Dyson could play more prominent role for KC

GM Moore plans to give reserve outfielder a chance to win open spot

Dyson could play more prominent role for KC

NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- While the Royals have two open corner outfielder spots with the free-agent departures of Alex Rios and Alex Gordon, one spot appears to be filled internally.

Royals general manager Dayton Moore said at the Winter Meetings that the organization believes that reserve outfielder Jarrod Dyson likely will have a chance to win one of the spots.

"Yeah, we feel as a group that it's time to let Dyson play a lot more," Moore said from his suite at the Opryland Hotel. "He's going to get that opportunity as we sit here today. Things could change, but …"

Moore said Dyson could play either left or right field.

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"I think he could play both," Moore said. "It would just depend on the skill of the other outfielder we get."

While the Royals continue to keep monitoring Gordon's market value and haven't abandoned hopes or his return, one option could be that the Royals sign a cost-efficient corner outfielder to a one-year deal this offseason, thus buying time for either prospect Bubba Starling or Brett Eibner to emerge in 2017 as a starter.

Meanwhile, Moore and his staff seem confident that Dyson can hold down one corner spot, perhaps with some backup support from Paulo Orlando.

"I think Dyson has on-base ability," Moore said. "He has the ability to bunt, but when he doesn't play regularly, he lacks conviction in that part of the game. He's a tremendous defender. His caught-stealing percentage is as good as it gets.

"I think he's capable of stealing 50-some bases a year and score a lot of runs. When he gets on base, we score runs."

For his career, Dyson's success rate is 86 percent in steals (146-for-169).

But while Dyson's overall slash line is .255/.320/.343, he does struggle against left-handers (.222/.300/.278).

That's where the right-handed-hitting Orlando plays a role.

"I don't think it would be a strict platoon, however," Moore said.

Jeffrey Flanagan is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @FlannyMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.