The Kansas City Royals and third baseman Mike Moustakas are in the middle of discussing a two-year deal which would buy out the player's remaining years of arbitration eligibility. MLB.com's Jeffrey Flanagan first reported about the unannounced deal, mentioning that Moustakas told him his representatives are currently in talks with the Royals front office.
If accurate, this deal would be a good development for the 27-year-old third baseman. Last season, he earned $2.64 million in his first year of eligibility. The Royals and Moustakas were previously reported to be at odds with their arbitration proposals as the latter filed for $7 million while the former countered at $4.2 million.
After becoming the Minor League Player Of The Year back in 2010, Moustakas has since struggled to adjust to the major leagues. However, after the death of his mother in July 2015, many had observed that "Moose" played like the guy who dominated AA and AAA more than five years ago.
He slashed .281/.375/.562 in August and .291/.342/.563 the following month for the KC Royals. He then blasted 12 of his 22 home runs, along with driving in 43 of his 82 RBIs in the last two months of the 2015 season. Considering that he had posted an OPS only as high as .708, 2015 was a breakout year for the Kansas City's first round pick (and second overall) in the 2007 draft.
"There's been a couple talks about a multi-year deal, a two-year deal, also a one-year deal. We're just trying to figure out what the best fit is for everything," Moustakas said at the Royals FanFest on Saturday. "They've been talking back and forth and trying to figure it all out. They give me the information and I go, 'Yeah, that's all right.' But I try to stay out of it because I love Scott and I love the Royals."
In other KC Royals lineup updates, catcher Salvador Perez mentioned on Friday that his agents and the Royals have been involved in discussions to rework his contract. Perez has played an important role in the club's consecutive World Series visits in 2014 and 2015. It was back in 2012 when the Venezuelan catcher signed a five-year deal worth just $7 million in 2012 (with incentives), which was a bargain deal, before he became a premier everyday player.
When asked if he thinks the new deal will get done before Spring Training next month, Perez replied, "I don't know. I got my agents they are talking to. We'll see. We have to wait for it. I'm happy either way. I'm happy no matter what. I'm here to play the game... I'll just play hard and keep my concentration and help my teammates. [And] try to get back to the World Series."
The 25-year-old Perez is the reigning World Series Most Valuable Player. He has come off a season in which he played for a total of 142 games, hit .260/.280/.426 with 21 home runs and 70 RBI, as well as posted a WAR of 2.2. He made the All-Star team in three consecutive years starting in 2013 and also won three straight Gold Glove Awards.