With the four highest-paid players on the Royals roster on the disabled list, it has been another summer to forget in Kansas City.
How much better would the Royals be if those four were healthy? Probably not much, but who’s to say?
Here are capsules on the highest-paid K.C. players in the order of their annual recompense:
Jose Guillen ($12 million) — Bio says he’s 33 years old, but Guillen appears to have the knees of a 53-year-old. Can still outrun a statue, however.
Gil Meche ($11.4 million) — Inning-eating right-hander who, when healthy, would be No. 3 or No. 4 starter on a contending team.
Coco Crisp ($6.8 million) — Reminds me of Brian McRae, a switch-hitting center fielder with speed who looks like a leadoff hitter but isn’t because of a weak on-base percentage.
Kyle Farnsworth ($4.25 million) — Well traveled right-handed middle reliever who looks good in a suit (6-foot-4, 233 pounds), throws aspirin tablets and surrenders home runs with uncommon regularity.
Ron Mahay ($4 million) — Does is seem strange that two of the Royals’ top five salaries belong to middle relievers? Now 38, if Mahay were right-handed he would be out of baseball.
Zack Greinke ($3.75 million) — Well, at least there is someone on the Royals’ roster who is earning his money.
David DeJesus ($3.6 million) — Ordinary bat, ordinary arm, above-average speed, good glove … and he’s one of the Royals’ best position players.
Mark Teahen ($3.575 million) — Mr. Versatility can do a lot of things on a baseball field. Unfortunately, Teahen is helpless at the plate with runners in scoring position.
Mike Jacobs ($3.275 million) — Home run or nothing. And usually it’s nothing. But at least he’s a below-average fielder.
John Buck ($2.9 million) — Lifetime major-league batting average of .234. Currently hitting .227. Anything else you need to know?
Miguel Olivo ($2.7 million) — Lifetime .241 hitter currently batting .234. Strikes out 11 times as much as he walks. Buck-Olivo tandem is probably the worst backstopping duo in K.C. in nearly 50 years (see Danny Kravitz and Harry Chiti of 1960 A’s).
Juan Cruz ($2.25 million) — Another struggling veteran middle reliever. Current earned-run average of 6.39 is worst on club now that Sidney Ponson has been dispatched.
Horacio Ramirez ($1.8 million) — What? Another struggling veteran middle reliever? But not anymore. He was so bad the Royals dumped him. Now hurling in the minor-league system of the pitching-starved Nationals.
Willie Bloomquist ($1.4 million) — Sort of a right-handed hitting Mark Teahen. Can play almost anywhere, but packs little offensive punch.
Kyle Davies ($1.3 million) — Young hurler with great stuff. But can’t find home plate with a GPS.
John Bale ($1.2 million) — Situational left-hander with a penchant for surrendering hits to left-handed hitters.
Joakim Soria ($1 million) — An anomaly in the K.C. bullpen. Can actually retire opposing hitters.
Billy Butler and Alberto Callaspo ($836,000) — That’s right. The two most productive hitters on the roster aren’t making a million dollars combined. Butler makes $421,000, Callaspo $415,000.
Nobody ever said baseball was fair.