The Royals had a good day last week. Though Raul Ibanez slipped away to Seattle, the R's managed to sign Joe Randa (3B), Brian Anderson (SP), and Curtis Leskanic (RP).
I like Joe Randa, but was rather indifferent about resigning him. He had a great year in 2003, but at his age, the decline could come quickly. He is a Kansas City guy (lives here year 'round), so the hometown guy is always well liked. Since the R's had nobody to take over at third, it is a good signing.
Leskanic is a great signing. The R's traded for him mid-season and he was a solidifying factor in the bullpen. A great set up man who could close if needed.
The big one here is Anderson. He's a guy who should have been a much-coveted free agent. A left hander who has learned to pitch with finesse and eats up innings. He could be a 2 or 3 starter on just about any team. For the R's he'll probably be the 2 guy with May getting the number 1 spot coming out of Spring Training.
There are rumors that the R's are looking at signing Benito Santiago, Matt Stairs and Raul Mondesi. They definitely need a catcher - I'll be glad to see the human automatic out (Mayne) gone. Benito is older than dirt, but he's durable, and can hit some. Joe Posnanski of the Kansas City Star says:
"They would like very much to sign Benito Santiago, which would be great because it would mean the Royals would have two of the three National League All-Star catchers from 1989. OK, one of them is Tony Pena. No matter. Santiago even at age 87 is the best catcher available at the Royals' price."
Stairs would be a good signing. He can play left, and 1B. After losing Ibanez, and with Sweeney's health issuse, Stairs could be a great addition.
I'm not too keen on Mondesi. I'm not real familiar with him, but I have the impression that he wouldn't be a good club-house guy. Plus, he's never realized his potential. Great talent, but has never put up the numbers.