On Friday, the Kansas City Royals announced that they have signed Lucas Duda to a minor league deal. Duda had previously been with the Minnesota Twins but left when they told him that he would not be on the Opening Day roster. In 13 spring training games, Duda hit .258/.395/.355 with three doubles and seven walks. The 33-year old was signed by the Royals to a one-year deal last year and hit .242/.310/.413 with 13 home runs in 87 games before he was sold to the Atlanta Braves.
This signing is a puzzling one as the Royals are currently in the middle of a rebuild and should be looking at younger options. First base had already seemed covered with guys with Ryan O’Hearn the starter and Hunter Dozier as a left-handed option. Frank Schwindel is also a candidate given his versatility. The only way this addition could work is for a veteran bat at DH, with Jorge Soler playing in right field most of the time.
However, it is a minor league deal. This means that Duda could be playing in Omaha and a guy like Frank Schwindel could get time in the majors. However, given the fact that Drew Butera, Alcides Escobar, and Duda were all released from their clubs this weekend, this was not the signing that anyone saw coming.
It will be interesting to see how this signing will turn out. Especially when you consider the amount of first base options the Royals have. But maybe this is a good thing as it will give the younger players competition as well as a veteran presence in the clubhouse. Only time will tell to see how this turns out.