012, Cabrera was named the All-Star game MVP as a member of the San Francisco Giants. He went 2-for-3 with a home run, two runs batted in and two runs scored in the game. Coincidentally, the game was played at Kauffman Stadium, and the Giants acquired Cabrera from the Royals in a trade prior to the 2012 season.

Cabrera will suit up for the Royals for the first time Monday night against the Orioles. Edited by Joe Noser | jnoser@themaneater.com

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