The Royals had a few decisions to make at last night’s non-tender deadline as several players needed to be tendered contracts or they could leave the team as free agents. For a number of the roster, this is simply procedural. Alex Gordon was never in danger, for example.

The Royals had a couple of players they could have non-tendered. Brayan Pena figures to be a backup to Sal Perez next year… He could have been gone. Except the Royals don’t want to be caught short behind the plate. Mitch Maier was a candidate as well. He couldn’t buy his way into a game last summer, but with the Melk-Man roaming the San Francisco outfield next summer, Ned Yost has been talking about Our Mitch a little more. Chris Getz could have been gone. That’s probably just wishful thinking on my part. I seriously doubt the Royals were ever going to let him hit the open market. Can you imagine the frenzy?

So in the end, the Royals tendered contracts to 31 of the 32 unsigned players for next season. Aaron Laffey was the lone non-tender.

Kind of strange how the Royals have been managing the roster this winter. They pick up Laffey on a waiver claim and he’s immediately a candidate to be cut whenever the Royals need space on the 40-man. Instead, when they signed Jonathan Broxton they chose to DFA Jeff Bianchi (who was picked up by the Cubs.) Then, just ahead of the Rule 5 draft, they dealt Yam Navarro to open a roster spot. They made a pick, but then immediately dealt that player to the Yankees. Now, they non-tender Laffey.

Weird. They could have saved themselves the hassle by DFA’ing Laffey a little earlier in this process.

Still, maybe GMDM has a trick or two up his sleeve. Maybe there’s a trade in the works or a free agent signing upcoming.

Or maybe the Royals still can’t get a handle on how to utilize their roster.

Close call.