KC Royals avoid arbitration with several players

Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports
Mandatory Credit: Jay Biggerstaff-USA TODAY Sports /

The KC Royals under Dayton Moore have been known to come to agreements with players before the arbitration hearings and the trend continues in 2020.

Going through a complete arbitration process essentially pits the KC Royals against the player by arguing why the employee should not earn as much as they are requesting.  Moore recognizes this and goes to great lengths to reach deals instead of going to trial.

It should be no surprise then that three agreements were reached.  Jesse Hahn, Jakob Junis, and Franchy Cordero all have new one-year deals in place.

Hahn definitely deserved a bump in pay following his performance in 2020.  After the Royals signed him following arm surgery they converted him to a reliever last year.  Six poor appearances in 2019 may have left some doubt about his recovery but he shook that off this summer.

This year Hahn saved three games, posted a 0.52 ERA, and struck out 19 batters in 17 1/3 innings.  His WHIP was an astounding 0.69 and would have been even lower except for the fact that he walked a batter nearly once every two frames.

The new deal will nearly triple his prior contract but if he performs at the same level it will be more than worth it.  Certainly better to spend the money on an internal candidate than the amount of money a reliever in the open market might have cost.

Junis deal questionable

Also almost tripling his salary is right-hander Junis.  This deal is odd because his last two seasons have been worse than the first two of his career.  His ERA and WHIP have been climbing as well as his ability to keep the ball in the park.

There is a belief he may heading for a bullpen role but no guarantee that will fix the output.  Perhaps at age 28 it might have been better to non-tender Junis and give a 40-man spot to one of many pitchers set to explode onto the scene.

Cordero gets a slight bump in pay

The Royals received a small sample of Cordero’s bat in 2020 giving him 38 at-bats after he was acquired in a trade with the San Diego Padres.  The power potential is big, we still are waiting to see if he can get on base with regular success.

With the team short on outfielders, giving him an increase from nearly $600,000 to $800,000 is a low-risk move.  His defense is a bit sketchy but outfield coach Rusty Kuntz may be able to work his magic in that aspect.

Next. Royals sign Mike Minor. dark

The KC Royals still have five players eligible for arbitration, all of them key components of the team.  They are Hunter Dozier, Jorge Soler, Brad Keller, Maikel Franco, and Adalberto Mondesi.  There could be surprising news to come from these candidates, stay tuned.