As he enters his final off-season before becoming a free agent, Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer is due for a big pay increase.
Homser was paid $8.25 million in 2016 as part of a two-year, $13.9 million contract he signed before the 2015 season. Hosmer set career highs last season with 25 home runs and 104 RBIs and was the All-Star Game MVP.
However, Hosmer also had a career-worst 132 strikeouts and saw his on-base-plus slugging percentage drop 61 points to .761 in 2016. Advanced metrics show he struggled as a base runner and fielder, and Fangraphs determined Hosmer had a negative-0.2 Wins Above Replacement.
But the website MLB Trade Rumors projects Hosmer will get a $5 million raise in arbitration to $13.3 million. Although just a projection, MLB Trade Rumors has proved to be close when making its annual predictions.
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The Royals have eight players who are eligible for arbitration, and the sides will exchange figures in January.
Left-hander Danny Duffy, who earned $4.225 million this past season, is another player who is in line for a hefty raise.
Duffy went 12-3 with a 3.51 ERA, and he set career highs in victories, starts (26), strikeouts (188), strikeouts per nine innings (9.4) and strikeout-to-walk ratio (4.48). He was in the top 10 among American League starters in those strikeout statistics.
Duffy became the ace of the Royals staff and MLB Trade Rumors projected his salary will nearly double to $8.2 million.
Kelvin Herrera: $5.3 million (made $2.55 million in 2015)
Dillon Gee: $3.6 million ($2 million)
Jarrod Dyson: $2.5 million ($1.725 million)
Daniel Nava: $1.5 million ($1.375 million)
Tim Collins: $1.5 million ($1.475 million)
Tony Cruz: $1.0 million ($975,000)
Using those numbers as a guide, the total of $36.9 million would bump the Royals’ payroll to at least $136 million for 20 players (if they exercise options on pitchers Wade Davis and shortstop Alcides Escobar).
That doesn’t include mutual options for Kendrys Morales, Edinson Volquez, Kris Medlen and Luke Hochevar.