Kansas City Royals trade Michael A. Taylor to Minnesota Twins

The Kansas City Royals have traded veteran outfielder Michael A. Taylor to the Minnesota Twins in exchange for two pitching prospects.

ESPN’s Jeff Passan originally reported the trade on Monday, with the Royals confirming the move a few hours later.

Taylor spent two seasons in Kansas City, batting .249 with an on-base percentage of .304 over 266 games with the club. In 2022, Taylor posted a .254 average, the second-best mark of his career, while hitting nine home runs and tallying 43 RBIs. He also won a Gold Glove in 2021.

His two years with the Royals followed a seven-year stint with the Washington Nationals to begin his career.

Minnesota acquires the one year remaining year on Taylor’s contract. Kansas City originally signed him to a one-year deal ahead of the 2021 season, then re-signed him to a two-year contract worth $9 million that September.

In exchange, the Royals are getting two relief pitching prospects. That includes 23-year-old righty Steven Cruz and 25-year-old lefty Evan Sisk.

Cruz spent the entire 2022 season at Double-A Wichita, where he made 46 appearances and posted a 1-4 record with a 5.14 ERA.

Sisk spent last season splitting time between Wichita and Triple-A St. Paul in the Twins’ system. Between those two stops, Sisk recorded a 1.57 ERA with a 5-1 record in 50 total appearances. He was originally drafted by the St. Louis Cardinals and was sent to Minnesota in a 2021 trade headlined by left-handed pitcher J.A. Happ.

Most of the Royals’ acquisitions this offseason have centered on pitching, although this is their first notable trade. Kansas City added starting pitcher Ryan Yarbrough back in December, then signed veteran starter Jordan Lyles just two weeks later.

The Royals have also reportedly agreed to a deal with free-agent reliever Aroldis Chapman, although the team hasn’t announced that move yet.

Kansas City’s trade with Minnesota comes less than a month before the start of Spring Training in Surprise, Arizona. Royals pitchers and catchers are due to report on Feb. 15.