Word came in last week that former big-league catcher Vance Wilson signed a minor league contract with the Royals. While this is not probably significant for Kansas City, it could be huge for Northwest Arkansas.
The signing came with the caveat that Wilson will play at the Double-A level to start the season and in the same city where he currently resides. He will be rehabbing his right elbow at the start of the year, but the 35 year-old with 6 season of big league experience will be a welcome addition to the Naturals clubhouse. Wilson can basically serve as a player/coach type both during his rehab and once he is healthy imparting the knowledge he has gained on the Naturals players and helping to mold what promises to be another young but talented NWA pitching staff.
Some may see it as a negative to have a 35 year-old taking up a roster spot on a Double-A club, but this scenario is a win-win situation for both sides. Vance Wilson gets an opportunity to suit up for his hometown team and get healthy while playing baseball and the Royals get a first class individual with big-league experience and a proven track record to help their Double-A franchise.