For those Kansas City Royal fans who thought the last 15 years were the worst, wait until they get a load of next year. The Royals might have the best farm system in baseball and are gearing up for 2013, but they are officially in bottom-out mode in 2011.

The team GM Dayton Moore is going to field in 2011 will be the worst team in baseball. Outside of Zack Greinke, who will most likely get traded, and Billy Butler and Joakim Soria, this team has zero talent on their roster.

And their recent acquisitions haven’t helped the situation either.

This week, the Royals signed outfielders Jeff Francoeur ($2.5 million) and Melky Cabrera ($1.25 million) to one-year contracts. To sign one free-agent scrub outfielder, who doesn’t walk is tough, but to sign two of them? Well, that’s the equivalent to Chinese water torture.

Both Francoeur and Cabrera are fourth and fifth outfielders on most teams, but will be everyday players with the Royals. Not only will they be everyday players with the Royals, but looking at their depth chart, I could see Francoeur batting in the middle of their lineup.

That’s how bad this team will be in 2011.

Here is their—or I should say my—projected lineup for 2011:

1. Getz, 2B

2. Aviles, 3B

3. Butler, DH

4. Francoeur, RF

5. Ka’aihue, 1B

6. Gordon, LF

7. Cabrera, CF

8. Kendall, C

9. Betancourt, SS

I just threw up in my mouth as I typed out this lineup. I have seen more talent at a strip club in Milwaukee on a Tuesday night than there is in this mess of a lineup.

And don’t get me started on Cabrera. I was quite pleased when he was exposed as a fraud in Atlanta this season. Nothing angered me more than New York Yankee fans walking around with Cabrera jerseys on, telling me how good he was. I felt like I was talking crazy pills.

He was a clown in New York that just so happened to be surrounded by eight All-Stars. Anybody with some sanity would have noticed that Cabrera isn’t a starting-caliber center fielder on a Major League club.

I can only imagine how poor he is going to be surrounded by nobodies in KC.

The Royals are in the bottom-out phase of Moore’s plan, which means they need to sign mediocre veterans to fill out the starting lineup. It’s like when they signed guys like Terrence Long, Reggie Sanders, Jose Lima and Matt Stairs at the end of their careers to start in years past.

It’s going to be at least two years before top prospects like Mike Montgomery, Eric Hosmer, Mike Moustakas, Tim Melville and Aaron Crow contribute at the Major League level. Until then, there are going to be some more lean years in Kansas City.


You can follow The Ghost of Moonlight Graham on Twitter @ theghostofmlg

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