That sort of changes everything, you know?
I've got the growing sense that the Royals will need Bruce Chen in 2012, and possibly even 2013. While 34 year-old journeyman pitchers without great stuff are everywhere (I almost hit a couple on the way to work every morning), ones that know how to pitch aren't so common. You wouldn't want a staff full of Bruce Chens, but having one, especially on a starting-pitching starved team like the Royals, isn't bad at all.
I wouldn't want to offer him a two-year deal, but I'm thinking if he's able to more or less perform like this the rest of the season, he'll get some nibbles in the offseason -- a couple of which might be in more attractive locales. Normally I wouldn't mind letting him go, but Danny Duffy's up-and-down beginning (mostly down) in addition to the setbacks for Mike Montgomery and John Lamb sort of dictate the Royals wanting to hang onto someone reliable.
As a side note, with another good start, I imagine Dayton Moore will get some calls on him prior to the trade deadline. I can't really imagine the Royals getting enough in return for Chen considering their lack of depth in the rotation, but I think he'll draw some interest considering he's so cheap.
It's going to be an interesting few weeks, as the Royals have several players that will draw at least a small-to-moderate amount of interest in the trade market. Here's to hoping that whatever moves Moore makes, he has an eye towards helping the team in 2012 or 2013.