11 crucial contract decisions await the KC Royals

(Photo By Winslow Townson/Getty Images)
(Photo By Winslow Townson/Getty Images) /
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It won’t be long before the World Series ends and the complicated offseason baseball business heats up. Assembling next season’s rosters will preoccupy all 30 clubs, including the KC Royals: deciding who to keep, who to trade and trade for, and which free agents to pursue, will all take center stage.

Included in the annual Hot Stove whirlwind will, of course, be arbitration. Kansas City can avoid battling any, or all, of the 11 Royals eligible for the process by giving them new contracts, or by simply “non-tendering” them—in other words, not offering them deals for next season, thereby making them free agents eligible to strike new deals with any other club.

Part and parcel of tender-no tender decisions is predicting how much money those 11 players might make if failing to hammer out new contracts forces the parties into high stakes, adversarial, no-middle-ground hearings where arbitrators decide whose proposed salary—a player’s or a team’s—wins.

Who are the 11 arbitration-eligible KC Royals and what awards might they get?

Useful in considering Kansas City’s tender/non-tender choices is Major League Baseball Trade Rumors’ recent forecast of potential arbitration awards, which projects these potential salaries for the 11 eligible Royals:

  • Brad Keller, $ 7 million
  • Scott Barlow, $4.9 million
  • Nicky Lopez, $3.4 million
  • Adalberto Mondesi and Luke Weaver, $3 million
  • Brady Singer, $2.9 million
  • Amir Garrett, $2.6 million
  • Kris Bubic, $1.8 million
  • Ryan O’Hearn and Taylor Clarke, $1.5 million
  • Josh Staumont, $ 1 million

Even the stingy Royals can absorb all those possible awards, but that won’t happen. They’ll make deals with some players and non-tender others.

But just what decisions should the club make?

Let’s find out.