Friday, the first day players and teams could exchange arbitration numbers, has come and gone and the American League Champs have the most players that have yet to reach an agreement: seven.
Those seven could cost the KC Royals a ton of money. Meaning, the Royals payroll should be more than $110 million in 2015.
The biggest gap in money is with closer Greg Holland. Last year, the All-Star made $4.725 million (which was agreed upon before a hearing). Now he is asking for $9 million. The Royals are offering $6.65 million. With the $$$ being thrown at decent closers, the Royals should just pay Holland.
Last year first baseman Eric Hosmer agreed to a $3.6 million contract before a hearing. This time around he is asking for $6.7 million. The Royals are offering $4.6 million.
The other five players are first time arbitration eligible players.
Outfielder Lorenzo Cain has the biggest gap between first timers. Last year, he made just $546,000 (a bargain with the way he played). He is now asking for $3.6 million, while the Royals are countering with $2 million.
Third baseman Mike Moustakas, who did nothing last season but hit five home runs in the postseason, is asking for $3.1 million, up from the $549,000 he made in 2014. The Royals are offering $1.85 million.
Lefty Danny Duffy made just $526,000 in 2014, but was in his first full season back from Tommy John surgery. He is asking for $3 million, but the Royals are offering just $1.75 million. Duffy is an interesting case because he has the stuff to be a legit top of the rotation starter. Problem is, he has not shown the durability or the command.
Seventh inning fireballer Kelvin Herrera made just $522,250 in 2014 when he took the baseball world by storm. Now he is asking for $1.9 million, while the Royals are offering $1.15 million. I am thinking the two sides will meet in between and should do so fairly easily.
The final player is outfielder Jarrod Dyson. He made $530,000 in 2014 and is asking for $1.6 million. Considering he is far less needed than Herrera, I am thinking he will get much closer to what the Royals are offering ($900,000).
Those seven players and the Royals have until February 1st to reach an agreement or head to an arbitration hearing, where either the player gets what he wants or the team pays what they want. No middle ground.
GM Dayton Moore has yet to go to an arbitration hearing in his tenure with the Royals.