Sep 22, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Royals pitcher James Shields (33) delivers a pitch against the Texas Rangers during the first inning at Kauffman Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Peter G. Aiken-USA TODAY Sports

MLB Rumors: James Shields willing to sign long-term with Kansas City Royals

The Kansas City Royals seem to be on the cusp of being really good but are in danger of losing some key pieces this offseason that could reset the team’s chances of being contenders. One way the Royals can avoid falling into old habits would be to sign pitcher James Shields to a long-term deal, and that appears to be something both sides want to strive for.

According to Royals writer Dick Kaegel, Shields is willing to sign long-term with the Royals this summer.

Shields hasn’t discussed the matter so far with general manager Dayton Moore and, if they don’t get around to it before Opening Day, it’s not likely to happen in season.

“During the season, my main focus is trying to win games and really get some wins for this team,” Shields said.

It’s likely that Shields is seeing the market for pitchers and isn’t stoked about hitting free agency to just float around all winter long. He’s not a free agent until next offseason, but it would be in the Royals best interest to lock up Shields long-term now and check that off their list of things to do.

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Tags: James Shields Kansas City Royals

  • jessanders

    The question is how long term is he going to look for?

    3 years? Sold. Sign him up. 5 years? That’s pushing it. He’s 32, and has pitched a LOT of innings in the past several years.

    He’s likely going to cost 15 million a year average, and that’s a huge portion of the teams payroll (1/6 right now, likely 12%-15% at the least by the end of a 5 year deal).

    I like Shields, I really like watching him pitch, and I’m higher on him than a lot of people.

    That said, a 5+ year deal is ridiculously risky for an aging pitcher whose numbers are already showing signs of decline.

    • Royals_Fan

      That’s why you do a 5-year/$___ with a team option after 3 years. If he starts to stuggle then we let him go. If he continues to play great we keep him a little longer.