5) New York Mets trade deadline candidate, infielder Hunter Dozier
Let’s face it: The Kansas City Royals remain on a path to nowhere. The Royals finished in last place in what was the weakest division in baseball last year, and have few interesting prospects in the minor leagues. They just hired a new general manager, J.J. Picollo and a new manager in Matt Quatraro, so there is not much experience there or familiarity with the Royals organization there.
Now, Quatraro is a strong hire with player relations and track records of working with playoff teams with Cleveland and Tampa Bay, but how much in terms of resources will the team invest to support the new brass. So this probably means the Royals may have to move guys to make the farm system above average again.
Hunter Dozier is a versatile trade candidate in 2023 because he has a team-friendly contract and can thrive offensively away from spacious Kaufman Stadium in Kansas City and could thrive in a better lineup with the Mets. He has two years and $16.75 million left on his contract, which feels soft when it comes to Steve Cohen. Now, he won’t have an everyday role if he is traded to the Mets, but he could be a depth piece as a corner outfielder or corner infielder.
But if Kansas City remains at, or near, the basement of the AL Central, as expected, expect the Royals to sell at the trade deadline, again, and the Mets can take advantage of it.