Less than three hours remain till the non-waiver trade deadline, and no Royal has been told to pack up his stuff. For purely sentimental reasons, I, like others, would like to see Octavio Dotel remain on the team. After all, I have bets going -- official and non -- with several parties that the Royals will win either 78 or 79 games this year (78 was wishful thinking; 79 was the result of libations). But there really is no reason to keep Dotel, no matter how much he says he likes it in Kansas City. Look at what happened when the Washington Nationals kept Alfonso Soriano: nothing. Nothing for the rest of the season, when the team never contended for the postseason, and nothing after the season, when Soriano brushed off the Nats to sign his ridiculous contract with the Cubs. The Royals, if they keep Dotel, will be the front-runners to resign him after the season, but is that really what the Royals want? He'll be 34 in the off-season and has a history of injuries. And he's asking for three years of guaranteed money? No thanks. This is where reason has to trump sentimentality.
On the field last night, Gil Meche -- Dayton's prize signing and one that, for the moment, gives our blog's namesake currency to acquire whatever pitcher he wants with little fear of reproach -- threw seven innings of very good ball, only to be trumped by Scott Baker, who tossed eight innings of superb ball. Take out the Royals' 4th and Baker has a no-hitter. As is, the Royals' four-game winning streak is finis, though they remain over .500 for the month of July. Three games over .500, actually, so tonight's game holds meaning only as games normally hold meaning, in and of itself. Whatever happens, the Royals are assured of their second consecutive winning month, this after not having one since July 2003. Think about that for a moment.