[Update: Royals sign Cain to 2-year,$17.5 million deal on Monday]
The KC Royals are closing in on a two-year deal with arbitration-eligible centerfielder Lorenzo Cain, according to Yahoo Sports reporter Jeff Passan:
Lorenzo Cain’s agent Joshua Kusnick submitted a $7.85 million arbitration filing with the league, while the Kansas City Royals countered at $5 million according to CBS Sports Jon Heyman:
In the arbitration process, an arbitrator would pick between the two proposed contracts for the 2016 season after hearing each side make their case.
More from KC Royals Rumors
- KC Royals Winter Meetings Tracker: Day 2 update
- KC Royals Rumors: Club should pass on this Yankee
- MLB Trade Deadline Rumors: KC Royals at a glance
- KC Royals Rumors: Is club pulling the trade trigger?
- Wainwright deal would create issues for KC Royals
Lorenzo Cain turned in a career year in 2015, finishing third in the AL MVP vote for his .307/.361/.477 slash line with 16 home runs and 28 steals as the KC Royals no. 3 hitter. Cain added Gold Glove caliber defense in center (though Tampa Bay’s Kevin Kiermaier took home the award after Cain wasn’t even a finalist). The soon-to-be 30-year-old Cain is a late bloomer who might just be finally hitting his peak after only taking up the game when he got cut from his high school basketball team as a 15-year-old.
The proposed $17.5 million two-year deal would be considerably more than the $6.42 mid-point between the KC Royals and Cain’s filing. However, the agreement could prove to be a bargain if Lorenzo Cain puts up another MVP-caliber season like he did in 2015. From Cain’s point of view, he’s allowing the Kansas City Royals to buy out his final two arbitration years in return for guaranteed money.
As such, the deal makes sense from both sides.
With Cain nearing an agreement, which I suppose Heyman knows because he has sources inside the league office who cued him to the contract filings, Mike Moustakas is the only arbitration eligible KC Royals player without a contract for 2016. I’m certain Moore will turn his attention to that contract right after inking Cain.