Former Royals closer Greg Holland expected to sign with Rockies

Former Kansas City Royals relief pitcher Greg Holland.
Former Kansas City Royals relief pitcher Greg Holland. JSLEEZER@KCSTAR.COM

Former Royals closer Greg Holland, a key piece during their 2014 postseason run, is close to becoming a member of the Colorado Rockies.

Holland and the Rockies have agreed to a one-year contract with an option for 2018, pending a physical. The news was first reported by Jeff Passan of Yahoo Sports.

Holland missed last season and the final month and postseason of 2015 recovering from Tommy John surgery. Before then, Holland was one of the game’s top closers and a cog in the Royals’ rise to prominence.

From 2011-14, he tossed 256  1/3 innings and posted a 1.86 ERA, averaging 12.6 strikeouts every nine innings.

Holland posted 113 saves in that span. He has the top two saves seasons in club history with 47 in 2013 and 46 in 2014.

In the 2014 postseason, Holland recorded seven saves, including all four of the Royals’ victories over the Orioles in the American League Championship Series. The seven saves matched a major-league record for one postseason.

Holland elected not to sign with the Royals during the previous off-season and remained a free agent throughout 2016, and he held a showcase for teams in Arizona in early November, where his fastball topped out at close to 91 mph.

Holland was with the Royals at the Dominican Republic earlier in the week at the memorial service for Yordano Ventura.

Blair Kerkhoff: 816-234-4730, @BlairKerkhoff