Relief pitcher Greg Holland avoided arbitration with the Royals as he agreed to a one-year contract for 2015, the team announced Friday.
According to a person with knowledge of the situation, the contract was worth $8.25 million.
With Holland’s case settled, Kansas City has only one arbitration-eligible player left to handle, first baseman Eric Hosmer.
Holland, the two-time All Star closer, continues to benefit from the arbitration system. He earned $4.675 million in his first year of eligibility in 2014. His salary should leap into eight figures for 2016. He can become a free agent after that.
At 29, Holland has established himself as the finest reliever in the American League. Since 2011, he trails only Atlanta closer Greg Kimbrel in wins above replacement among qualified relievers.
Holland continued to suppress opposing hitters in 2014 as he struck out 90 batters in 62 1/3 innings with a 1.44 ERA. Along with Wade Davis and Kelvin Herrera, Holland led the team’s nonpareil bullpen through October.