The Royals are not typically a team that spends a lot in the free agent market. They have already signed Kendrys Morales, Alex Rios and Edinson Volquez to deals and now the club has announced that they have agreed to a two-year deal with RHP Kris Medlen.
— Kansas City Royals (@Royals) December 18, 2014
Ken Rosenthal is reporting that the deal is worth $8.5 million with an option for a third year. Medlen can also earn another $4 million in incentives in the first year and $6 million in 2016.
Source: Medlen deal with #Royals includes $4M in incentives in first year, $6M in second.
— Ken Rosenthal (@Ken_Rosenthal) December 18, 2014
This has the potential to be a great deal for the defending American League Champions. Medlen had a great 2012 campaign going 10-1 with a 1.57 ERA and a staggering 256 ERA+ according to baseball-reference.com. What makes this even more impressive is the fact that Medlen did this coming off a 2011 season in which he was recovering from Tommy John surgery. In 2013, the California native went 15-12 with a 3.11 ERA in 197 innings. Medlen underwent his second Tommy John surgery in March 2014 and missed the entire season.
There is not much history with pitchers that have undergone two Tommy John surgeries. But the Royals’ rotation appears to be set after their signing of Edinson Volquez on Wednesday. The Royals do not need him to step into the rotation right away. If Medlen can get back to the pitcher he once was, then this deal has the potential to be the steal of the off-season.