But fear not, this team CAN contend in 2010. It is quite simple. The skeleton of a division contender is presently wearing Royal Blue. Dayton Moore must find the pieces to fill in around the foundation of this team and put them in a position to win a very winnable AL Central in 2010.
Here are the pieces that are for sure going to be the "meat and potatoes" of the Royals next year:
Zack Greinke- Ace is a position that most teams do not have, but most division winners have them.
Gil Meche- Grizzled vets are a dime a dozen, but hopefully a healthy Gil Meche can finally receive some much needed run support in 2010 and significantly have more wins than losses next year. Gil is a very solid No. 2 WHEN HEALTHY.
Brian Bannister- If Banny has finally figured it out, then the Royals have absolutely the scariest 1-2-3 top of the rotation in the AL Central.
Luke Hochevar- If Luke becomes the second coming of Derek Lowe, then the Royals have the scariest rotation in all of baseball.
Billy Butler- Billy is going to hit 30 home runs next year. Looking for a hitting equivalent of Zack Greinke? All of the signs are pointing to a break out year for Billy next year. Oh yeah, I would a little bit of money on Billy hitting close to .350 next year, but I would put money on it...
Yuniesky Betancourt- I wasn't impressed with the trade, but Dayton Moore may have fooled us all with this one. In a small sample size with the team, Yuni has proven to be an above average shortstop. Not to mention he's hitting .313/.353/.563 in August. 1 error in 23 games makes us all take another look at this trade too.
Keep the faith. You don't have to watch this crap, but I'm telling you, things could be different in 2010. Or Trey Hillman could still be the manager and we're right back here again in a year.